I hadn’t realised that, among his many other correspondents, Keith Flett spends his time writing to Test Match Special. While waiting for play to start at 11, after morning rain, the commentators have just read aloud his recent missive, which challenges the opinion of BBC weatherman (and, if memory serves, beardie) John Kettley. Apparently he has argued that the ball swings largely owing to meteorological factors, but the BLF insists that the ball swings better when heavy humid overcast conditions are combined with hirsute bowlers. “John Kettley has given only half the story”.
“There’s nothing to do right now but grow a beard”, says one of the commentators, possibly Graeme Fowler. Let’s hope play starts soon, and that the Aussies don’t go off when a cloud passes over the sun, if there’s any sun. (Test Match cricket in September in England is, in fact, a stupid idea. Presumably the assumption when the fixture was arranged was that the Ashes would have been decided by Old Trafford, and what happened after that didn’t really matter.)