About

Praise for this blog:
“a refreshing read… the Ashes Tourist blog offers a different persepective” – Michael Atherton, The Times, 9th January 2014
“the best argument I can think of for an England victory” – Gideon Haigh

I started this blog in autumn 2013 as a way to record my two-month trip to Australia for the 2013/14 Ashes series. In those days I was a PhD student who had run out of funding (and patience) for my degree. Cricket, and particularly the radio commentary of Test Match Special, the BBC county coverage and Guerilla Cricket (then Test Match Sofa) had become my constant companions during my years of study, and so I decided to give up my flat, put my possessions in storage and spend all my savings on an Ashes tour. It was the best decision of my life, and one I thoroughly recommend to anyone in a similar position. You can read the full account of my adventure here.

I got back to a cold British January with no money, no job and nowhere to live. I spent the first few weeks sleeping on the sofas of various long-suffering friends and relatives, trying to finish my PhD thesis (“The Behaviour and Physiology of Meerkats in Zoos”). I was very fortunate in successfully applying for a job with the Government Statistical Service a couple of weeks after I got back to the UK, although security clearances meant the job didn’t start until May. It was based in London, so once I had finished writing my thesis I found a flat-share there and started my new life as a civil servant in the capital.

Now, two years after I left for Australia, I am well settled in London. I have membership at Middlesex CCC and spent much of my last summer in the Lord’s pavilion, and I commentate whenever I can on Guerilla Cricket. I spend most summer evenings at the Proms and have somehow become an avid Gilbert and Sullivan performer, as well as training to be an instructor for Riding for the Disabled and spending far too much time in West End theatres, royal palaces, National Trust properties and anywhere else I can waste my evenings and weekends.

In the interrim I have occasionally posted pieces on this site, mostly about cricket statistics, but now I am preparing for my second great cricket tour, this time to South Africa, and so I am reviving this blog. Welcome! I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I am sure I will enjoy experiencing it.

Katy (@ithilienorthend on twitter)

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2 thoughts on “About”

  1. Hi – I realise I’m 20 months late to find this, but I came across this blog after reading some tweets about the Change Cricket protests at The Oval, and having had the misfortune to have also sat through the 2013-14 Sydney Test in person, surrounded by baying Aussies (definitely should have picked 2010-11 for my first visit to Australia…), thoroughly enjoyed your account of the tour. Going for an entire series seems to be the best way to do it, might have to do that in the future! From a purely selfish perspective, I’ve also been interested in some of the stats posts you’ve written or linked, as I work building models for the betting industry, and there are some good ideas floating around there!

    Also, given your obvious love for Paul Collingwood, I wonder what your thoughts are on my personal favourite England player of recent years, the ever-loyal and hard-working Matthew Hoggard? (Plus this – http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cricket/32105879)

    • Hi, glad you enjoyed it! I had a great tour, although, like you, met a fair number of baying Aussies. Many really lovely ones too, though. I would definitely recommend going for the full tour if you ever get the chance – it was just about the best two months of my life! I’m envious of you building models for betting companies – they are the only ones who will fund this kind of fun exploration. I’ve not had enough spare time recently to do much on cricket modelling, but I hope to come back to it in the winter. I liked that bit of stating about Hoggard – the peak of his career was a bit before my time, but he’s a great cricketer.
      Incidentally, it looks from your email address as though you’re from the same college as my housemate!

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