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Welcome to the 3000th Test

Test cricket moved into the 2000s this summer. What will the game be like in a few hundred matches time?

Alan Tyers

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Stuart Broad celebrates Abhinav Mukund's dismissal, England v India, 1st Test, Lord's, 3rd day, July 23, 2011
Stuart Broad works on his perfectly-perpendicular-robot-arms move for the future © Getty Images
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Teams: England

3000th Test: Match Report from the year 2061
The much-anticipated 3000th Test ended in farce today. The ICC had hoped the showpiece match would be contested between the USA and China, but despite pleading, guarantees of a huge slice of TV rights (China), and promises of free soda and Chinese government bonds (America), both countries declared themselves "not remotely interested in cricket. Like we keep telling you" and went to play basketball with the West Indies instead.

Instead, England once again stepped into the breach. The Test stalwarts have contested 975 of the last 1000 matches played in the game's longest format, and arrived in Qatar on the red-eye flight the day after the conclusion of their seven-month home Test series against Patagonia.

"Some of those Patagonians found the New Year's Day conditions on the Isle of Harris pretty challenging," said England's boyish skipper Alastair Cook. "But in the end it was a good workout for us, and who knows, if Patagonia's top players hadn't been off competing in IPL 808, it could have been even closer."

"And fair play to the Patagonians: it's a short career (although not for an English batsman who has bunkered down into the Test team, obviously) and they have to take the paydays where they can find them."

The landmark Test itself, contested between England and England A at Lord's (recently transported brick by brick to the emirate after a successful bidding process overseen by the reanimated corpse of Sepp Blatter, head of the ICC's Anti-Corruption and Lunch Division) was a muted affair. With cloned versions of Jonathan Trott dominating both middle orders, batting - on a "drop-in" pitch of rolled Victoria sponge - tended towards the attritional.

The match appeared to be heading towards a draw when Cook threw the ball to his Enforcement Droid Series 209 Bowling and Tantrum Unit. The robot produced a fiery spell of short-pitched bowling interspersed with glaring from its twin head-mounted laser sockets and a ticker-tape print-out of obscenities; reaching a crescendo of bad-tempered beeping and whirring when a low catch by Ian Bell (grandson of the elegant, if occasionally frustrating, England and Warwickshire batsman Ian Bell, and son of the elegant, if occasionally frustrating, England and Warwickshire batsman Ian Bell) was adjudged to have touched the turf.

After reviewing the catch from 173 camera angles, in four dimensions, and even probing Bell with a Waugh-o-tron lie detector projection ram, it was ruled that the evidence was inconclusive. "You have 15 seconds to comply and give him out," barked the Enforcement Droid Series 209 Bowling and Tantrum Unit, before short-circuiting and stomping off to the third-man boundary with smoke coming out of its CPU. It was fined half of its match fee, but Cook insisted: "It's just a young droid learning its trade, and we wouldn't want to lose that aggression." A draw leaves the series nicely poised at 0-0 with 94 to play.

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Comments: 10 
Posted by chiggers on (September 5, 2011, 15:12 GMT)

@Gerry-the-Merry 'Tendulkar will score his 100th century in the coming one day series. in the end, that is what really matters.' - bang goes that theory...

Posted by   on (September 3, 2011, 2:56 GMT)

804 IPL in 50 years!!! SRT would have scored 100 test hundreds and 100 odi hundreds by then... dravid would have faced 1,00,000 balls!!!

Posted by   on (September 3, 2011, 1:16 GMT)

A billion? Make it 2.5 billion people.

Posted by chiggers on (September 2, 2011, 10:07 GMT)

Of course SRT will still be playing - which Indian selector is going to risk the wrath of a billion people by dropping him?

Posted by rahulcricket007 on (September 2, 2011, 9:39 GMT)

nice article really a nice one . by2061 only england will be playing test cricket.

Posted by Kashi0127 on (September 2, 2011, 9:24 GMT)

Even more important would Sachin Tendulkar be still playing then!!

Posted by Gerry_the_Merry on (September 2, 2011, 8:17 GMT)

Tendulkar will score his 100th century in the coming one day series. in the end, that is what really matters.

Posted by KALPANA. on (September 2, 2011, 8:08 GMT)

its the 3000th test match.. strange to see nothing written about sachin, warne, ponting and sreesanth in the article.

Posted by KALPANA. on (September 2, 2011, 8:05 GMT)

that was too much to handle.. god knows where you guys get these hilarious ideas from.. well done.. made me laugh.

Posted by chiggers on (September 2, 2011, 7:38 GMT)

You didn't mention - will SRT have scored his 100th international 100 by then? :)

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Alan Tyers
Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.

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Alan TyersClose
Alan Tyers Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.
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