by Father David.

I was hopeless at sport. I still have a school PE report saying: “He is geared wrong for this activity”. But I am very fond of cricket. From a distance. At school, I was always made to be the scorer, which I did very efficiently; it kept me out of harm’s way. And I enjoy trying to explain to “foreigners” the mysteries of our elusive game. They are amazed to discover that a full match lasts several days, includes stopping for tea, and cannot be played if it is raining – in England! And “in” means out, and “out” means in.

The cricketer’s Bible is ‘Wisden’s Almanack’ which includes every possible statistic but which also records strange occurrences, some in warmer climes than our own. Did you know that in a Pakistan/South Africa Test, the ball passed between two stumps without touching them?

Faith and cricket surely have similarities. We wait for results which never seem to come. Great spiritual enterprises begin with high hopes and crumble into disaster or farce. And much of our time is spent in arguments, misunderstandings, and preoccupations with trivia. And yet it survives!

The T20 competition has finally begun, I, your substitute, am now standing down, and Father Chris, your new captain, takes to the field.