To the medically and psychiatrically qualified, these symptoms can only mean one thing. FB has been attending indoor nets. They offer a cruel reminder of the passing of time. The lights that seemed so bright just last year seem that bit dimmer - surely the staff can clean the shades at least once a year. That bouncing run up of old barely bouncing and to describe it as a run is probably contrary to the Trades Description legislation. Fielding practice seems guaranteed to produce only a couple of broken fingers rather than hone those keenly honed reflexes and panther like silken movements in the covers. It is all hugely enjoyable. Thank the Lord for Radox.
FB has been road testing his new bat for the last couple of weeks. An imposition on his precarious finances made necessary by the wanton destruction of his previous timber by a youthful bowler at the end of last season. The new blade, a replacement long handle Gray Nicoll Nitro, arrived at Christmas time and has been subject to several extended innings in front of the wardrobe mirror prior to its formal inauguration. Everything looked good.
However FB is sad to report that he has been sent what is obviously a defective instrument. For his 2 sessions at the nets have produced a range of red marks down the inside edge but none anywhere near the middle of the blade. He will therefore have to consider parcelling this bat up and sending it back to the makers with a request that they replace it with a bat that works.