Thank God for the Web. How else could I have done what I did a few minutes ago?
It all started this morning. I was doing my snooze-awake thing, a critical technique practised and refined over years of really important business meetings. You know the one I mean. When your eyes are open, one ear is cocked attentively and tuned to the right channel, and the rest of you is fast asleep, ready to spring into action as soon as your name is mentioned. That’s what I mean by snooze-awake.
So there I was. Snooze-awake, with the cricket on in the background; India versus Pakistan at Eden Gardens; there was nothing really happening, India had just declared, and Pakistan had yet to come out. The expert commentators were out in their droves. And then someone said something.Â He said that it looked like VVS Laxman had scored a century consisting solely of ones and boundaries.
I sprang awake. And a part of me went “wow, could that be true?”. So I resolved to check it out, which, thanks to the web, I can now do. Easily. So I went to Cricinfo, got to this page containing ball-by-ball text commentary for the entire Indian innings, and laboriously went through every ball Laxman faced, all 178 of them. And it was true. VVS Laxman scored his 112 all in ones and fours.
I wonder how often that has happened before. And how I would find the answer to that question. Any budding Bill Frindalls or Wendy Wimbushes out there?
Incidentally, I understand that India managed to achieve an unusual sequence in this innings: 111/1, 222/2, 333/3, 444/4, 555/5.Â Again, I wonder just how often that has been done.
For those of you who don’t follow cricket, all I can say is it’s never too late. The sound of willow on leather. The sound of harrumphing moustaches and gentle snores. The sound of the Barmy Army and of calypso cricket. The sound of Eden Gardens in full cry.
Cricket. A game of sounds. And numbers.