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Chris Gayle knocks Somerset website for six

“I don’t like cricket, I love it”. I love it even more after hearing the news that Christopher Henry Gayle will be playing T20 cricket in England this summer. To those who aren’t cricket fans, Gayle is a huge hitting opening batsman who has helped revolutionised the modern art of batting. Only a couple of weeks ago, he became the first player to score a double century in a World Cup.

After a poor showing by the men’s national team in the World Cup, the announcement was a massive shot in the arm for English cricket. The unveiling of Gayle was also a massive coup for Somerset County Cricket Club. Somerset will undoubtedly see a massive upturn in ticket sales, with fans eager to see Gayle in action. The moment the news broke fans and eager cricket badgers flocked to their website to read about the signing. Unfortunately for the club, this caused the website to crash under the load of visitors.

A classic example of an underprepared website

The club used their official Twitter to explain that the website was receiving too much traffic and that their servers couldn’t cope. Looking at the website today things seem to be up and running. However you can’t help feel the club lost a lot of potentially good publicity whilst the website was down yesterday. I can’t explain to people how big a coup this is for Somerset and English cricket so for the website to be down is a significant blow.

This is in my opinion is a classic example of a website not being prepared for anticipated load. No doubt the club had a marketing plan to hype ticket sales; despite this, the website was down for several hours. Gayle is a blockbuster player so I am sure tickets will sell despite this, however the news was the hottest topic in cricket yesterday and the club blew a golden opportunity to sell itself further.

More affordable performance testing

Stress and performance testing could have helped Somerset CCC. With such a major announcement, they should have taken extra precautions with their website. With tools such as LoadRunner in the Cloud which now includes HP Network Virtualization software, companies can save themselves the embarrassment of crashed website at affordable prices. It’s a shame Somerset CCC found out when it was already too late.

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