My Summer was as busy as ever in spite of deciding to give the Ashes a miss. As well as watching my County, Essex, I went to 13 World Cup […]
My Summer was as busy as ever in spite of deciding to give the Ashes a miss. As well as watching my County, Essex, I went to 13 World Cup matches and was lucky enough to be at the Final. That means that as ever I have a collection of ‘favourite’ photos. Next years’ should be better, I’m actually doing a camera course in the off season. I’m going to start with those World Cup matches before getting to my Essex and other photos in part 2.
My writing has given me a big connection to Pakistan, and my cricket watching has given me a great affinity with Pakistan Cricket. Therefore to a great degree I followed them as a Pakistan fan, my World Cup started at the Opening Ceremony, I was there with the Stani Army; they really made the World Cup an extra special event for me.
The first of my 13 World Cup matches was at Trent Bridge, it was no less than a disaster for Pakistan as West Indies bowled them out for just 105, we were going home by 2 O’clock. Chris Gayle scored 50 from 34 balls, a photo of him is a must in any collection.
Match 2 saw me travelling to The Oval to watch Bangladesh beat South Africa. Bangladesh scored 330 for 6 and restricted South Africa to 309 for 8 in their 50 overs. A brilliant win for Bangladesh but my favourite photos of the day are of South Africa in the field, along with the winning moment for Bangladesh.
Back to Trent Bridge for Match 3 and the match between England and Pakistan. I found myself torn, Pakistan needed a win and I felt a loss for England wouldn’t damage their chances too much. Pakistan batted first scoring 348 for 8. With Hafeez top scoring with 84 from 62 balls.
But, this time, after losing the 3 bi-series ODI’s Pakistan and in spite of both Joe Root and Jos Buttler scoring centuries for England they made 334 for 9, falling just 14 runs short.
Next up for me was another match at The Oval, Bangladesh v New Zealand. This was another great game, but a lower scoring one, with Bangladesh making 244 and New Zealand reaching 248 for 8 in the 48th over.
A road trip was up next for me with 2 matches spoilt by the weather, Pakistan v Sri Lanka and Bangladesh v Sri Lanka at Bristol, for the first I waited most of the day only to have the sun shining as the match was called off. There were still some photos taken that day –
I travelled to Cardiff from Bristol with England v Bangladesh on the menu the next day, catching a film before I went to my Airbnb. I really like Sophia Gardens as a ground, but I didn’t like the fact that I couldn’t see a scoreboard, good job I had phone signal! England scored 386 for 6 with Jason Roy scoring 153 runs from 121 balls. Bangladesh were bowled out for 280, we were treated to a century from Shakib too, he scored 121 from 119 balls. Joffra Archer and Ben Stokes took 3 wickets apiece.
From Cardiff I travelled to Taunton, staying just outside, that meant I didn’t travel back to Bristol for the second abandoned match, I went to the cinema instead I did that a lot on this trip!
Happily the one day it didn’t rain while I was in the area was the day of the match between Pakistan and Australia. Australia batted first and made 307, with Aaron Finch scoring 82 and David Warner 107, they had a first wicket stand of 146. Mohammed Amir took 5 for 30.
Pakistan were bowled out for 266, but that didn’t stop the Stani Army celebrating
Manchester was my next destination after a few rainy days in the Taunton area, with another film seen too! Pakistan v India was my next match, with the special treat of dinner with my Stani Army friends the night before.
As I was at the match as a Pakistan fan this one was a bit of an anti climax. Inexplicably Sarfaraz won the toss and put India in to bat. From a cricket point of view we were treated to a major innings from Rohit Sharma who made 140 from 113 balls and 77 from Virat Kohli from 65. India made 336 for 5 from their 50 overs. Pakistan didn;t really get close, making 212 for 6.
Another day off from the cricket and another trip to the cinema, Odeon Limitless is great! I saw 4 films on this trip. Next up was England v Afghanistan; This was the match where the England batsmen went a bit crazy, in a good way for England fans, not so much Afghanistan fans! Jonny Bairstow scored 90 from 99 balls, Joe Root 88 from 82 and captain Eoin Morgan played an incredible innings making 148 from 71 balls! He was dropped on 28 I think and certainly made the most of it! England finished on 397 for 6. In reply Afghanistan made 251 for 8, with Hashmatullah Shahidi scoring 76 from 100 balls.
It was back home for me after this match and the next one was closer to home, Pakistan v South Africa at Lord’s. That meant an atmosphere almost unheard of at The Home of Cricket!
Pakistan scored 308 for 7 with Babar scoring 69 from 80 balls and Haris Sohail scoring 89 from 59 balls. One of the highlight when watching South Africa is the way Imran Tahir celebrates a wicket, I’m sure he’ll do himself some damage one day! In reply South Africa scored 259 for 9 with Faf du Plessis scoring 63 from 79 balls, Wahab and Shadab took 3 wickets each to help secure a good win for Pakistan.
A first trip to Edgbaston for the summer was up next, to watch New Zealand v Pakistan. Cue another passion filled crowd! I was sitting in the members section which gave me a great view!
The Black Caps batted first and found themselves 83 for 5, along came Jimmy Neesham, he scored 97 from 112 balls and shared a partnership of 132 with Colin de Grandhomme who scored 64 from 71 balls. 19 year old Shaheen Afridi took 3 for 28 in his 10 overs. In reply Pakistan scored 241 for 4, with their star batsman Babar Azam scoring 101 from 127 balls. Lots of photos for this one.
Lord’s was next up, with Pakistan v Bangladesh, that multiplied the sound levels no end! Both sets of fans are incredibly passionate and great fun! Pakistan batted first and made 315 for 9, the centurion this time being Imam ul -Haq, he scored 100 in 100 balls, being out in an unusual way, hitting his wicket. I’d seen Shoaib Malik do it in a spectaular way earlier in the summer, so that was twice, ever for me. Babar fell just short of his century with 96 from 99 balls.
Bangladesh made 221 with Shakib top scoring with 64 from 77 balls. Shaheen Afridi took 6 for 35! This match gave me one of my favourite photos of the summer. Lots of fan photos to start with though!
Pakistan were pipped to the semi-finals by New Zealand. Luckily for me I’d bought a ticket for the semi-final at Edgbaston, which happened to be where England were playing Australia.
Australia were all out for 223, with Joffra Archer trapping Aaron Finch LBW for a Golden Duck, David Warner was out for 9. Steve Smith, England’s nemesis over the summer scored 85 from 119 balls before being run out. Alex Carey made 46 from 70 balls in spite of taking a ball that hit his helmet off!
England made 226 for 2 in just over 32 overs. Jason Roy who’d missed a number of games, top scored with 85 from 65 balls. England were in the World Cup Final!
I had one more ticket left, for the Final! I was incredibly lucky with the ballot! I wrote 2 full articles on this one, so I’m just going to post a couple of photos to finish off part one of my photos posts. In this case, wickets and joy!