The sun gods smiled down on Old Trafford just long enough to give the most watched game in World Cup cricket a definite result … thanks the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method of finding a winner.

It was reported that some half-a-million applications for tickets had been received for the India-Pakistan match being played at the 23,000-seat Lancashire ground and up to one billion would be watching on television.

But suppose it had rained all day, what would have happened?

Absolutely nothing – the match would have been written off as NR (no result) and those one billion viewers plus the ticket holders would have shrugged and moved on to the next game.

Is that how to run your shop-window event?

It is 13 years since England was chosen to stage this year’s festival, yet nobody has managed to come up with a way of having reserve days for rained off matches.

In the six weeks of the World Cup, the most games any teams will play is 11 (and that is only the finalists), leaving each country with more than 30 free days to fit in any wash-outs.

Even Sunday League football teams manage to find a new date for postponed matches in that time.

A country could be knocked out of cricket’s World Cup while their players stand on the dressing room balcony staring out at the rain pouring down from leaden skies. Sri Lanka have already had two of their five games washed out.

Of course, it might also rain on the extra day but at least they would be doubling the chance of some cricket.

A whole raft of reasons for not having reserve days has been coming from the ICC, including pitch preparation, hotel accommodation, staffing, volunteers, broadcasting – add your own in case they have missed any – but they are all excuses for failing to get the World Cup decided on the pitch, rather than by some mathematical method known as DLS.

And if it is so difficult to arrange an extra day how come they have managed it once the competition reaches the semi-final stage?

Cricket lovers have a lot to put up with … finding reasons NOT to play is just one of them.

*Has there ever been a sport quite like rugby league for making things up as it goes along?

If there was a prize for chopping and changing it would be a no-contest.

Barrow Raiders were among the clubs who spilled blood last season in an attempt to avoid relegation from the Championship only to be told a few weeks before the end of the season there wouldn’t be any after all.

This season the club are having the same battle – amid rumours that the Championship will be extended to 16 teams and there might be only one place in the relegation bus to League One.

Words such as “new protocols” are used to explain a sudden change in refereeing decisions (the ten-metre rule came in midway through a season while clampdowns on things such as ‘flopping’ rarely last beyond the first month).

Over the weekend, just as clubs were scouring the country for new players to beat the July signings deadline that was extended to August 9.

Official press releases explain the reasons in PR-speak about the number of games left, the change in structure and making life simpler.

No doubt there will be more changes on the way to confuse harassed club officials and baffle spectators before the end of the season.

And as soon as we have got used to them they will change again.

*Frank Lampard is idolised at Chelsea. In a 13-year playing career there, he won just about everything there was to win.

He is a club legend, but if he wants to keep it that way he would be wise to turn down the chance to become the club’s latest manager. At least for the time being.

Lampard is on the first rung of the managerial ladder and although he has done reasonably well at Derby County, he has hardly torn up any trees. The Rams are in much the same place that they were when he took over.

The temptation to return to Chelsea must be immense, but he knows better than anybody about the shelf life of a Stamford Bridge manager whether they are trophy winners, local heroes or just good old Johnny Foreigner.

Lampard is still learning the business and he must know better than anybody that the cauldron that is Stamford Bridge is not the place to take lessons. They have just sold their best player and are banned from signing a replacement even if there was one for sale.

Lampard may be the manager of Chelsea one day but is now the right time to take such a sentimental journey?