Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Glamorgan v Middlesex, RL Cup, Cardiff, 26/07/14

Glamorgan strolled to a comfortable 7 wicket victory over Middlesex as their opening game in the newly formed 50 over Cup got under way in warm weather at the SWALEC Stadium.

The home side seemed unaffected by their exertions in the T20 only the night before as they quickly reduced the visitors batting to rubble at 90 for 8. It was only rescued by a ninth wicket stand of 84 between Neil Dexter and Steven Finn.

The chase was comfortable enough for the Dragons as Jim Allenby scored 70 and Jacques Rudolph 61.

Middlesex's highly promising left arm spinner Ravi Patel

On his way back to England form, Steven Finn


Sunday, July 27, 2014

Glamorgan v Gloucestershire, T20, Cardiff, 25/07/14

On an absolutely perfect summer's evening for cricket, Glamorgan cruised into the quarter finals of the T20 Blast by hammering near neighbours Gloucestershire by 8 wickets with 8 overs to spare, thereby securing a trip to Lancashire next Friday to see who will progress to Finals Day

Bowling first, the Welshmen turned in an enthusiastic and committed display in the field which limited the Bristol side to just 108.

Jacques Rudolph

In reply, Glamorgan made light work of the chase with both Rudolph 44 and Murray Goodwin unbeaten on 41.

Stewart Walters


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Steelhouse Festival, Day 2, Europe, The Answer, Bernie Marsden, 20/07/14

This is a festival which just gets better and better.  Not only that, but this year it was blessed with great weather, despite Met office warnings of the world ending in a violent storm on Saturday afternoon. Instead the only thunder and lightning was of a musical kind supplied by the great bands that delighted the good spirited crowds with classic hard rock over the 2 days at Hafod-y-Dafal Farm in Blaenau Gwent.

The friendly  family feel, the summer fayre collection of stalls, the deckchairs, in fact if you took the sound away (and the black t shirts) you could be in any country park in the UK. Instead it’s a collection of like minded folk enjoying the heavier side of rock in a well organised shindig which is rapidly gaining an excellent reputation amongst the festival going community.

Not only that, the price is right. Too many of us feel ripped off these days by extra fees and charges which simply fleece us. Here at the Steelhouse, the tickets are fairly priced £65 for 2 days, £40 for 1, £10 to camp. I paid £3.50 for a pint of local, real ale (Tudor Brewery), and it was good. When I bought my tickets at the gate with a credit card, the volunteer seemed almost embarrassed to charge me an administration fee of 25p (that’s twenty five pence, Ticketmaster are you reading? Answer – probably not).

Anyway onto the music. We only went on day 2, but the top three bands delivered in style.

Bernie Marsden 
Bernie Marsden is best known for his stint in Whitesnake pre their MTV days, but during that time they produced their best music, and that is what most of us wanted to hear here.

The set is below and it was a combination of firstly, blues based numbers, and then the sing-a-long early Whitesnake classics. Sometimes blues players can disappear up themselves. That didn’t happen here. Marsden is a fine player and he came across as humble and engaging and seemed to thoroughly enjoy his time in Wales.

Top of your World
Bad Sign

Just yo' Fooling
Black Pit

A Place in My Heart
Oh Well

Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City
What's Going On 

Fool for Your Loving
Here I Go Again

The Answer

Regular visitors to this blog will know how much I like The Answer. In fact, we saw them three times on one tour when they supported Whitesnake back in 2006, and my wife has seen them more than any other band.

Fresh from an appearance at Download at Donington Park, they enjoyed glorious sunshine for their set, although this wasn’t necessary for the enthusiastic crowd to appreciate such a talented band. Their latest album, New Horizon represents a true return to form.

Cormac - vocals

With a set mixing numbers from this, together with live staples such as Preachin’, The Answer know their game back to front and always get a warm welcome in a fellow Celtic country. Of course, no Answer show would be complete with Cormac getting into the crowd!

Micky - bass

Paul - guitar

James - drums

Cormac fronts up


Cormac getting down...

.... with the crowd

They are a true fans' band and, as they always do, stayed around for autographs and pictures.
Set list

Guitar Intro
Demon Eyes
New Horizon
Speak Now
Under the Sky
Never Too Late
Memphis Water
Come Follow Me
Comfort Zone

The Answer with a new fifth member on lead lecture and backing spreadsheets

Europe - Headliners

Pedigree, fame, a great frontman, a classic rock sound influenced by the best, all you need for a headline act, and that's what we got with Europe.

They may only be famous for 'that song' by most people in the pub, but they are about much, much more than that. Their albums over the last 10 years or so have demonstrated that they are a serious hard rock act, shaped by the past but living in the present. And much heavier than most people would imagine.

Joey Tempest - everything a rock frontman should be


- delighting the crowd

John Leven and Joey

In fact, the set list draws heavily on recent albums, especially Bag Of Bones, but of course, the best reception is reserved for the tracks from 'The Final Countdown' album, such as Carrie, as we all drift back to 1986.

Riches to Rags
Scream of Anger
No Stone Unturned
New Love in Town
Wasted Time 
Girl From Lebanon
Sign of the Times
Demon Head
The Beast
Rock the Night (incl. Budgie's Baby Please Don't Go)
Last Look at Eden
The Final Countdown

Joey with John Norum

Rock The Night

This is an extremely well-run and well organised small to medium sized festival. Will it ever be Download or Wacken? No, of course not, but that's not the point. It's a throwback to the days of lower cost and better value live music, having a beer in the sun, and enjoying the sounds. It really is well worth a visit.

All pics (c) I.Janes.
But if you want better photographs, do check out my friend NCR Photography Ltd, where professional pics are available to buy.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Glamorgan v Essex, T20, Cardiff, 18/07/14

Glamorgan were blown out of the water by Essex on a warm Friday evening in Cardiff, as their total of 157 was made to look wholly inadequate by the visitors' batting.

Despite some solid scoring from Jacques Rudolph 60 not out and Murray Goodwin 71, it was the blast of big hitting from Kiwi Jessie Ryder 51 off 28 balls, Tom Westley 44 off 38, and a classy 32 not out from Ravi Bopara which saw the Eagles home.

Also, bear in mind that they still had Graham Napier, James Foster and Ryan ten Doeschate to come in, which is quite daunting. They could well have been able to chase 200.

Essex's Mark Pettini

Glamorgan now need to beat Gloucestershire this coming Friday in order to get into the quarter finals, but even if they succeed it would be an away match at Lancashire.

Essex's Graham Napier

Glamorgan's Stewart Walters

Scorecard and report via Cricinfo

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Worcestershire v Glamorgan, Day 1, LVCC2, 30/06/14

There aren't many places at which it's better to watch county cricket in high summer than Worcester and last Sunday was no exception, as the sun shone and a decent crowd attended.

Worcestershire are going well in Division 2 and ultimately ran out easy victors in this game as Glamorgan crumbled on the final day.

On Day 1 however, it was more of an even contest as three Worcs wickets tumbled early including run machine Daryl Mitchell and England man Moeen Ali.

A century from Tom Fell steadied the ship for the home side as they made hay whilst the sun shone through the afternoon.

Hogan to Moeen Ali...

...and again...

Smith to Ali

Afternoon sun

The Graeme Hick Pavilion

Glamorgan's spinners toil...

...as Worcestershire pile on the runs