I have managed to watch quite a bit of top flight cricket this summer, including several matches that featured “firsts”.
Although, in a season of “firsts”, I did miss a “last”.
Three Women’s games, including a T20i, and a “first” for Middlesex Women playing their first home match at the Home of Cricket — they were the visitors for the game with MCC Women in 2018, but hosted Surrey Women in the London Cup T20 this summer.
A personal first — returning to Worsley Bridge Road, now Kent’s ground at Beckenham but previously the home of Lloyd’s Bank FC, for my first visit to the ground since the late 1980s.
Another first, for the first day of Ireland’s first Test with England.
On a remarkable day, England were bowled out for 85, then dismissed Ireland for 207, before Jack Leach ended the evening on 0* as nightwatchman.
Of the 20 wickets that fell on the first day, I saw only 16 — the other four coincided with visits to the Academy and to the Museum.
Two First Class matches at “Fortress Chelmsford”, as Essex completed a perfect 7-from-7 record in the County Championship.
The shot at the top of this page was taken at close of play of Essex’s final home game of the season, after Essex wrapped up victory against Surrey by an innings and 40 runs in just three days.
Yes, I did go to Chelmsford and Lord’s on 29th May — bright sun in the morning, but low cloud, drizzle and rain for the London Cup T20 in the afternoon.
In a season of firsts, I also missed out on a “last ever” evening at the Oval.
With the Kia Super League being replaced in 2020 by The Hundred, the match between between Surrey Stars and Southern Vipers was to be the final KSL game at the Kia Oval. I sat outside in bright sunshine at 6pm, but earlier rain caused the match to be abandoned without a ball bowled.
All round, a great summer…and I didn’t even get close to the World Cup, nor the Ashes!