Morning Jagadish, morning everyone
Thanks Jagadish and Ganesh for providing me with this opportunity to be England's 'representative' on Cricket24x7 for the Ashes series. Like the England team, I'm hopelessly inexperienced compared to my hosts going in to this tour. I'm also on the wrong end of a 3-1, and please don't let that
be like the England team.
As Jagadish said
, I won't be watching the series on television. The main disappointment in not being able to watch the series isn't missing the action, because I firmly believe that TMS provides superb coverage. Having listened to some of the Champions Trophy matches they covered, I'm looking forward to seeing if they can bring back Damien Fleming for the Ashes, who was one of the best recent ex-players I've heard commentate in a long while.
No, the main reason I'll be sad to miss television coverage is the gadgets. It's always exciting when new ones turn up, and Sky have some beauties ready for this series. Following on from the success of such technology as the Red Zone to show the line of the stumps, one innovation I'm sure everyone will be looking forward to is the Chump-cam (starring Ricky Ponting). Simply by pressing the red button on your remote, you'll be able to see in exciting close-up the head-scratching, the chin-stroking, and the look of general bemusement on Punter's face. Observant viewers may also be able to make out Shane Warne captaining the side in the background.
But that's not all. There's also the Rickometer, or 'Ricko', to count Geraint Jones's fielding lapses. This will also showcase the same split-screen technology of Ricko's brother Snicko, but this time to show the anguish in Chris Read's face as Jones drops another clanger. You can also hear the super-slowed-down version of Read saying 'why, Duncan, why?'
Finally, I am pleased to report that they managed to get Gawkeye ready in time. Designed to measure the bafflement in the England batsmen as they face Shane Warne, it was touch-and-go whether the new cameras had wide enough lenses to contain Ian Bell's eyes. Thankfully they got that sorted, and viewer should prepare to be amazed as the Gawkeye view shows just where Andrew Strauss thought the ball was going to finish, with a simultaneous rendering of the real ball spinning viciously back onto his stumps. From point.
It'll be a shame to miss all of this by listening to the radio, but I'm sure the videos will turn up on Youtube in due course anyway. I'll be sure to post them as soon as I find them. Enjoy the series!