Never the Same

The ICC's belated but completely correct decision to finally award the 2006 Oval Test to England is one that Bill Frindall would have approved of.

The death of the 'Bearded Wonder' came as quite a shock. I'd last heard him on Test Match Special from Mohali before Christmas, and he was just one of those people who you expected to go on and on and on. Although he'd missed a few overseas tours in recent years and had given up scoring ODIs, I think I'm right in saying that nobody else has scored an England Test in this country on BBC radio since 1965, while one of the tributes I read stated that he'd scored 377 Test matches, which, when you think about it, is a hell of a lot of cricket.

Like any English cricket follower of my generation I grew up listening to TMS, and the laconic, perfectionist, occasionally waspish but hugely knowledgeable Frindall was simply part of the furniture. I never met him but have clear memories of seeing him coming in and out of many a ground - Lord's and the MCG to name but two - weighed down by what always looked like several suitcases of reference books, many of which he'd compiled himself.

It's the cliche of cliches, but it's true to say that TMS, which resumes from Kingston this week, will never quite be the same again


Anonymous said...

Dear Brian. I found your site about a month ago and am planning to read from start to finish. It's taken some time up until now, but I think that you've slowed down a little in recent years so I'll catch you up at some point! Fantastic to read your posts and have my memories stirred. This caught my eye because I was lucky enough to speak to Bill Frindall at the Centurions dinner held in 2008 to celebrate Ramprakash's hundredth hundred. He would definitely have approved as we had an animated conversation about just how very wrong it was to change the match result to a draw. Absolutely lovely chap. I was very sorry to hear of his death fairly soon afterwards. What a life though! Keith.

Brian Carpenter said...

Hi Keith,

Thank you very much for this comment, made nearly ten years after the post, which must be some sort of record! It's funny how time changes your perception of things - although I don't think TMS is what it was, that has more to do with some of the newer voices and the later loss of CMJ than the lack of Frindall. In my view, Andrew Sampson is probably an even more remarkable statistician and scorer than Frindall was, but the fact remains that Frindall came from the generation (also including Arlott and Johnston, Bailey and Trueman) that made the programme what it was.

I hope you enjoy the other posts, and I'll be happy to read and respond to any comments you'd like to make. It's indeed the case that I haven't been posting as much in recent years, but I tend to feel that the quality has been better in recent years, even if the quantity is nowhere near as great.

Cheers for now,


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