Leicestershire v Somerset
Gloucestershire v Somerset
In 1990 or thereabouts Cricketer Magazine carried a piece about a man who had seen every county play every other county, home and away in the county championship. Being by nature a ticker of lists this aroused my interest and I decided that to attempt a watered down version of this feat. No sooner had I got started than things got a little more difficult when Durham were admitted to the competition in 1992 and further complications arose with the advent of two divisions in the early years of this century. The task I set myself was to see each county play every county at least once and as at that time I could only claim about 15 scalps and the target was 153 matches there was a long way to go.
I have made reference to my pursuit of the '153 club' in the blog on several occasions but not recently, for it has been three years since I saw Derbyshire v Lancashire, leaving me just the four games in the table at the top of the page outstanding and after two blank seasons Warwickshire's relegation has presented me with the opportunity to reduce my target to just two. This Sunday Warwickshire will play Gloucestershire at Edgbaston and all being well I will be there. Annoyingly it is the only occasion on which these two will meet this season and a further irritation is the clash with Scarborough but the weather forecast suggests there will be play and under Winn's law one ball is enough to justify another tick in the book. Keep your eye on twitter at 11:01 on Sunday morning.
Leicestershire and Warwickshire will also meet this season, again just once, at Grace Road on Monday September 10th, this time clashing with the roses match and Durham v Sussex but with Warwickshire seeming very likely to return to Division 1 for 2019 Bears v Foxes takes top priority. So fingers crossed games 150 and 151 in the canon should be in the bag next month. What are the prospects for the other two becoming available? There was a time towards the end of last season when Somerset flirted dangerously with relegation which would have set up all four for this season and arguably they were only saved by men in suits following the arrow incident at The Oval but the west country men are currently second in the table and it would need a disastrous change of fortunes to make them relegation fodder.
My best hope and it is a slender one lies with Leicestershire who lie fourth in Division Two, ten points behind second place Sussex and as they have the Hove men and third place Kent to play to some extent the issue is in the own hands. Champagne celebrations at Grace Road? Don't hold your breath.