I'll take the Aberdeen Evening Cricket League instead

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I'll take the Aberdeen Evening Cricket League instead

Notapor cigspriced » Lun Sep 07, 2020 5:52 am

The ECB with its usual old-fart pomposity claims to have invented Twenty20 cricket. Not to be outdone, Lalit Modi and Co argue that they subsequently "reinvented" the format, creating the cricketing-acid-trip extravaganza that is the IPL. In which occasionally, between mid-over adverts, 90s pop anthems, dancing girls and commentary clichés Newport Cigarettes Carton Price, one might be lucky enough to discern cricket balls being dispatched to all parts of the subcontinent, owing largely to the fact that the wickets are about as lively as a mass funeral. Every self-respecting club cricketer will know, of course, that both Lalit Modi and the ECB are wrong. Twenty-over cricket - admittedly minus dancing girls and all the other jazzed-up surrounding fanfare - has been around at grassroots level for decades.

Aberdeenshire, which boasts more cricketers per capita than any other region in the UK (except possibly Yorkshire), is the site of a long-running 20-over league: the illustrious Aberdeen Evening Cricket League (AECL). Apart from the format, the AECL and the IPL share very few other similarities Newport Cigarettes. The AECL is played predominantly on local council-owned pitches, where "rolling" is a verb associated with cigarettes, not wickets. Sightscreens are provided by the backdrop of public toilets, junkies, military fitness groups, cyclists and other assorted local Aberdonian flora, fauna and fungi. Covers… well, why anyone would need covers with our arid north-east climate is beyond me. Apparently the council shares that opinion.

Not that I am complaining. It's not everywhere that a whole league can be run on cricket pitches that are basically used for free, and to be honest, all these factors just add to the charm of the AECL. The league is consequently traditionally won by the, shall I say, more "experienced" teams. The old (sorry, "experienced") boys of Aberdonian cricket know how to play these wickets.

It's no good running in full pelt, putting your young back and shoulder muscles into a short-pitched delivery in a hostile attempt to give the geezer at the crease a good scare Marlboro Cigarettes. Inevitably the ball is going to stop on impact with the wicket and sit up nicely to be delivered to your cousins on the continent by a short-sighted pensioner wearing football boots and using a piece of driftwood older than, well, himself.

Light may also add certain complications. The matches usually start at any point after six on a Tuesday night, and thus may sometimes not finish until well after nine. It is therefore imperative that captains win the toss and bat first, as we would never dream of stopping a game for lack of light Marlboro Menthol. Many a match has been finished in gloom that would make the 2000 Karachi Test seem like a Las Vegas lightshow.

This league epitomises all that is great about casual cricket. I have played in a game where overthrows top-scored, seen a batsman stumped after being dragged off the wicket with glass shards in his eye (top-edged one into his specs), and witnessed batsmen run six runs when fielders lost the ball in the murky fog. The AECL never fails to provide extraordinary feats of genuine cricketing idiosyncrasy, which no amount of IPL television-rights money could ever buy. I would much rather be standing out in gale force winds, stinging precipitation and gathering gloom fielding for the Inn At The Park XI against the Gentlemen Players of Rubislaw XI at Duthie Park Stadium than watch a crass, corporate, callous, plastic, pretentious, pompous, over-sponsored, overpaid, overkilled International-Mega-Ultra-Premier Twenty20 concoction.

Still, I'd gladly sell my cricketing soul for one of those dancing girls.

Move on with the times, my friend. Cricket cannot remain in sacred time or else it will die out as the longer versions become less and less attractive to today's youngsters who have other attractions to follow. The IPL is great and has even captured the imagination of people who never took an interest in the game. I agree its a bit over-commercialised but its fast and exciting and youngsters as well as adults love it, but Of course there will always be some exceptions.

Wouldn't it be great to have a Dutchman in the IPL - perhaps Ryan Ten Doeschete of Essex. He certainly could perform better than a few other overseas players that are there as he is aggressive and hard-hitting as well as a pretty brisk bowler with some movement. It might also inspire a few young kids in Holland to take up the game or strive to become a professional at it, hoping one day themselves to be playing in the IPL and earn a great living from it.

Every day, there was different team, and it changes through out the Inning as more kids come to join. There were no stumps instead only two bricks and simply gap between them, thats our stump.

No pad, because its just rubber ball. Two bats only which will be shared by 11 others. So team of around 6-7 players per team so total 11-12 kids.

Our pitch was no grass it was just mostly hard dirt, and one side there was road. Boundary was far enough, there was no runs behind the wicket, and there were buildings on offside so best way to get runs was to hit straight or midwicket. I turn out in a similar league, The Len Smith League in Richmond in London, and I have yet to see matches at any level more keenly contested than those between neighbouring pubs around the green. As Rene notes, defensive shots are a novelty, timetables are rarely observed and the local pitches look like they are maintained by the US air force from about three miles up.

Ah the itchy grass roots of cricket, where legends are born and tales told and retold getting more and more unlikely with every passing pint. I turn out in a similar league, The Len Smith League in Richmond in London, and I have yet to see matches at any level more keenly contested than those between neighbouring pubs around the green Cigarettes Online. As Rene notes, defensive shots are a novelty, timetables are rarely observed and the local pitches look like they are maintained by the US air force from about three miles up Cheap Cigarettes.
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