Anorak News | Test For England

Test For England

by | 17th, January 2005

‘WITH just one day to go in the fourth Test and with the series poised at 1-1, England’s tour of South Africa hangs in the balance.

Trescothick leads the England rain dance

With an overnight lead of 189 (but at a cost of five wickets), the fate of the whole tour will rest with how England’s bowlers perform today both with bat and ball.

Marcus Trescothick was still at the crease with 101 to his name when bad light brought a premature end to proceedings, but yet another mini-collapse has put England in a position of some peril.

They were coasting along at 175-2 when Michael Vaughan nicked one from Shaun Pollock.

Graham Thorpe and Andrew Flintoff followed in quick succession to leave South Africa in with a chance of victory in a match they have always been fighting to save.

“Thus,” writes Mike Selvey in the Guardian, “a game which at times has bordered on the lower reaches of competence is set up for what may yet be a compelling final day.”

And yet it has not been without controversy – the Telegraph says Michael Vaughan is threatening legal action against the ICC after being fined the whole of his match fee for comments he made about the umpires at the end of Saturday’s play.

The England captain wasn’t happy with the consistency of the interpretation of the rules on bad light and said so (in mild terms) after the day’s play.

But Clive Lloyd insisted that making such comments constituted a serious breach of ICC rules – a decision about which Vaughan has no right of appeal.

Had the comments been made by a football manager, one suspects that no-one would have raised an eyebrow.

Certainly, Sir Alex Ferguson would be many thousands of pounds poorer given his ability to start a fight with all and any of his fellow managers.

Alan Hansen is right to point out that “the one common denominator whenever a major argument breaks out” is the Manchester United boss.

And Arsene Wenger has had enough, telling journalists that he will never answer another question on the subject of the red-faced Scot.

“He doesn’t interest me now and doesn’t matter to me at all,” he said. “I will never answer to any provocation from him any more.”

Wenger has enough to worry about with events on the pitch after his Arsenal side slipped to 10 points behind Chelsea with defeat at Bolton.

The Premiership looks to be all over – unlike the cricket in Johannesburg.’

Posted: 17th, January 2005 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink