I originally wrote this blog before Alistair Cook decided to call stumps on his illustrious England career prior the last test at the Oval, Alastair signed off scoring 147.
To bookend his career with his century in his first innings at Mumbai, I was extremely lucky to have been there on the 4th day which was charged with much emotion. Never have I experienced so many standing ovations in sport! It was one of those “I was there” moments – he achieved many records but to play in 160 consecutive tests is remarkable. The numbers he has achieved are in the history books. It’s only when you take a few minutes to think about the history of our beautiful game then you remember the greatest English batsman who have gone before. From the very first test at the Oval when WG Grace scored 152 against the Aussies in 1880 since then we have had batsman with the likes of Hutton, Jardine, Hammond, Hobbs, Sutcliffe, Barrington, Compton, May, Boycott, Gower, and Botham to name a few. It’s when you see names like those you realise what he has achieved – top run scorer of all time! I was at MCG when he had been going through a baron spell but scored 244. Personally I think the only way to say thank you to Alastair Cook would be to offer him a knighthood! The emotions did not end there, James Anderson taking the last wicket with the last ball to become the leading wicket taker for seamers. I would like to think he will be close to 600 by the end of the Windies tour an absolutely great achievement!
After a 4-1 victory against India albeit a bit faltering, but a highly competitive test series played in a great spirit which will surely live in the memory for so many reasons. A script like no other can only enhance test cricket in India and show here that test Cricket is very much on the up. Sam Curran had an outstanding test series. As a Surrey member and having seen quite a bit of him, I’m sure he will turn into one of England’s great all rounders but I feel he will end up being better with the bat!
Our attentions are now firmly on the winter series in Sri Lanka, and who has the job of trying to follow the chef at the top of the order, and then the eagerly awaited tour of the West Indies
The Sri Lanka tour is continuing to be a big success with packages selling well. So if your interested in joining myself and Mathew Hoggard we still have spaces available.
So, on to the Caribbean…….we already have some events planed, Catamarans, beach cricket, and our inaugural client cricket match hosted by Kenny Benjamin at Liberta CC in Antigua and another in Barbados hosted by Desmond Haynes at Carlton CC. We also have a golf day hosted by Richie Richardson and a beach party at a brilliant venue In Antigua. This promises to be an extremely popular tour, we do expect to sell out, and have been inundated with phone calls and emails for this tour so please don’t dwell and wait or you might be disappointed. We have always had great tours to the Caribbean and this year we are raising the bar even further to make it a tour of a lifetime in the Caribbean ! So please join Sara, Richard, Dominic , our celebrities and I in the West Indies in 2019!😊
All the best