Twenty20 international, Old Trafford:
LIVE TEXT COMMENTARY (all times BST)
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There's nothing to see, go home. Ben Dirs is back here on Tuesday, join him then.
Martin, Battersea, text 81111:
"Re Anon earlier. Hope his bookie agrees that it's not a legitimate match! They have their own rules!"
So it's back to Old Trafford - and the same pitch - on Tuesday for a one-off shootout before the start of the seven-match one-day series, a day-nighter which starts at 1900 BST
. Whether Ravi Bopara will be in England's side in 48 hours' time will be an intriguing discussion point on 606 over the next few days.
Noel Gallagher's a relieved man as umpires Richard Kettlebrough and Ian Gould deem the outfield is too wet to resume the first Twenty20 international. However, spectators will not be entitled to a refund, which is slightly controversial.
1805: BREAKING NEWS - MATCH ABANDONED
The rain, the raaaaaaaaiiiiiiiiiin. It's started again.
Bob W at home on a wet weekend, text 81111:
"Re 1735 - does this mean if we are bowled out in 4 overs it is not a legitimate match?"
If only. If England are all bowled out within the five-over minimum period, then they lose.
Anon, text 81111:
"RE 1745: I hope you're right as I had a days wages bet on England to win - never again! I haven't wanted it to rain as much since The Oval 2k5."
Hang on, the covers are coming off and the umpires are out on the field. Turns out if the game resumes at 1814 BST
, the hosts will need a Duckworth/Lewis-adjusted target of 46 runs from 23 deliveries, with a five-ball powerplay. And Brett Lee cannot bowl. If anyone sees Noel Gallagher popping round Gary Barlow's house, you know where you heard it first...
Phil, text 81111:
"Can someone clear up a point for my wife, Twenty20 means 20mm rain in 20 mins, she thinks it means 20 overs a side."
Grim, one word to describe my nightbus journey home from Camden last night, along with the current state of the Old Trafford outfield. The umpires are due to inspect the pitch in about 10 minutes, but there's about as much hope of play resuming as Noel Gallagher joining Take That.
Ian McCormack, TMS inbox:
"I live 300 yards from Old Trafford and the rain has stopped, but maybe the light will now have an effect as it's extremely dull. Whether there is further play or not, please can you all go straight home after the game as I wish to go to my local pub this evening."
Will Caston, Heathrow Airport, TMS inbox:
"In response to Andrew West. There is a mandatory four-year wait to play for an affiliate nation in international cricket."
Jonathan Agnew tells us that if there is no play by 1814 BST
, this game is consigned to the abandoned Bank Holiday weekend Twenty20 internationals between England and Australia dustbin of history.
ch21ss on 606:
"Given the consensus on this board that Bopara should be dropped, it seems most likely he will score centuries in each of the next three matches."
Still no word on any potential re-start time. England need to face five overs to constitute a legitimate match, so still another 23 deliveries to go. Meanwhile, Dirk Nannes' former Dutch team-mates are in a right old one-day ding-dong with Afghanistan in Amstelveen. The tourists dismissed the Netherlands for 188 from 47 overs and need 51 runs with 4 wickets and 10 overs remaining.
Anon, text 81111:
"Re Baker Street. I used to go to the same Squash club as Raf Ravenscroft - the real saxophonist! Don't worry about the bounced cheque...He more then made up for it later! Good squash player too."
Andrew West, Linlithgow, Scotland, TMS inbox:
"Just wondering when you say 'Once you play for one of the elite nations, you cannot change your allegiance back to your former country, so Ed Joyce cannot return to play cricket for Ireland because he has represented England and Dirk Nannes cannot play for the Netherlands. Ever.' How did Gavin Hamilton and Dougie Brown manage this after both playing for England?"
Ah. Good point.
Argh, it's about as gloomy as a Leonard Cohen number in Manchester right now, the rain could well have saved England a probable defeat. On a more positive note, Old Trafford has a brand spanking new undersoil drainage system.
Glen Young, TMS inbox:
"West country cider did wonders for Warne when he played club cricket in Bristol and no doubt it's given White the strength to top score for the Aussies today. Blame it on the Natch."
