Back in the running
Bumble blogs on the late drama at FP t20 Finals Day and how Alastair Cook can get back in the runs.
Last Updated: 17/08/10 3:17pm
It seems chaos is guaranteed when you get to Twenty20 Finals Day.
There was all sorts of drama as the final between Hampshire and Somerset went down to the final delivery - and Somerset could have avoided defeat if they'd known the rules of the game.
Daniel Christian had a runner for the final ball and that meant he had to stay in his ground. The fact he ran meant Somerset should quite legitimately have run him out. The rules are quite clear on that.
Everyone will have noticed that the Hampshire players ran onto the pitch and were sent off because the umpires were waiting for Somerset to run him out. They can't tell the fielding side what to do and after waiting for long enough, they awarded the game to Hampshire.
I've seen this happen years ago. Ole Mortensen of Derbyshire had a runner, but hit the ball and started running along with his runner and the non-striking batsman.
They took a leisurely single and Peter Willey, who was standing at gully, told the fielder with the ball to throw it to the keeper. The fielder was confused, but did as he was told. Willey told the keeper to take the bails off and said 'howzat'.
Mortensen was straightening his pads and was baffled when the umpire (I'm certain it was Merv Kitchen) gave him out. He protested in his broad Danish accent: "How can it be out? I'm in, he's in, he's in, we're all ******* in."
Kitchen simply pointed out that he should be in at the other end.
It doesn't surprise me that professional players don't know the rules; it's the same in football and rugby. However, this isn't an obscure rule; this is straightforward. It was drummed into me by the coaches and senior pros when I was a player.
People tell me that it would have been a bad way to end finals day or argue that it was gamesmanship. Absolutely not, it's a straightforward law of the game and is like any other dismissal, even if it's one you don't see often.
If you don't understand it, then understand this: the RUNNER does the RUNNING. It's not complicated, is it?
The late show
I didn't leave the Rose Bowl until 11.30pm after a very, very long day.
Personally I think that's too much. I'd prefer two semi-finals at home venues and a final at Lord's. I think that would be a better day out for the fans.
People were still trying to get away when I was leaving and I don't think that's any good for a family day out.
But the day started in amusing fashion with all the commentators arriving in the A-Team van.
It took us about eight takes to get it right. One time I banged my head on the roof of the van and another time I couldn't resist saying: 'I loved it when a naan comes together (I don't think Hussain, Atherton, Knight and Allott appreciated that).
Stars of the show were Jos Butler and Samit Patel. The 19-year-old Butler is a cracker and I know England want Patel if he can get himself in shape. He was as good as anybody on Saturday.
I'd also like to mention Kieron Pollard's horrific injury. He was hit in the eye by Dominic Cork and quite rightly our producer did not show it on television. I'd like to wish the lad all the very best in his recovery.
We'll be at The Oval this week and I expect the score in the Test series to become 3-0 to England.
Pakistan should be a better side with Mohammad Yousuf, in the line-up, but will be weakened with Kamran Akmal back behind the stumps.
Meanwhile Alastair Cook has retained his place in the England side, but the lad waiting in the wings is Michael Carberry. He's a very fine player, a good fielder and he has played for England before. England won't lose anything if he plays.
Cook is still battling like mad with his technique and a bit like a bad golfer, there's too many moving parts. Both feet are moving, his head's moving, his body's moving and he's using his hands to try and get himself out of tricky situations
From Ponting to Tendulkar to Vaughan to Trescothick to Strauss, there's not a lot moving when the best batsmen are playing. Just stand still and watch the ball.
But I wouldn't put it past Cook to be top scorer in this game. Surrey is a good place to bat and if you can't score runs there, then you can't score anywhere.
He's played on two pretty average pitches recently. As an opening batsman facing the new ball on a fresh pitch, you'll get one with your name on it.
He has a great opportunity at The Oval and if he bats for an hour he should be over the worst.
Cheeky so and so
Finally, I've been getting abused on Twitter by some cheeky kid who has got a problem because I didn't sign his book on Finals Day.
I signed thousands of autographs on Finals Day and I wasn't rude to anybody, so I don't appreciate this geezer telling me otherwise.
He reckons he asked me at 10.45pm, but I had to be on air. It may only take a few seconds, but I can't afford to be even 20 seconds late into the commentary box. Do you want the whole world to wait while I sign your autograph book?
I'm always happy to sign anything for anybody - and I will do again at The Oval this week - but you have to understand that I'm there to work!
He wants an apology, but I've told him he isn't getting one. Turns out he's only 16... get yourself to bed!
In a previous age he'd have got a clip around the ear!