Just in

My weekend

Observant readers will note the omission of “Sporting” in the title. This was because “family” might be the better word. We had invited my brother and his family for the day to our coastal home. They number ten and with other guests this was 13 in all. I had agreed to this day as the Sunday August bank Hoilday has has become the traditional day of their state visit.

I heard on TMS of various cricket fans around the globe following the Test in extraordinary circumstances. I was tempted, as I took my portable radio to the amusement park, to offer my own. By the trampolines I admitted truthfully to fatigue and my brother and returned to base camp for a nap.

Try as I could I could not stay awake and when I eventually stirred Ben Stokes had won the day by one wicket. Over the years people will forget the Nathan Lyon fumble, the badly taken third review and the Wade diving failed attempt to catch. It was Ben Stokes’s day.

Later I watched the highlights both on Channel 5 and SKY. Alison Mitchell, Michael Vaughan and Mark Nicholas presented this on Channel 5.

Nowadays who works for what broadcasting station is unclear but SKY seem to have exclusive contracts and on that channel Mike Atherton is always worth listening to.

There is something about a captain that means a better grip of what’s going on – Richie Benaud was peerless and I’m impressed by the analysis of Sir Alistair Cook.

Inevitably there will be comparisons with Ian Botham.

Let’s start with the Test stats. Ian Botham had a Test batting average of just under 35, a bowling average of 32 and took 105 catches.

Ben Stokes’s Test batting average is 35, bowling 32 and catches 55.

In my estimation Botham was the better bowler but when his girth expanded hip rotation to achieve full throttle pace was difficult.

Both were anti-establishment, blessed with extraordinary talent, never far way from controversy.

Both the men for the big occasion.

Yet as Tom has written today it takes calmness and concentration to bat all day let alone win a Test single-handed.

It’s been a summer marred by rain but we have now seen 3 quite extraordinary games.

I must congratulate Rory McIlroy in winning the Tour Championship and Fedex.

He criticised the format but I don’t suppose he will be handing back $15 million.

His last major was several years ago but this is this was his third PGA victory this year.

The Scandinavian masters was won by South African Erik van Rooyen whose surname is almost identical to a good friend of mine.

This and his recent form might have induced a small wager but I was on Alex Noren who did not feature.

About John Pargiter

John Pargiter’s biggest claim to fame is his first-ever work experience job, as ‘legs’ (or runner) for Henry Longhurst. For many years he worked in insurance at Lloyds. After retiring he has returned to his favourite sport of golf and is a keen recreational sailor and grandparent. More Posts