For some of us, cricket is by far the most important sport that has even been created. Certainly we are probably in a minority and in fact many ‘non cricket’ people will look completely amazed when they realize that people do actually follow the whole of a five day test match. Personally I follow many sports but cricket is something special to me and oddly the only one where I actually prefer to listen to it on the radio.
There’s something about cricket that lends itself to perhaps using your imagination slightly. You can hear the word’s – ‘glorious cover drive’ and your mind can create the scene in your head, you don’t need a Sky action replay – the description is enough. However cricket is a Summer sport in the UK most of the time and unfortunately the best matches always seem to clash with my Summer holidays.
What could be better than lazing by a pool or beach in the hot sun, a cold beer at hand listening to the dulcet tones of Geoffrey or CMJ on the Test Match Special. Unfortunately this isn’t as straight forward as it seems because it’s actually quite difficult to access from outside the UK. Of course most sports shows are broadcast over the BBC and BBC iPlayer website although for licensing reasons – you can’t listen to most of these when you’re outside the UK. So that scene on a Spanish beach or hotel suddenly becomes rather problematic as you just can’t listen to TMS abroad using this site.
The BBC does this with most of it’s online content, reasoning perhaps that because you’re not physically in the UK then you don’t have a TV license. Well I do and I also go on holiday abroad so let me have my cricket! Fortunately there’s a solution but it’s a bit annoying having to use it, you just have to bounce your computer connection through something called a Virtual Private Network. This sounds quite geeky but it’s actually fairly simple process – just a click a button and you can connect to a UK based server and listen to Test Match Special Abroad without a problem,
It’s annoying but works, there was hope that this situation would be changed – the EU was going to force digital service providers to make their content available to paid subscribers (like license fee payers) wherever they happen to be in Europe,. However Boris Johnson and his Brexiteers seems to have buggered that all up.