Irish Eyes are Smiling

They weren’t laughing but they were smiling. It may be St Patrick’s Day on Saturday but Ireland started the celebrations early by not losing their very first World Cup game. Somehow, Zimbabwe managed not to win an unlosable match. But how exciting for Ireland to feature in only the third tie in World Cup history. For a combination of reasons, I’ve been doing some private research on cricket in Ireland.

Firstly, I was a intrigued about the Irishman, Ed Joyce being selected for England. Then it was announced that Australia would play a three game One Day series against India, in Ireland, in June 2007. Cricket appears to be on the up in Ireland. But do the Irish people really care about cricket? Around the same time, a new colleague joined us at work – a young lady from Ireland. As is traditional, as she was introduced to staff, I asked “Do you like cricket?”. I can’t remember the answer. Perhaps there was none. But a week or so later, Karen told me that she doesn’t like to watch cricket but she does like to play cricket. I said “What! Do you mean to tell me that you play cricket in the backyard in down town Dublin?”, and the answer was “yes”. There you have it, Ireland may not be about to become cricket’s next super power but cricket holds a place in the heart of the people.

It’s just a darn shame that Ireland couldn’t take that final wicket a few balls earlier. I needed that point to get back into the tipping comp after the Windies dramatic form reversal.

In other news, a new award has been announced. The ICC has decided to formalise the “most hated personality in world cricket” award. Since 1996, Arjuna Ranatunga has so dominated this area that it was thought to be a waste of time having an annual event. However, recent happenings have shown that some others have some form. The award will simply known as “The Sunny Award for Miserable Cricket Personalities”. No guesses who the inaugural recipient will be.

And finally we have the new “spotted” section.

Spotted (while watching a replay on my mobile phone on the way home): Anderson Cummins opening the bowling for Canada. Previously last spotted playing his fifth and last Test for the West Indies in December 1994. Anderson is 41 in May this year. He’s older than me for crying out loud. Although I have to admit he looks pretty fantastic.

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