The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “england v south africa”

England v South Africa. Day 5. Oval

As most people expected this game was over by tea. But England, well some of them did put up a fight. Ian Bell and Matt Prior worked hard and were somewhat unlucky in getting out. Ravi Bopara looked the average county player he is. But the real story of this game is the great weather, the fact it went 5 days and the superb South African bowling, England were outplayed frankly in almost every regard except Wicket keeper where AB de Villiers looked average to poor.

As a result of making ticket prices 15£, the Oval was decently filled with only the hospitality guests absent as judged by their empty boxes. Dozens of pints were consumed, seemingly by some individuals, and the food prices remain too high for me with the choice poor. A picnic every time for me. But a great day out, a great test match.

Lastly, the stewards. What exactly is their role? Some were gifted lovely luminous jackets with “steward” emblazoned on the back, if we might not have guessed, but others had simeply ” response” on theirs and green jackets. None of them performed any useful purpose other than on occasions blocking visibility. but there again Bopara’s batting or a stewards bottom? The difference is what?

Ian Bell

Ravi Bopara departs bowled

South Africa Keeper and Slips[gallery columns="1" orderby="ID"]

England V South Africa Day 4. Oval test.

Test matches are always a spectacle and more so when England are playing at the Oval. A ground that although lacking the majesty of Lord’s has something of its own. A sort of “people’s ground”. Today the ground was packed with cricket fans paying their £60 to watch a day’s play and that is what they saw. South Africa dominated throughout. Scoring around 200 runs without losing a wicket, nor looking as though they might, to declare around 250 runs ahead of England. So the final session began with England needing to bat out 4 sessions to draw the game. The alleged best team in the world should be able to do that on a placid pitch. Wrong. England’s batting was appalling. A few good balls got wickets ( England got no wickets because they did not bowl any good balls) but Kevin Pietersen seemed determined to get himself out. A stupid cameo innings that gained the team 19 runs before his middle stump went cartwheeling out. Strauss was even worse, sweeping a harmless ball up in the air to square leg. Andrew Strauss has had a bad game all round. Bad batting and bad captaincy. The highlight of the day was seeing Hasim Amla score 300 not out. He looked like he might score 1000 if left there for a few days.

Meanwhile the sun shone, 30 degrees at least, the food selection was poor and expensive. We settled on a pastie for £4.50. No alcohol is allowed in the ground, cycnical. But we all enjoyed the occassion and no doubt will be back next year.




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