A washout

Trip Start Jan 05, 2012
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
Julie's house

Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Friday, June 15, 2012

I took the afternoon off and drove to Birmingham to meet Julie at work, where she gave me a ticket to the T20 (aka 20/twenty) cricket match between Warwickshire and Worcestershire at the Edgbaston Cricket Ground. For those who don't know, T20 is a short form of the game where each side bowls a maximum of 20 overs which often results in exciting battng, competitive bowling and athletic fielding. I'd never seen a T20 match before and this one, being a local derby and therefore full of rivalry promised to be a good one.

The omens weren't great because it had been raining most of the week and there had been a fair bit of rain during the day but there is always an effort to get some play in these matches. I turned up a the ground at about 15:45 because I had a conference call about work to attend (yes, I did say afternoon off) at 16:00. I dialled in from the car and within seconds the rain startedand it looked like it was serious. My call lasted about 90 minutes and the rain continued for more or less the whole of it, stopping just before the call finished. I dug out my old Lancashire County Cricket Club umbrella (because although I was ostensible a neutral at this map I know where my reall alliegances lie) and walked into the ground, collecting my free Bears flag, inflatable cricket bats and boundary card on the way.

I secured some good seats at the end of row CC (my initials, to make it easy for me to remember if I wandered off) in the Eric Hollies stand and sat down to wait for Julie and watch the efforts to get the pitch into a playable state.

There were pools of standing water on the playing area, which is never a good sign in cricket but the wickets were well covered and they had the marvellous mechanical mopper out. This is a marvelous thing and worth watching for 15 minutes or so. It's like a minature steam roller with a driver. It is driven up and down and presumably sucks up the water that the rollers squeeze out and when it is full it is driven to the boundary where the collected water is expelled in a torrent lasting as surprisingly long time, over the rope.

Many hundreds of gallons were mopped up and sprayed out and the puddles soaked in but the sharp showers kept coming and sometime after Julie arrived the inevitable happened and the match was called off without a ball being bowled, which was a disappointment for the fairly large crowd. On the plus side they did confirm that we could use the tickets for any other Warwickshire home T20 match and on Tuesday they are playing Northamptonshire, which is Julie's home county. Fingers crossed.
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