Shiv's brand of dogged determination

Shivnarine Chanderpaul is said to be the hardest working of all the players who are chosen for West Indies in his time.-AP

Chanderpaul looks on style as an irrelevance and he is so in love with cricket that he will travel any distance to see a game that sounds interesting. Over to Ted Corbett.

July 2: I am fond of Glasgow, but just 24 hours after a terrorist attack on the airport I walk through the plastic curtains, the puddles and the police signs and cannot forget the smell left by the fire. It is also pouring with rain and the hundreds of policemen are head to foot in heavy weather gear. “The people I feel sorry for,” says my taxi driver, “are the middle aged, respectable couple who will by some mischance leave their car in a No Parking zone and return to find that it has been blown up as a suspicious vehicle.” That is a typical Glasgow take on disaster; they are a sardonic lot much given to black humour. The rain turns into a storm, ruling out any possibility of play in the charity match between India and Pakistan under the watchful eye of the Prince of Wales, a royal much given to goodwill and the preservation of the environment as he waits for his turn on the throne. What a pity that all his hard work is undone by terrorists; what a shock that those same terrorists turn out to be doctors who — or have I got this wrong? — ought to be tending the sick, not trying kill anyone. Something — is it the same bug that hits half the Indian team in Belfast? — makes me very ill indeed during the night and I never get as far as the ground.

July 3: Weather experts say that last month is far from the wettest month of all time and rank it no higher than ninth since records begin. Well, you can fool me. It is not just cricket and Wimbledon that offer to close the roof. Not f ar from Trent Bridge there is a performance of a Gilbert and Sullivan show which is played in the open air by actors who have to carry umbrellas on to the stage but, showing all the stamina and persistence which any cricketer will admire, finish to huge applause from an admiring crowd.

July 4: Once again Shivnarine Chanderpaul produces his own brand of dogged determination to fashion a winning total for the West Indies. He hits his seventh one-day hundred which may not compete with Sachin Tendulkar’s 42 but whi ch is still a considerable achievement in a side as unused to winning as West Indies. I hear that he looks on style as an irrelevance and that he is so in love with cricket that he will travel any distance to see a game that sounds interesting. Most Test players will travel a long way to avoid watching a match. Shiv is also said to be the hardest working of all the players who are chosen for West Indies in his time. He grows up in Guyana where playing cricket day after day is always possible. He makes it to the international side in 1994, plays an understated support role as Brian Lara hits 370 in the final Test and during this tour of England reaches 7,000 Test runs. He rarely talks about his own performances but I have a feeling that a wonderful honour is coming his way next spring. Remind me to keep you posted.

July 5: It had to come to an end. Twenty20 has been so popular over the last five years, with some gates of 10,000 spectators, with a good press and more young fans that it is a shock to hear that umpires feel threatened, players are c oncerned about being attacked and that dressing rooms are broken into. Peter Willey, who is both the most popular English umpire — and who is strong-minded enough to drop out of international umpiring because he did not fancy all the travelling — and a character brave enough to take on Ian Botham at his most fearsome, asks the authorities to arrange protection for him and his mates. Robert Croft, an experienced off-spinner and captain of Glamorgan, says it is time the players ask for protection too. What a pity all that fun turns sour.

July 6: How good is Stuart Broad? There is a heated debate in the press box the other day when various former players point out deficiencies in his action. I ask whether his background provides all the writers with easy introductions a nd a focus point every time we open the laptop. Stuart’s father is Chris Broad, like his dad he is easy to identify because he is 6ft 6in with a mop of fair hair and his name alone gives the headline writers the easiest time they have since George Best first comes on the scene. Names make a big difference in life. They can be damaging if you happen to have the same name as a villain; but if you have a name that fits with your job you may expect an unexpected boost. Take a look at the names that roll across the screen at the end of a television programme. There is a sound engineer whose name always captures my attention: he is Johnny Noise. The other applicants for his job never have a chance.

July 7: Where must Paul Collingwood field? That is the question of the week since captain Collingwood, the finest backward point in the world, moves to extra cover where he says he can keep in touch with his bowler. In fact he seems to be in no man’s land, neither able to talk to the bowler as Michael Vaughan does from mid-off, nor to worry batsman as he lurks just out of sight in the region of deep gully or backward point where he pulls off some blinding catches. Why does he not take a leaf from the instructional manual which Ricky Ponting uses and field where he is most effective? Ponting runs down the pitch if he wants to talk to the likes of McGrath, Warne, Lee and Clark but that does not happen very often. Such is the self-confidence of that Australian side that he does not need to teach them how to bowl. England’s attack is younger and may need a few more instructions but Collingwood is not the most demonstrative of captains and in the last week I rarely find my eyes drawn to him as mine are to Vaughan and his wide-brimmed hat. It is an old family saying that if you want to get on you must buy a big hat and Collingwood may do well to follow that advice too.

July 8: The sun comes out. Let us hope it stays fine so that Lord’s can record another first. They are staging the archery when London hosts the Olympic Games in 2012 and next month they rehearse with teams from England, Ireland, India and China. It will be the first time anyone from China appears at the Nursery End. Just wait until the Chinese take to cricket. Why not? It is surely less complicated than mahjong, less wearing than table tennis and after a limited overs game you certainly don’t want another an hour later.