County Championships 2013

This entry was posted on Monday, April 8th, 2013

Leather on Willow on Silence

We are all familiar with the old question of the tree that falls in the forest, and a sound it may or may not make. But what about the willow that slaps leather in an empty ground? Does that make a sound? We may be about to find out.

With county cricket ranking somewhere alongside public executions in terms of its attraction rating in modern Britain, one senses the only interest left in this competition is how long more said dying breed can keep wheezing. Rather like the Conservative Party or Nelson Mandela.

But whilst there is life in the old boy, there is betting in it too. The marquee signing of the summer has unquestionably been Graeme Smith at Surrey. And if that isn’t exciting enough, old Ricky Ponting is pitching up in June to join him too. Vikram Solanki has also thrown in his lot with Surrey, and Chris Adams knows how to coach teams to the title. 8 is huge value – get right on it.

The second division sees slightly less value, with Hampshire and Lancashire deservingly hot favourites to fill the top two berths. Saeed Ajmal should be far too classy for Division Two batsmen whilst Simon Katich will make many, many runs at this level.

In the catchily-titled Clydesdale Bank 40, it is also hard to look beyond the two favourites Somerset and Sussex, although the loss of Murray Goodwin from the latter is significant.

And if you fancy a T20 tip, have a punt at Essex at 14s. Go on. It won’t hurt.

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