Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.

Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.

Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.

Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph could have potential as a cricket star

Posted by: Updated: March 28, 2013 - 1:21 PM

If you thought Kyle Rudolph’s ascension to become Pro Bowl MVP in January came out of the blue, then what would you think if we alerted you to the promise that Rudolph is suddenly showing as a cricket player?

This week, as part of an overseas trip to Ireland and England to promote the Vikings’ Sept. 29 game against the Steelers in London, Rudolph, Harrison Smith and John Sullivan have all been expanding their horizons. On Wednesday, that included a visit with the Yorkshire Vikings cricket club in Headingley.

According to a press release from the UK, three Yorkshire Vikings – Phil Jacques, Liam Plunkett and Jack Brooks – spent time teaching the trio of Minnesota Vikings about the nuances of cricket. And then Rudolph, Smith and Sullivan were allowed to test their skills.

From the official press release (courtesy of Yorkshire Vikings Head of Media Danny Reuben), Rudolph showed “he can bat with the best.”

More from that release ...

Plunkett, Yorkshire’s new signing for this year and an England international, showed Rudolph the basics and within a few balls he was middling the ball with ease.

The most impressive aspect of his net was smacking the ball through the covers with the bowling machine ramped up to 99 mph - even Plunkett was in awe of Rudolph’s hand-to-eye coordination.

“I was very surprised how good Kyle’s (Rudolph) batting was,” said Plunkett. “Boy he could hit a ball. He creamed it a few times through the covers – he could well be a pinch hitter for the Vikings in this year’s Friends Life T20 competition. He could well follow in the footsteps of another famous Yorkshire player Jaques Rudolph."

Added Kyle Rudolph: “I didn’t know much about cricket before coming to Headingley today. This is a great tie up between two big sports organizations in Minnesota and Yorkshire. I will certainly be following the Yorkshire team this year, via social media, and hope they have a big season. We have been made to feel very welcome and love the Yorkshire hospitality.”

If you’re struggling too much to decipher what all that means, here are at least a couple photos from that event.






Houston - LP: D. Keuchel 0 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: B. McCarthy 3
Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber 1 FINAL
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 4
Detroit - LP: D. Price 0 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: A. Cobb 1
Arizona - LP: O. Perez 0 FINAL
Washington - WP: R. Soriano 1
San Francisco - LP: R. Vogelsong 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: T. Wada 2
Atlanta - WP: J. Teheran 8 FINAL
Cincinnati - LP: D. Holmberg 0
LA Angels - WP: M. Shoemaker 2 FINAL
Boston - LP: R. De La Rosa 0
San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 5 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: T. Wood 3
San Diego - LP: T. Ross 1 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: C. Kershaw 2
Pittsburgh 21 FINAL
Philadelphia 31
Carolina 6:30 PM
New England
NY Giants 6:30 PM
NY Jets
Jacksonville 6:30 PM
Oakland 7:00 PM
Green Bay
Chicago 9:00 PM
Tampa Bay 8/23/14 3:30 PM
Tennessee 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Dallas 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Washington 8/23/14 6:30 PM
New Orleans 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Minnesota 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Houston 8/23/14 8:00 PM
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
(21) Texas A&M 8/28/14 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Boise State 8/28/14 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Temple 8/28/14 8:15 PM
Rutgers 8/28/14 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 8/28/14 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
Montreal 7:30 PM
Toronto 8/23/14 3:00 PM
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Winnipeg 8/31/14 2:00 PM
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Washington 73 FINAL
Indiana 78
San Antonio 84 FINAL
Minnesota 88
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pm
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pm
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon




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