View From The Ground - The Rose Bowl, Day Three
It was a frustrating day for all concerned at a sold-out Rose Bowl as the groundstaff and crowd were put to the test with constant rain interruptions. Jim White gives his view from of the third and final Test in Southampton.
Covers were on and off throughout the day which brought some interesting timings for the day. No sooner had the players returned there was a drinks break and when they re-resumed in the afternoon, tea was taken.
All a bit strange to supporters and some ex-England captains too!
Much cheering as the crowd watched the rope being towed by tractors to knock the water off the top of the grass. Every player and groundstaff who successfully hopped over it was greeted with a cheer!
During one break, Batman and Robin took it upon themselves to entertain the crowd by giving the stewards the runaround and upon their exit, the rest of the superheroes left too.
Fancy dress was very popular and a bunch of chickens won the npower best dressed award presented by Mike Gatting.
Chairman Rod Bransgrove must have been grateful for a passage of play without any interruptions as this superb ground has had a lot of very positive feedback.
All around the concourse, there were many impromptu games of cricket from bananas to pirates to the cast of Toad Hall.
Many children took the opportunity to have a bat and bowl while play was suspended and even one of the most local clubs Flamingo CC had a mini-game with a brolly as their choice of weapon. Their resplendent cricket caps with the pink animal to the fore probably meant their Saturday side were a few players down today.
Next to them a team of jockeys in full silks chatted at the Pimms tent as a group of umpires all appeared to be phoning all and sundry.
The Mexicans were in good voice but kept out of the volleyball with a sponsors beach ball under the East stand in the third break for rain, while the Teletubbies appeared to be winning the race to get wet on the outside and wet on the inside!
When play finally was allowed to continue without interruption, both batsman gave the hardy crowd something to cheer and applaud.
Frequent boundaries and good running allowed, Cook scored his sixth consecutive 50 to equal England record, and KP had a welcome return to form.
Two ex-Hampshire and now Surrey players to shine at the Rose Bowl - home-grown Tremlett first on honours board. KP the second? No, although his 14th boundary put England in the lead
All in all, a good day for England and the Rose Bowl.
© Cricket World 2011