Round these parts, we spend quite a lot of time talking about how much we love this thing of ours that we love so much: why we love it, how we love it, what that love means. That loving it is really part of loving ourselves, however strange and unpalatable that sometimes feels. To each other at least, we are wholly known.
Well, we are now, because “all this” has shown us an entirely different aspect to everything we thought was true: you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone … and come back. Over the course of this Test-match summer, we’ve been part of two wonderful series played by three wonderful teams … and yet it’s not really that is it, rather the simple knowledge that our friend, our teacher and our love is there with us and for us, caring for us, sustaining us and detaining us precisely when we’ve needed it most.
And now this is it. So, thank you West Indies. Thank you Pakistan. Thank you England. Thank you umpires. Thank you ECB. Thank you Sky. Thank you BBC. Thank you broadcasting staff. Thank you groundstaff. Thank you medical staff. Thank you medical experts. Thank you hotel staff. Thank you Lancashire. Thank you Hampshire. Thank you anyone i’ve forgotten. Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you so very bloody much. Thank you.