OTHER than Andrew Strauss’ form and Stuart Broad’s bowling tactics, the main talking point at the Rose Bowl over the weekend was the rain.
There were mutterings of fans being upset because they did not see enough cricket and there was a lack of urgency when it wasn’t actually raining.
Let’s get one thing straight, there was a lot of rain during the Test match and the players’ safety is paramount - I have played on a wet outfield and no matter how many spikes you have in, it’s a dangerous place to be.
But I agree that there seems to be a lack of urgency when it comes to clearing the ground of water. I went to Lord’s about four years ago to watch England v New Zealand and saw about eight overs of play.
But I remember distinctly that when the rain stopped, nothing happened for 10 minutes.
Then the umpires strolled out, had a look around, take 15-20 minutes deciding play would start in half an hour - and just as the players came out - it would rain again.
It was so frustrating, in the time between the rain stopping and the time it took to make a decision on when to start play again, they could have got four or five overs in.
When you are watching cricket on Sky, they always focus on the groundsman getting his staff ready when rain is due to come. They all seem to know when the rain is coming - but none of them seem to know when the rain is going to stop.
They should be poised to pounce and get the covers off when the rain has come to a halt.
Granted, they have a lot of equipment to shift, but they also have a lot of staff to deal with it.
As soon as the rain stops they should be out there with the umpires making an informed decision.
On Saturday morning at the Rose Bowl, play did not start until 11.20am - but the players were on the outfield training before that.
If it’s safe enough to train on, then surely it’s safe enough to play on.