I had to slog away all day and until gone nine in the evening in the office. In the afternoon I got BBC Radio 5 on the internet and worked to the accompaniment of the commentary on the test match (cricket) between England and Australia at Cardiff. The last forty minutes of the match were tense and thrilling stuff. At lunchtime, England looked set to lose, but towards the evening the two tail-enders, Jimmy Andersen and Monty Panesar, managed to hang on and deny Australia’s attack for the last 69 balls to secure England an improbable draw. It was great entertainment. Afterwards, though, I was wondering how one could justify such a description about a draw to somebody who knew nothing about the game. It’s a good illustration of the depths of cultural identity. To most red-blooded Englishmen the word ‘cricket’ immediately conjures up images of village greens and the crease and the wicket and rollers and the rope boundary and whites and pads and willow bats and white-painted screens and tea and sandwiches and cakes and beers and Wisden and Almanacks and umpires and a secret shared vocabulary and gentlemanly applause combined with the occasional piece of extraordinarily violent and vicious behaviour with a rock-hard leather-coated ball. I’d better stop there; I’m beginning to sound dangerously like John Major.