Shamik Das


Sunday, June 05, 2011

Quaint, quirky, classy... The majesty of Lord’s

Lords-in-the-sunshine-England-Sri-Lanka-03-06-11

LORD’s in the sunshine, for a Test match, white fluffy clouds above, a perfect pitch below, the world’s best players, the best ground in the world... is there a more beautiful sight?

The current match, the second Test between England and Sri Lanka, is well poised, the visitors 255 runs adrift with nine first innings wickets in hand, following Tillakaratne Dilshan’s unbeaten 127 off only 166 balls, described by Scyld Berry in The Sunday Telegraph as “outstanding in his shot execution - if not always in his shot-selection”.

A man to watch - especially if you’re in the Pavilion...

MCC-member-hit-on-the-head-in-Pavilion-England-Sri-Lanka-Lords-04-06-11

The peerless Andy Zaltzman describes the carnage:

“Dilshan hoists Swann into the Pavilion. Clonked an MCC member on the head with it too. Imprisonable offence in the old days.”

He can console himself with membership of the most exclusive, most undeniably unrivalled club in the world, at the most special place in the world.

As Berry said:

“...if there has been a hero in this game - an English hero, that is, to go alongside Dilshan - it has been Thomas Lord, for laying the foundations of a special occasion.

“This match has been as good as a Lord’s Test in the second half of the season, the sun shining, the crowd at full capacity, spectators grazing on the Nursery or in the Warner garden, the band playing at the intervals.

“It has not been heaven, but it has been a haven, an enclave removed from an increasingly troubled world, or a world with ever more people who are troubled. Well played, Lord’s, and those who run it tastefully well. Just get a bit more pace in this pitch.”

Just seven weeks and counting to that midsummer Test, which will be even better than this one, England v India, the top teams in the world; a fervent away crowd, not a spare seat in the house... There’s no place in the world that can compare, no place I’d rather be, from morning bell to evening close, Lord’s is, quite simply, the greatest place on Earth.

Cricinfo: Live ball-by-ball text coverage of day three
Test Match Special: Live ball-by-ball audio

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