Blowing His Own Saxophone

10th May 2016

Around the World in 2 – a few occasional off-breaks

Each week for ‘Mason & Guests’ I put together a brief summary of cricket events outside the Caribbean, round-up the week’s notable WI birthdays & anniversaries, & throw in a few ‘Did You Know?’ facts:

“Hello! This is David Oram taking you ‘Around the World in 2‘:

“In the IPL the Gujarat Lions remain top; & the tournament’s leading scorer is still Virat Kohli, now with 561 runs. Leading bowler is Andre Russell with 14 wkts at 17.

“SL’s tour of Eng is underway but they’re being badly outplayed by 2nd division Essex in their 1st warm-up. The tour features 3 Tests, 5 ODIs & 1 T20.

“In the County Championship, Tino Best took 5-90 in his 2nd outing for Hants; & Anguilla’s Chesney Hughes hit his 2nd hundred of the season for Derbys. But Spare a Thought for Ravi Rampaul, who took 2 early wkts for Surrey in their current game v Yorks, but then saw Joe Root & Johnny Bairstow add 372 for the 4th wkt in only 67 ovs.

“Meanwhile, Did You Know that Brett D’Oliveira achieved a unique 1st yesterday when he scored 202no for Worcs? He thus emulated his father, Damien & grand-father Basil D’Oliveira in scoring a 1st-class double-hundred – the only instance of batsmen reaching that figure across 3 generations in cricket history.” 

A Few Birthdays & Anniversaries:  

“100 yrs ago today, Alexander Crawford, a member of W’wicks’ championship winning side of 1911, & a capt in a battalion of the West Yorks regiment, was killed in action by shell fire in France during WWI. He was 24.

“Birthdays this week include the 28th today of Antigua’s Orlando Peters; the 25th tomorrow of Raymon Reiffer & 66th of Gregory Armstrong; the 29th on Thurs of Kieron Pollard; the 64th on Fri of Sew Shivnarine; the 57th on Sat of Carlisle Best; the 26th on Sun of Kyle Corbin; & the 34th next Mon of Nikita Miller.

“Tomorrow is the 75th birthday of Aus’s Ian Redpath, who hit 4,737 runs in 66 Tests at 43 with 8 100s. A renowned stone-waller, he didn’t hit a 6 until his penultimate Test in 1976 v WI – & then immediately hit another. That was his final series, & he hit tons in 3 of his last 4 Tests – before retiring to be an antique dealer.

“Another celebrating his 75th birthday on Sat is Nasim-Ul-Ghani, who was Pak’s youngest Test cricketer when he made his debut v WI in 1958 aged 16. He had moderate success as a slow-left-arm bowler; but his finest moment came with the bat, when he scored 101 v Eng at Lord’s in 1962 – having come in as night-watchman. He later served as an ICC match referee.

“Yet another celebrating his 75th on Sun is Sri Lankan umpire BC Cooray, whose decision making was so atrocious on the Eng tour of 2001 that he retired after being derided by both teams, & publicly mocked – he was dubbed by local fans as ‘Bad Call’ Cooray.

“Thur will be the 70th birthday of Guyana’s Len Baichan. A left-handed opener, he played 3 Tests in 1975-76, avgd 46, & scored 105no v Pak – but lost his place through injury; & in the days of Fredericks, Greenidge & Haynes, he never regained it. Between 1969-82 he hit 4 & a half thousand runs in 1st-class cricket with 13 100s at a stellar avg of 51. Such was the quality of Caribbean cricketers in that period who weren’t good enough to make the WI team. He was inducted into the Berbice Hall of Fame in 2012.

“& finally, Mon will be the 40th birthday of Dirk Nannes. A left-arm fast bowler & something of a curio, he was almost 30 when he made his 1st-class debut for Victoria – having earlier studied playing the saxophone, & then concentrated on competitive freestyle skiing. He developed into a T20 specialist, playing in leagues in Aus, Eng, SA, India, NZ, Zimb, SL & Bang. The son of Dutch parents, he made his intl debut for Holland in the 2009 World T20, part of the Netherlands side which bt Eng at Lord’s. Less than a yr later he was opening the bowling for Aus in the 2010 T20 World Cup. A colourful career came to a close in Jan last yr, and he’s since moved into commentary – which he does in English despite being reputedly fluent in both Dutch & Japanese – which he denies. Doubtless he still finds time to ski while playing the saxophone.

“Until next time, this is David Oram saying sayonara.

You can listen to the above round-up here.

The Mason & Guests show is broadcast live every Tuesday from 6.15-8pm ECT (10.15pm-midnight GMT) on Voice of Barbados 92.9fm, and can be heard by clicking on ‘LISTEN LIVE’ on the website page via the link provided. To catch up on previous broadcasts, click on this link to the show’s archives.

David Oram

David Oram is an Englishman following West Indies cricket from Islamabad. When I lived in the region, I was the resident ‘statto’, co-host and sometime presenter of ‘Mason & Guests’ – weekly cricket talk-show, the sport’s leading radio show in the WIndies – hosted by the Caribbean’s principal radio commentator, Andrew Mason. You can tweet me at DavidOram@colblimp1983.


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