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Cricket World Cup: Power Chords and Cool West Indians

7 June 19 words: Nigel Cooke

Week one in Notts was the place in which the Cricket World Cup shot into life, provided unexpected disappointments and the reigning world champions, Australia, paid us a visit.

On the first day of the World Cup the sun sparkled off the bald heads of the men in deck chairs in the Old Market Square. Notts cricketing heroes, Luke ‘Bulwell Bomber’ Fletcher and Samit Patel coached kids on half term holiday in the street cricket area of the fan zone. England’s first win, and that spectacular Ben Stokes catch, was cheered as it was relayed on the big screen.

Day two was our turn at Trent Bridge. Two former world champions, Pakistan played the West Indies. But the Pakistani team forgot to turn up. They were hapless and gave the ice cool Chris Gale an opportunity to knock off half their total on his own, without even breaking into a run. First success to the Windies, and an imperious performance from the king of West Indian cricket.

Monday, day five, Trent Bridge. The England and Pakistan teams both arrived. Pakistan took every chance that the lacklustre England fielders offered, punishing England for their fielding mistakes against a chorus of exuberant and colourful Pakistani supporters. Where was the England trumpeter belting out the Great Escape when we needed him?

England’s march to be world champions has not yet stalled. Both Josh Butler and Yorkshire hero Joe Root, delivered well timed and powerful centuries which made a thrilling contest of a high scoring game. Their downfall was casual fielding and the gift of too many extras; the worry here is that they were beaten by one of the most inconsistent teams in the tournament. Having said that, it is not easy to forget that when Pakistan started as underdogs in 1992 they went on to be world champions, beating England in the final.

On Thursday the West Indies returned to take on Australia. The West Indians aspire to regain their former glories while the Australians are determined to retain their title and dominate the sport. Australia won another close match, only just. Steve Smith and David Warner were booed constantly because of sandpaper gate. Smith appeared unperturbed and made 73 unhurried runs, though Warner barely troubled the scorers. It was the West Indian batsman, Hope who kept his team in the game. This time Chris Gale did not meet the crowd’s expectations as Australian bowler, Starc took 5 wickets.

Finally, I would like to propose a different competition to the ICC. If you have been to one of the games you have probably noticed that you can win your height in a well-known brand of cider? You may have also noticed an annoying electric guitarist belting out power chords. My competition would be that you can win your height in Castle Rock Harvest Pale by knocking the guitarist off his mini stage, with a ball. Come on ICC what do you think?

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