Alex, Netherlands, TMS inbox:
Now that Dirk Nannes has represented Australia is there no chance that he can play again for The Netherlands?
Once you play for one of the elite nations, you cannot change your allegiance back to your former country, so Ed Joyce cannot return to play cricket for Ireland because he has represented England and Dirk Nannes cannot play for the Netherlands. Ever.
Kev, Swalwell, TMS inbox:
"Blimey Pranav, talk about prophet of doom. Aussies have hit no sixes - White clears the rope. Openers look like villagers about to be out first ball - Denly makes a sharp exit. Any chance you could predict either a) Trott to hit 6 sixes in an over or b) more rain, to try to even the balance?"
Yeah sorry Kev, I'm not exactly writing home about this one.
1.2 overs - Eng 4-2
Mitchell Johnson serves up a loose - but fast - bouncer outside off stump, a delivery which is adjudged a wide. But the next ball sails into the hands of Shane Watson, stationed deep at first slip, as Bopara attempts to fend a wide delivery down to third man. Ugly dismissal and poor Ravi adopts the astronaut's shuffle as he walks back into the pavilion. Mon dieu, il pleut
- off go the players while the groundstaff bundle on with the covers.
1.2 overs - Eng 4-2 Bopara ct Watson b Johnson 1
1 over - Eng 3-1 Denly ct Hauritz b Lee 0
Nasty short-pitched delivery first up for Denly, who attempts to pull the ball down to fine leg, but completely and utterly misjudges the pace (90.2 mph) and bounce of the ball, spooning a simple catch to Nathan Hauritz at square leg. Oh dear, I knew that village cricket remark would repeat on me. In comes Oval hero Jonathan Trott, who sees Brett Lee overstep for a front-foot no-ball, but Lee ensures no runs are added with the free hit courtesy of a very well-disguised slower ball. Excellent start for Australia.
0.2 overs - Eng 1-1 Denly ct Hauritz b Lee 0
Oh dear. The international Primary Club has a new member...
Former England coach now Lancashire boss Peter Moores is on TMS and he thinks there could be some extra zing in the wicket courtesy of the earlier downpour. Out come the Aussie boys, followed by England's new opening combo of Kent's Joe Denly and Ravi Bopara, swinging their bats in circular fashion, the kind of thing replicated by village cricketers across the country shortly before a first ball duck. Brett Lee to open the bowling.
Cheers greet the removal of the hovercraft thing which protects the wicket as the umpires - minus coats and hats - inspect the pitch. Because the delay has been less than an hour, England - bar more stoppages - will face their full quota of 20 overs.
Chris Pettitt, TMS inbox:
"Boring saxophone fact: The sax solo on Baker Street was played by Raphael Ravenscroft. According to Wiki 'The solo has been mistakenly attributed to broadcaster and TV presenter Bob Holness, the result of a joke by Stuart Maconie in the NME, as retold on Have I Got News For You on May 22nd 2009. Ravenscroft was paid £27 for the session, with a cheque that bounced.'"
David Whitley, Sheffield, TMS inbox:
"Regarding Bob Holness and Baker Street, that is an urban myth. Mr Holness told me as much himself when I interviewed him years ago. More interestingly, however, he was the second actor to play James Bond (before Sean Connery, after Barry Nelson) - it was in a South African radio adaptation in the 1950s."
News just in - play will start at 1650 BST
Umpires Richard Kettlebrough and Ian Gould have been in deep conversation with various people in the outfield, but the covers are still on. The rope which sops up excess water from the outfield is doing the rounds, don't think we'll get any action in the next few minutes, so go and raid the fridge for that piece of cake you were saving for that Bergerac repeat on UK Gold this evening.
Trebell on 606:
"I think about 120 would be a total Eng would have chased. They lack the big hitters to go past 6 an over so have let this one go."
Chris, Holland, text 81111:
"Can you congratulate another English victory - with England now European Hockey Champions beating Germany 5-3 today in Amsterdam."
Easy Chris, one win at a time...
Talking of saxophones, anyone else ever heard the urban myth about Bob Holness playing the sax solo on Gerry Rafferty's Baker Street?
