From the CEO’s Chair: Jamie Clifford’s Blog, 4th August

Thursday 4th August 2011

From the CEO’s Chair: Jamie Clifford’s Blog, 4th August

I was planning to be at Grace Road today, but given the torrential rain forecast throughout the country decided to stay in Canterbury. It looks like a decent decision, with no play before lunch and the rain apparently still falling. The game though is finely balanced and promises to have an exciting conclusion tomorrow.

I will, of course be heading up to Leicester for the t20 quarter final on Saturday, whatever the weather. What an exciting prospect it is, and I am sure all supporters are looking forward to it whether going to the game; watching it on Sky or coming to the St Lawrence. Knock out games are big days for county cricket clubs and this will be no exception.

Next week is Canterbury Week, and there is the usual excitement about the week building. It is raining hard at the moment, but hopefully this will just green things up nicely and then stay away. The ground is starting to look less like a building site and while we are not 100% complete yet, certainly the ground is starting to look like its old self. Everybody says there is something special about ‘The Week’ and there is no doubt there is. I have enjoyed greatly reading people’s memories of their first Canterbury Week and it does remind us of the great history.

There has been much debate about which Canterbury Week this is. Indeed Howard Milton, Club Statistician, Derek Carlaw, Club Historian and David Robertson, Honorary Curator have been debating it at length. Whilst the Week started in 1842 this is not the 169th week.There was a suggestion that 2011 would be the 163rd (this is based on the 1948 week beingincorrectly recorded as the Centenary). As David, Derek and Howard confirm “1842 (the first) to 1914 is 73 weeks; then 1919 – 1939 a further 21 and 1946 to 2011 another 66. In total that makes 160.” There was no week for four of the WW1 years and six years of WW2. It is very reassuring to have such a wonderful team ofKent cricket knowledge to check such matters.

The India series is not proving to be the quite contest many expected. England have been totally dominant and have played some excellent cricket, the manner in which they fought back from a difficult first day at Trent Bridge was very impressive. I am sure there is more to come though, and with reinforcements India should come back strong, hopefully because there have been glimpses of what a contest it could be.

The Ian Bell run-out controversy got everyone talking and I guess it will be debated for years to come. To me, both sides of the argument are right – Ian Bell was out, but it was a dismissal that didn’t feel right and so Dhoni was spot on with his decision to withdraw his appeal. As many have said, it is this kind of thing that sets cricket apart and we should celebrate it.

Best of luck then to the team for Saturday; enjoy the game wherever you watch it, and do try and get to Canterbury next week for the 160th Week.