Cricket: Lara lies in wait
Sunday 22 May 1994
Warwickshire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57-0
THESE things are sent to try us. One look at the overnight scoreboard and the locals were preparing to invade the County Ground for what they hoped would be more than just a glimpse of cricket's latest purring run machine. Thanks to the weather, though, Brian Lara could pack away his pads for the day and all that dried up was the anticipated flood of spectators.
Warwickshire, their two openers in residence, had set the scene perfectly - Lara next to bat and the prospect of another three-figure contribution to come from the West Indian left-hander. Never mind Somerset's bowlers might be the ones suffering.
No, the attraction was to see whether Lara could continue making progress towards at least equalling another of cricket's first-class records, the one relating to the most hundreds made in successive innings. The figure stands at six and is shared by C B Fry, who made his mark at the turn of the century, Don Bradman in the 1938-39 season and Mike Procter in the 1970-71 campaign.
Lara, arriving in this country on the back of his mammoth 375 against England in last month's Antigua Test, had a word for his new employers. 'I hope they expect a lot from me,' the 24-year-old Trinidadian said. Of course they did and in no way have Warwickshire been disappointed.
Lara first took 147 off Glamorgan at Edgbaston to round off April and, when Leicester visited his new home ground earlier this month, he registered 106 in the first innings and an unbeaten 120 in the second. With a total of 748 runs from his last four innings behind him, Somerset appeared ready for the taking.
And while another Lara century may have grudgingly been conceded, no one would have begrudged Somerset their prospective gate takings. A five- figure sum was said to have been washed down the drain yesterday, and now the county pray that the clouds lift in time for what they hope will be a near sell-out crowd of 6,000 to watch this afternoon's Sunday League match.
In the meantime, following yesterday's washout, the best Lara can hope for is that Somerset, with a lead of 298, set Warwickshire a reasonable chase tomorrow and that either Dominic Ostler or Roger Twose are dismissed fairly rapidly.
Andy Caddick, Somerset's Test bowler, should be back in action this week. Caddick, England's leading wicket-taker on the West Indies tour, is missing the Warwickshire game with a shoulder injury. But the Somerset coach, Bob Cottam, described the problem as 'not serious'. Somerset's next Championship match, against Lancashire at Southport, starts on Thursday.
Latest in Sport
England vs New Zealand second Test match report: England’s bold boast turns into hot air and humiliation
Fifa corruption: Sepp Blatter's right-hand man Jerome Valcke 'sent' $10m payment to Jack Warner in letter from the South African FA
England 'favourites' to host 2018 World Cup after Sepp Blatter resignation - Qatar and Russia under pressure
Michael Schumacher: Bernie Ecclestone reveals why he can't visit former F1 champion because he 'doesn't want to see him like that'
Brendan Rodgers' job safe for now but Liverpool owners plan for improvement
- 1 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 2 Charles Kennedy 'had better judgement drunk than many sober politicians' says Ian Hislop
- 5 We have six months to save the world, says leading economist
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Ideal candidates for the role m...
£25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A 6-month part-time contract (24 hours a...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Trainee Vehicle Inspectors / Pu...
£12000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Trainee Vehicle Broker is req...