Stuart George

Posts Tagged ‘The Brit Oval’

Not the view from the boundary

In Cricket on June 6, 2010 at 6:33 pm

The usually fearsome Bill Gordon, the groundsman at The Oval, must have been in a good mood today.

Spectators were allowed onto the playing area, allowing us a rare glimpse of what the ground looks like from a player’s perspective.

The Oval has a vast playing area, noticeably bigger than either Lord’s or Edgbaston, both of which I have seen from the pitch.

Today’s match between Surrey and Leicestershire was played on a pitch towards Blocks 1-5 on the south-west side of the ground, with the boundary rope pulled well in by the Peter May Stand on the opposite side. But even the more central pitches, which I suppose are used mostly for international matches, are still a long way from the boundary.

By the way, Surrey lost (again). They were thumped by a very average but very noisy Leicestershire side by an innings and 60 runs. This is probably the worst-ever Surrey team. Not that I support them – I’m a Warwickshire boy. (They lost to Somerset today – sob sob.)

But England beat the mighty Bangladesh – hurrah!

Brown Caps vs. Foxes

In Cricket on May 6, 2010 at 7:02 pm

Foxes are normally only seen at cricket grounds when Leicestershire is playing.

But this afternoon at The Oval, where I managed to sneak in the last hour of play (and a win for Gloucestershire!), the final overs were enlivened by some big hits from Chris Tremlett – and a fox wandering audaciously around the outfield.

The small crowd cheered it on to chase the birds that it could never quite catch – like the Surrey fielders chasing cricket balls, in fact. When it was bored of of trying to eat birds, Fantastic Mr (or Mrs?) Fox decided to have a stroll around the Pavilion, even going up the stairs to the first floor balcony. It was still there when the match ended at 6pm.

I have never seen a fox at a cricket ground before, and certainly not in central London.

But I have seen (Pink) Panthers at Lord’s, Bears at Edgbaston, Eagles at Chelmsford and Sharks in Brighton! English cricket has truly become Animal Farm.