Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Righteous Fools

The inquest into the untimely death of Tom Maynard was held today at Westminster Coroners Court and a verdict of "accidental death" was reached. Tom was one of our first interviewees here at The Middle Stump, and no one in the cricketing world had a bad word to say about him. Described by the Surrey physio, Alex Tyson as "having all the looks and the talent in the world, without an arrogant bone in his body" a statement from the family also described him as being "sports mad".

Tom Maynard RIP

Monday, 25 February 2013

Phillips signs for Gloucestershire

During last summer we spoke with a young man who was trying to make his name in County cricket playing in the Glamorgan Academy, since then Scott Phillips has come a long way. Last week Phillips signed a deal that will see him cross over the Severn Bridge and turn out for Gloucestershire this season.

2013 County Season on Sky Sports

Sky Sports have announced their County cricket schedule for 2013. This campaign sees 60 live games from the Yorkshire Bank 40, LV= County Championship and Friends Life t20. They will also be at Essex when they host the England side in their Ashes warm-up match.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

The Overseas Superstar...or maybe not?

With today's cricketing news that Ricky Ponting is going to play for Surrey this summer, to replace the equally high profile Graeme Smith when he is absent, it is clear that the Brown Hatters are really going for it this year when it comes to marquee signings. Long gone are the days of the seventies and eighties, when your overseas player stayed for years and the likes of Viv Richards were as interwoven into the fabric of Taunton, as he was Antigua...

The best overseas ever?

Sunday, 17 February 2013

This Charman Man

Marcus Charman is a man with his fingers in many cricketing pies. The Brand Designer from Oxfordshire is the MD of Affinity Cricket, has designed lots of stuff from the cover of Paul Nixon's fantastic book Keeping Quiet to the stickers for many bats including the charity project Bat4Africa, runs the #CricketFamily on Twitter which is a collective of all the cricket clubs, and has just returned from India to watch a bit of cricket whilst looking at innovative ways of producing better and safer cricket kit. He lives, breathes and eats cricket, although combines it with curry too! We caught up with the Chris Moyles look a like and discussed his latest projects. Seriously, if you are going to buy a bat for the coming season I would get your arse over to Affinity Cricket and get one of these rockets!

Marcus Charman with one of the Bat4Africa

The Central Contract

Having a read of a excellent, albeit disturbing article by Paul Bolton in the Telegraph yesterday, I was shocked and surprised by the outcry amongst professional cricketers regarding their earning potential at present.

Are the likes of Shane Watson worth £1.4 million pounds a year?

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

How strong is NZ cricket?

STOP PRESS: New Zealand beat England in a game of cricket.

Does this signal the start of a humdinger of a tour, culminating in hard fought games with high scores and people starting to take note of New Zealand cricket once more?

Ross Taylor

Monday, 11 February 2013

Cricket Lookalikes

After another Saturday evening in the pub listening to my so called 'mates' ripping into me for looking like 'Luis Suarez with a mullet', I took to Twitter and asked our followers to name some cricketers and their doppelgängers. Who knows, Mitchell Johnson may have one that can actually bowl straight? So here goes, some of these are good, some are terrible...

Alistair Cook and actress Tamsin Greig... 
Only one of these will be getting a sweaty box this summer.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Adam Shantry Swim

Adam Shantry is showing some 'Dunkirk Spirit'. He is swimming across the English Channel dodging jellyfish, driftwood, basking sharks and the odd ferry all in the name of the Tom Maynard Trust and the PCA Benevolent Fund, later this year. Adam played in the same Glamorgan team as Tom before a knee injury finished his career in 2011, and the all rounder whose journey in the professional game also took him via Northamptonshire and Warwickshire is now doing this madcap swim, with the help of a couple of his mates. If you read this hilarious chat regarding Tino Best, dodging the Bristol Rovers Gas Hit Squad or the Graham Wagg masterclass in how to distract a well set batsmen, and it gives you the odd chuckle please, please support Adam in his cause. Even if it just a quid or two, and you'd like to see him swim in just a posing pouch in the shape of a horse, give here; www.justgiving.com/swimmingthechannelfortom

Adam Shantry

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Our Keeping Riches...

With Jos Buttler making his mark down in New Zealand the thought suddenly crossed my mind that we have as much quality in the wicket keeping department, as there are bottles of nandrolone in your average Australian dressing room! Often the best wicket keepers when it comes down to pure glovework do not make the side any more as you have to be able to bat but it seems we have plenty who are decent at both. Here we have a look at those past, present and future who are the stars with the gloves in England at present.

Chat Taylor...the best glovemen don't necessarily make the side any more!

Monday, 4 February 2013

The Middle Stump Guide to New Zealand

Aotearoa, to give it the Maori name. This translates to 'the land of the long white cloud' although with today's warm up game being called off in Whangerei, maybe it should be 'the land of the long grey one'. New Zealand is a fantastic country, split into two islands and we are really looking forward to this series. The wine, scenery, the warmth of the people and the culture are all something to behold here, but here we give you the lowdown on Kiwis and have a look at their cricketers.

New Zealand

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Shit Kits

After looking at various rubbish football kits over the past week, we decided to have a little look at some of the worst cricket outfits. We start off with an absolute cracker from Barbados. Suliemen Benn adds to the horror with arguably the shittest lid in cricket.

We take a look at five more rascal garments. Which one is the worst? Have we missed any shockers out? Let us know on Twitter: @themiddlestump or leave a comment.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

BCCI Babies

This week the BCCI acted in their usual childish fashion yet again over the use of the DRS in mainstream cricket. Only Peter Odemwingie may have made himself look as ridiculous this week, but the chairman of the other boards should hang their heads in shame for not having the guts to stand up to this super power. The BCCI is now more powerful than the ICC in our opinion. During the tour of India by England we gained many hundreds of followers of the Indian cricket team, both in India and in England, and the majority are embarrassed by the actions of the people who are supposed to represent them.

The voice of cricket?