Can't remember who emailed in, but someone was steaming about Nannes' abrupt nationality change in the space of two months and how the International Cricket Council can permit such a flagrant move. Well, the reason is about the Netherlands is an associate member of the ICC, rather than a full elite member, hence the reason why Ed Joyce and Eoin Morgan can play for England despite representing Ireland. Works both ways angry England fans. The rain seems to have abated and on a more optimistic note, the wailing saxophone of Guru Josh is entertaining the Old Trafford crowd.
Andrew Watts (Watts & McCure Know the Score, 1725, fringe venue 264), text 81111:
"I'm doing a show about cricket at the Edinburgh Fringe. Last Sunday, the final Australian wicket fell half way through the show - and it was the best comedy moment of the fringe so far. We made my Aussie comedy partner read out the scorecard. Slowly. What chance of a similar victory during our final show today?"
As Roy Wood once sang: "Oh what a shame". A shower of rain delays the re-start for 15 minutes, but at this stage Messrs Duckworth and Lewis can continue sipping from their balloons of brandy - we don't need their services just yet.
AUSTRALIA 145-4 - ENGLAND NEED 146 TO WIN 20 overs - Aus 145-4
Sidebottom ambles in for the final over of the innings and turns into one 6ft long streak of crimson after watching Luke Wright shell the most regulation of catches at mid-on as Adam Voges attempts to clear the boundary. Oooh, you may want to keep your distance in the dressing room Luke. Still, no four-balls and the Aussies scamper through for a double from their 20 overs.
19 overs - Aus 137-4
Broad serves up a wide on a par with Steve Harmison's horror at Brisbane in 2006, only from around the wicket. And to a right-hander. And in Manchester. But White drives the very next delivery - a full ball outside off stump - straight into the Prittstick hands of Paul Collingwood. New man Adam Voges gets off the mark with a streaky edged boundary past third man, but a good over from Broad, who strangles the runs very admirably.
18.1 overs - Aus 132-4 Wicket White ct Collingwood b Broad 55
No more sixes for White, who drills Stuart Broad straight to Paul Collingwood on the edge of the circle. Good innings though.
Paul, Lancs, TMS inbox:
"Can't help feeling 20-20 England v Australia is to the Ashes what Louise Bagshaw's recent novel 'Glitz' is to Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, plenty of surface gloss as cover for a world empty of true emotion as opposed to deep human passions beneath the surface of a complex set of interlocking cultures and traditions."
18 overs - Aus 131-3
Cameron White absolutely marmalises Ryan Sidebottom over deep square leg and threatens to shatter the windows of the Lancashire committee room with his lusty blow, an impressive way to bring up his 50 from 33 balls. The Victorian all-rounder adds three more with some judicious running between the wickets, while another five runs are fashioned from the other four balls. Entertaining.
17 overs - Aus 117-3
Cameron White - a dead ringer for Queen's of the Stone Age lead singer Josh Homme in my album collection - connects a heavy swing to launch Graeme Swann over the deep midwicket boundary for the second six of the innings, a hefty blow. Good over for Australia, with a further six runs harvested from singles and doubles.
16 overs - Aus 105-3
Once again Soneji Murrays England's hopes - fresh from flaunting Australia's lack of sixes, Cameron White finds a considerable amount of willow to wallop Stuart "Borad" Broad over deep midwicket's head for a maximum. Broady opts for his around the wicket policy first used at the World Twenty20 a couple of months ago, a policy which yields temporary success as Australia cannot add another boundary from the over.
15 overs - Aus 93-3
Clarke skips down the pitch like a Russian ballerina and lofts Graeme Swann over mid-on for four - remember them? That's only the fifth boundary of the innings. Still no maximums though. Clarke collapses his front leg and sweeps a full ball through midwicket, but still cannot penetrate the fortress-like English field. Even David Copperfield (the magician, not the Charles Dickens character) would struggle to find a way through this lot right now.
14 overs - Aus 85-3
Cameron White implores Ian Gould to spread his arms after electing to leave a James Anderson bouncer outside off stump, but the bespectacled official looks towards fine leg, as if trying to work out what beers they have on tap in the bars. Cameron White goes aerial, but keeps finding the sweeper stationed on both sides of the boundary.
