Tour Diary

What will the ‘Greatest Final’ be remembered for?

 July 16, 2019
 neil manthorp
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For hours at a time when New Zealand were carefully picking their way through the invisible nettles en route to 241-8, and then again when England were trying desperately to keep hold of a half-set jelly, the tension amongst the crowd was the most palpable I have ever experienced – certainly for such a prolonged […]

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Fans and Sports Stars

 July 11, 2019
 neil manthorp
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Matches at global events involving India are always special occasions and they require special preparation. An extra hour should be set aside just to get to the stadium, never mind into it. The India/Pakistan match at Old Trafford a couple of weeks ago was truly extraordinary – the ICC received just under 900,000 applications for […]

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Faf weighing up future options.

 July 6, 2019
 neil manthorp
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“It’s not the right time to be making decisions about your future, with emotions and the disappointment of the World Cup still fresh,” Proteas captain, Faf du Plessis, said before the final match against Australia at Old Trafford on Saturday. Du Plessis, who turns 35 next week, has been made an offer to captain the […]

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World Cup ‘Radio Silence’

 June 30, 2019
 neil manthorp
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International television broadcasters who wish to show the Cricket World Cup cannot construct their own production. There is only one ‘feed’ and everyone has to take it. National broadcasters do their own ‘pre’ and ‘post’ match shows but obviously take the world feed produced by the ICC. There are only so many cameras you can […]

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Listless and lethargic – no answers forthcoming

 June 25, 2019
 neil manthorp
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The ICC’s World Cup media department has been relentless in pursuit of comment from players before and after every game with even David Warner forced to break his self-imposed media silence after winning a couple of man-of-the match awards. There has been no room for sympathy or let-off for the losers. The interviews are not […]

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“A little bit surprising…”

 June 21, 2019
 neil manthorp
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It may be nothing more than a product of age and experience but there seems to be far less point in conducting a post-mortem on this World Cup performance than on any of the six which preceded it from 1996 to 2015. Besides, there are still three games to go so performing a post-mortem on […]

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Rained off in Southampton

 June 11, 2019
 neil manthorp
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It was during a phone call during the IPL that AB de Villiers expressed “how he was feeling” to his old mate Faf du Plessis. “I told him I thought it was too late but that I would check with Ottis Gibson and the selectors the following morning,” du Plessis confirmed after the washed out […]

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Completely outclassed – blessing in disguise?

 June 6, 2019
 neil manthorp
 No Comments

It was perfectly possible to convince yourself after the opening game against England that South Africa were close to competing, that but for a few errors here and there, they might have chased down 312. It was also possible to build a viable argument that the result against Bangladesh might have gone either way on […]

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How low can the Proteas sink?

 June 3, 2019
 neil manthorp
 No Comments

South African cricket teams are not unfamiliar with the level and intensity of anger currently being directed at this one, but in previous World Cups it has only peaked when the team has crashed out of the tournament. Not after two games. At previous World Cups the public backlash has been disproportionate to the effort […]

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World Cup shocker – Enjoy the feeling

 May 31, 2019
 neil manthorp
 No Comments

It’s not easy to enjoy being thrashed and it’s impossible to predict what may happen in the weeks to come, but the loss to England should be enjoyed and there’s nothing wrong with predicting a bleak future in the next four weeks. It is human nature to react strongly and one of the reasons we […]

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