Monocolumn: Pray Up! And Play The Game
While Pakistani cricket lurks under the shadow of corruption and international cricket’s integrity looks in jeopardy, one match, boasts a certain purity.
Monocolumn is Monocle’s daily bulletin of news and opinion. Catch up with previous editions here.
While Pakistani cricket lurks under the shadow of corruption and international cricket’s integrity looks in jeopardy, one match, played in the lean shadow of Christ Church spire, Southgate, boasts a certain purity. On a sunny afternoon in late summer in that most cosy, leafy north London suburb, yesterday’s Church Times cricket final restored some faith.
In this, the Cup’s sixtieth year, virgin finalists Lichfield took on the diocese that lost in the first final in 1951, Bath & Wells, a side seven times the bridesmaid at this competition. And it is a competition. “Don’t be fooled,” says Church Times editor Paul Handley. “Today you’re watching sportsmen first, parsons second.” And you can see that. You wouldn’t guess that you’re watching assorted vicars, bishops and archdeacons tense as springs in the slips, striding down the track to dispatch a loose ball for four. You wouldn’t think that the good-natured, greying turn-out would be so (politely) partisan. Would you?