Sorry for missing last week. I was deep inside a building at a chemical plant fixing a problem and had no time or internet signal.
Where do we start? The Bob Willis Trophy and Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy were awarded, to Essex and Southern Vipers, respectively. Essex and my very recently beloved Somerset played to a rain-filled draw, but since Sir Alastair Cook’s 172 led Essex to a first innings lead of 36 runs, Essex lifted the trophy. Boo. Somerset worked hard to avoid the draw on day 5, but nothing they bowled at the Essex batsmen worked, and Essex played out their advantage with endless blocking and singles, when it wasn’t raining. It was disappointing to see Somerset, a smaller county with fewer resources, lose this way to big old Essex with their knights of the realm and so forth. On the women’s side, the teams are a little more equitably assigned, although you wouldn’t know it by how Vipers dominated in every area and did again in the final. Charlotte Taylor took Player Of The Match honors with a six-fer as Vipers bowled out Diamonds in the 43rd over and Vipers up by 38 runs. Georgia Adams’ 80 for Vipers led all scorers.
Nottinghamshire survived the weather (only women’s cricket seems immune to English rain in September and October) to win a 16-over final against Surrey to take home the Vitality Blast trophy. Notts knocked off Lancashire in one 11-over semi and Surrey beat Gloucestershire in the other 11-over semi. The whole day was postponed from Saturday to Sunday as a giant blob of rain hovered over the entirety of Great Britain on the original appointed day. The whole thing seemed anti-climactic with the lack of raucous crowds, the canceled mascot race, and the shortened overs and all, but Notts will certainly take it. Captain Dan Christian was the star of the final with a 4-fer and 21 runs off 11 balls to help put Outlaws in the winner’s circle.
The IPL table has Delhi Capitals at the top at 4-1 with Mumbai and surprising Arsey Bees (RCB) tied for second at 3-2. Kings XI Punjab brings up the rear at 1-4.
The England Women finished up a whitewash of the touring West Indies side with a rain-soaked 3-wicket win in the 5th T20I. The West Indies women were never serious contenders in any of these games, and there is a growing gap between the Big 3 women’s teams and all the other women’s teams. I’m not sure what if anything the ICC plans to do about it, and whatever plans they may have had have been largely scuttled by COVID-19, with all available resources moved over to the men’s side to keep them afloat.
The best women’s team in the world by a wide margin, Australia, rode Captain Meg Lanning’s 101* to a stirring defeat of New Zealand in the 2nd of three ODIs in Brisbane yesterday. Australia won 2 of 3 of the T20I’s played earlier. They finish the series with a third ODI, also in Brisbane. Australia will be looking to take 5 of 6 of these matches, and that’s been without their best all-rounder, Ellyse Perry, who is out with a hamstring problem.
The Women’s BBL starts in Sydney on October 24th with a Melbourne derby, of all things. All the games will be in Sydney because of you-know-what, so that’s not that unusual.