13 overs - Aus 79-3
Colly bounds in for his fourth and final over and sees Michael Clarke convert a single into a double running with considerable alacrity. Neither White or Clarke have calibrated their timing and singles are about as good as they can get right now. Top spell from the England skipper, who finishes with figures of 2-20.
12 overs - Aus 73-3
Butterfingers from Joe Denly, who forgets to snaffle a cut from Cameron White at backward point, but completes a dive Tom Daley would appreciate. Pretty regulation effort that and the returning Jimmy Anderson isn't exactly best pleased. More dot balls - the Aussies are really struggling here.
11 overs - Aus 68-3
Cameron White somehow contrives to miss the stumps with an offside dab which cannons off the bottom edge of his bat. However, his next scoring shot sees him clear mid-off's head with a beautifully struck inside out drive over mid-off for four. Buzz Lightyear and Woody sit riveted in the stands, although the threat of rain could change that imminently.
10 overs - Aus 60-3
On comes Graeme Swann for his first joust of the day with the ball from the Statham End, serving up a couple of tidy dot balls for Clarke. Still no pies to hit as the tourists reach the half-way stage about 20 runs less than where they would like to be.
9 overs - Aus 56-3
Warner descends on one knee as he attempts a slog sweep over midwicket for four, only for the ball to wrap him on his right leg. Colly's appeal is upheld by umpire Richard Kettlebrough, but TV replays clearly show the ball pitched outside leg stump. Not too much doubt about David Hussey's dismissal though. The arch Victorian biffer takes about three steps down the track in an attempt to smash Collingwood to Anfield, only to completely miss the ball and Matt Prior to complete a very simple stumping. Hussey doesn't bother to inspect the stump damage behind him. Out comes Cameron White.
8.3 overs - Aus 54-3 Wicket Hussey stumped b Collingwood 0
Ugly. The only word to describe Hussey's horrid hoik.
8.1 overs - Aus 54-2 Wicket Warner lbw b Collingwood 33
Ooooh, rough decision for Warner.
8 overs - Aus 54-1
Clarke brings up the Aussie 50 with a push into the covers for a single as Luke Wright, a man who looks as if he should be a shop assistant at Hollister, is summoned for his first over of the day. Again, no filth on offer as the Aussies fashion six from the over.
7 overs - Aus 48-1
With the end of the powerplays, Collingwood brings himself on to bowl his brand of jiggery-pokery cutters, one of which bites the surface and turns sharply past Watson's bat for a wide. Still, no gifts for either batsman to launch into the stands, which may indicate this pitch is not quite as flat as previously thought.
6 overs - Aus 43-1
Watson attempts to smear a short of a length delivery over long on, but doesn't get enough bat on the bat to clear the head of Ravi Bopara, who takes a simple catch at at mid-on ad out comes Michael Clarke. Warner continues his savage biffery, clearing his front foot to smear Broad through cover, where Paul Collingwood fails to stop the ball from rolling away to the boundary for four.
5.1 overs - Aus 35-1 - Wicket Watson ct Bopara b Broad 11
Borad's got him.
5 overs - Aus 35-0
A switch of ends for Sidebottom, who replaces Anderson from the Stretford End. Good over, no sniff of length for Watson and Warner to tuck into, and the duo can only deal in five singles.
4 overs - Aus 30-0
After one Sidebottom over, Collingwood opts to mix things up like a blind postie and introduces Oval hero Stuart Borad (as he was unfortunately hailed in a double-page spread in the Independent on Saturday). The openers nibble singles and doubles as Broad maintains the ideal Twenty20 short of a length line, only to see Warner shuffle outside his leg stump and scythe his final ball through backward point for four. Borad can't believe it.
Kev, Newcastle, TMS inbox:
"Afternoon. Could you just remind me, who won the Test series?"
3 overs - Aus 23-0
Warner clips a straight delivery off middle stump from Anderson through square leg for the first boundary of the day (sorry). The New South Wales basher attempts to drill two short-pitched deliveries through his favourite midwicket area, but somehow manages to spoon the ball over the fielder's head on both occasions after rattling the splice of the bat. More control this time from Warner, who rolls his wrists and adds a couple to the deep midwicket boundary from a slower ball.
