I’m aware of the Ashes going on at the moment, Down Under, because it’s all over the British papers I read online and the BBC Podcasts that I listen to. My maternal grandfather used to both watch cricket on BBC 2 and listen to coverage on the radio, which is unusual for a Scot. As a result, all I need to hear is the opening few bars of Soul Limbo by Booker T and the MGs, and it’s 1978 and I’m in my grandparents’ living room.
Anyway, last night I thought I’d try listening to the Five Live coverage over ‘t Interweb and it was much as I remembered: a lot of talk about nothing in particular, and then some commentary following an audible crack of the bat in the background. Actually, that’s not true, in the 70’s they didn’t blather on as much.
It’s a different style of writing too. Here’s a snippet from the BBC’s story about yesterday’s play:
They resumed on 51-2 but Australia’s seamers made life very difficult for Paul Collingwood and Andrew Strauss and sure enough the breakthrough did not take long in coming.
In the fourth over of the morning Collingwood, on 11, was enticed into a loose shot by Glenn McGrath and the chance was snaffled by Hayden at gully.
And then from the Guardian:
If there had been a gruesome predictability about England’s loss of two wickets in the final hour of play on Thursday night, there was a measure of surprise about the first wicket to fall yesterday. Paul Collingwood, whose double century and limpet-like 22 had won such admiration at Adelaide, went in the fourth over of the morning, playing a shot of doubtful provenance to a shortish ball from Glenn McGrath and perishing to a fine gully catch by Hayden.
I mean, I get the general idea because I understand a little about the game, but still. It’s like reading reports on rugby, it seems like there’s still some kind of class difference about who writes about it, or at least in how they address their audience. Richard Williams of Guardian (for the quote is his) certainly seems to have upped the ante a bit compared to his footy coverage… perhaps I’m baked, but it seems that way to me anyway.