Monday, 20 July 2009

The Lull

While there is no tennis to watch on the TV, nor any football, surprise surprise it's been cricket and the newsroom today was bubbling before lunch as England wrapped up the second test against Australia.

It wasn't that confident a win really.

England were bossing proceedings on Sunday when they'd reduced the tourists to about 120 for 5. But then there was a doughty partnership which took the score to 313 for 5. That was 209 runs off the victory target.

From a position of overweening confidence to anxiety. Would England snatch defeat from the molars of victory?

Andrew Flintoff hadn't read the script and decided to help England win the test. It was their first victory at Lords against Australia since 1934.

Made for a buoyant newsroom.

The New Goal

I shuffled onto a tennis court the other day to begin the preparation for the 2009 journalists' tournament at Roland Garros. Last year I lost in the first round.

I was out of shape having been in Beijing for a month and out of practice. This year I intend to be only one of those two. I'm not quite sure how much practice I'm going to get but I can at least dedicate myself to avoiding too much excess.

I played the match after going out till late watching a few African bands at a place called Cabaret Sauvage. Indeed the venue was stashed away and it was pretty wild when the bands came on.

One was called Konono No1. Their sound was through some old speakers which had been bought from a failed politician. It was like listening to music in a pressure cooker. Not that I've ever done that kind of thing - though with the hot housing I plan to do on the tennis...

The other band was Staff Benda Bilili who were a group of disabled street musicians. They put out a sound which was pure dance.

Which is exactly what I did. So I wasn't exactly twinkle toes on the tennis court the next morning. Well at least one lesson is implanted: don't go out dancing the night before a match.

Probably knew that anyway.