2 overs - Aus 12-0
Ryan Sidebottom - remember him? - steams in and pitches the ball up to Watson in an attempt to extract some wobble. Scratch that, the Notts left-armer bangs down a loopy bouncer which the left-handed Warner attempts to upper cut over third man, but the ball clears his bat by a good foot or so and a wide is called. Warner edges the very next delivery past second slip down to third man, where Luke Wright makes a sliding stop to prevent the ball from crossing the boundary. Twelve balls and no boundaries, decent start if you ask me.
1 over - Aus 6-0
Belter first up from Anderson, who beats the outside of Watson's edge with a ball which holds its line outside off stump. Warner tucks a short delivery off his hip behind square leg for a couple before watching a bouncer sail high over his head, a delivery signalled a wide by umpire Richard Kettlebrough, making his international debut. A frantic single from Watson sees a relatively sedate start to the game.
Out come Aussie openers Shane Watson and David Warner, who walloped 83 off just 43 balls on his Twenty20 international debut earlier this year. He hadn't played first-class cricket at that point. Having watched that innings, I would suggest bolstering the midwicket area... James Anderson to bowl the first over. Vamos.
Steve, Nuneaton, text 81111:
"Colly probably used a double-headed coin borrowed from Del Boy Trotter."
A few new names to get acquainted with in the Australian side, including wicketkeeper Tim Paine, nicknamed "Kid". Having just seen a picture of the Tasmanian, he looks like he should be playing with toy cars in a sandbox. Guess which one of the Aussies has the moniker "Diggler"?
Them Aussies lead 2-1 in the Twenty20 stakes against England. Their last meeting was at the inaugural World Twenty20 in South Africa in 2007, a match which Australia comfortably won. However, the tourists have lost the last five of their Twenty20 internationals, so theoretically, they are about as good as the Walton-on-the-Naze Retired Milkman's Fifth XI right now. Theoretically.
Sharp emails from Mark
, who have very kindly pointed out that if the coin lands on the Queen's head, then Clarkey called correctly. There's just no trap door for a text commentator... Meanwhile, Jobby Jobson
is not happy about Adil Rashid's exclusion from the starting XI. "When will England realise that you need two spinners in T20?" he rants. "Even South Africa drop some of the best pace bowlers in the world for Roelof van der Merwe and Johan Botha in this format."
Typical late August Bank Holiday weekend weather fare at Old Trafford, Paul Collingwood is expecting a shower at some stage. Anyone bought a drink for the any of the Ashes winners in the last week? If yes, any decent reaction? Come on, which one of you ran off with Jimmy Anderson's phone.
Kent's Joe Denly will open the batting for England alongside Ravi Bopara. Meanwhile, Dirk Nannes, the World Cup-skiing, saxophone-playing, Japanese-speaking left-arm seamer who was part of the Netherlands' shock World Twenty20 win at Lord's in June, is included in the Australian line-up alongside the speedy Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson. Delhi Daredevils and Indian smasher Virender Sehwag rates Nannes as the fastest bowler he has ever faced.
Match referee Ranjan Madugalle tosses the coin and Michael Clarke calls tails, only to land on the Queen's head. Paul Collingwood opts to bowl first on what looks like a flat Old Trafford deck, so we could be in for some top-notch boundary plundering. The teams are as follows:
England: Paul Collingwood (captain), Ravi Bopara, Joe Denly, Matt Prior (wk), Jonathan Trott, Owais Shah, Luke Wright, Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, Ryan Sidebottom, James Anderson.
Australia: Michael Clarke (capt), Tim Paine (wk), Nathan Hauritz, David Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Dirk Nannes, Adam Voges, David Warner, Shane Watson, Cameron White.
Like me, I imagine there is a small urn-shaped hole in your lives since the conclusion of the Ashes series last week and not even a glut of Twenty20 and one-day action will quite fill the void. And don't even start with that X-Factor nonsense - unless Graeme Swann turns up with his band Dr Comfort and the Lurid Revelations. Share your lack of five-day cricket misery via the TMS inbox
, text 81111
(with the word CRICKET before your message) or use the 606 website
Hmmmm, anyone else get the feeling that this two-match Twenty20 series is a bit like seeing Joe "Shaddup You Face" Dolce walk on stage after watching an epic four-hour, sweat-dripping, gong-burning, solo-twiddling Led Zeppelin romp?