Unmitigated Cricket

For those who cannot wait for the start of the Perth Test here is some film of the 1948 Lord’s Test, England v The Invincibles.

Dave Allen has been in touch with Third Man to share a gem of a discovery.  A British Council Film, Cricket (1948).  Narration by Richardson (Ralph) and Arlott, sounding a little like Bond, James Bond, even down to chain smoking Chesterfields.

It’s subject?  22 yards, 4 rods, poles and perches, 1 chain.  It is more than just a few glimpses of Bradman batting, Hutton fielding, Compton on a ‘sticky’ and bucking, bridling Bill O’Reilly.

It is Unmitigated England.  A celebration of ‘wistful yearnings never quite fulfilled’.  Bat and ball making.  A homage to cricketers of long ago.  A glimpse of coaching at the old County Ground in Southampton where Third Man’s coach, Arthur Holt, is seen as a very young man doing what he did best.  Where else would Arlott take the cameraman?

It is all a long way from Perth, December 2010.  Australia win by hundreds.

Watch it here,  all 17 glorious minutes of it.

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