Test Match Sofa
Wettest summer for 100 years: the details
By Andrew Hignell
It's official: 2012 has been the wettest summer for exactly a hundred years. Ironically, the summer of 1912 also saw visits by the Australians and South Africans to the UK with the triangular international series being badly hit, while county games were also severely disrupted.
A century later, the county game has again seen massive levels of disruption with the frustration being shared by the cricketers themselves, by club officials and the game’s loyal supporters.
Each county, in theory, plays sixteen matches in the LV= County Championship, equivalent to a potential maximum of 384 playing hours. Yorkshire – the raining champions of 2012 - lost no fewer than 36 per cent of this playing time. Their total of 138.25 lost hours was also over a hundred more than their total in 2011, so it was something of an additional triumph that they managed to dodge the weather enough to secure promotion back to Division One on the final day of the season.
A similar pattern of major disruption has also been experienced by other counties, with an unprecedented seven others topping the hundred mark, and two more coming within an hour of joining this rather unwarranted century club.
Without taking anything away from the magnificent achievements of Warwickshire and Derbyshire, the winners of Division One and Two, perhaps the most telling statistic in this year’s Championship was that they were the teams who lost the least playing time in their respective divisions.
(Figures represent hours lost in 2012, 2011 and days lost in 2012)
Warwickshire 74 21.75 5
Somerset 99.25 31.75 4
Middlesex 69.75 51.25 3
Sussex 77.50 12.50 6
Nottinghamshire 96.75 44.25 5
Durham 106.25 41.75 10
Surrey 102.75 21.75 11
Lancashire 117 15.25 9
Worcestershire 91.75 34.25 5
Derbyshire 82 37.75 7
Yorkshire 138.25 32.25 13
Kent 88.75 23.00 4
Hampshire 110 46.25 7
Essex 112.75 35.75 10
Glamorgan 103 33.25 11
Leicestershire 99.25 20.50 5
Northamptonshire 94.75 26.50 9
Gloucestershire 115.75 35.00 12
Other weather-related statistics from the 2012 season are:
• Yorkshire’s total of 138.25 hours of lost play is the highest amount of weather interference since the competition was split into two divisions in 2000, breaking the record previously held by Worcestershire who lost 124.25 hours in 2007.
• Eight counties lost over a hundred hours of potential playing time in 2012. The previous worst aggregate had been three counties losing over a hundred hours in 2000, 2004 and again in 2007.
• Nine counties – equivalent to half of the participants - experienced their wettest-ever summer of two-divisional cricket. These were Durham, Essex, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Lancashire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire, Surrey and Yorkshire.
Weather experts have calculated that such a wet summer can be expected to happen, on average, once every 57 years, so county cricketers, their administrators and followers will all be eagerly looking forward to business as usual in 2013.
*Andrew Hignell is Glamorgan's official scorer
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