Upstairs, Cora asks about the cricket match and Thomas is apparently their best player from the way Lord Grantham thanks the Lord that they still have them. Edith asks if he won't be leaving -- word travels fast -- but Lord Grantham is like, not until we kick the village's collective ass. Edith baits her father by saying she hears the village team is in terrific shape and Lord Grantham bemoans the fact that the members of the outside staff are on the other team, especially since -- as we'll learn -- the village almost always wins. Lord Grantham then asks Mary what she was up to in London, as she looks worn out and Mary evades the first part of the question by answering the second, saying she'll try to rest the next day. She then gives her mother an anxious look, which is met by a reassuring one and the exchange unsurprisingly makes a lot more sense if you've seen the episode through already.
Downstairs, O'Brien catches Jimmy James and tells him that she hears Carson made a decision regarding Thomas, so if he wants to go on record against him now is the time. Jimmy James isn't sure and professes to be disgusted by the whole affair, but O'Brien says that if he doesn't speak out, people may think he feels the opposite. And as much as I may disapprove of the particulars in this case, I still can't help but be impressed with the way she plays the entire downstairs like it's her personal string section.
Matthew appears dressed for dinner and is surprised to find Anna waiting outside Mary's room. Anna explains that Cora is in with Mary, so they may be late. Matthew decides to enter and see what's going on, which seems like an intrusion to me, but this is Matthew we're talking about. We catch Cora telling Mary that she'll be in good hands with a "Dr. Ryder," but that's it before Matthew announces his presence, which sends Cora off to get ready for dinner. As Anna enters, Matthew asks what that was about, but Mary plays it off as "women's stuff" -- not that she's lying -- before telling Matthew his ears must have been burning before, as they were discussing the cricket match. Matthew recalls that the village thrashed the house a year earlier, so he guesses he'll have to play and Mary confirms that. Matthew gets a jump on his Cloddish Statements Episode Quota by supposing that Bates is happy to be able to avoid cricket and Anna is like, pretty sure he'd rather walk without a limp, "Even if playing cricket was the price he had to pay." Matthew removes the dress shoe from his mouth, but both Mary and Anna are smirking, so obviously no offense was taken. I mean, they'd have to be pretty thin-skinned to think a man who spent significant time in a wheelchair meant anything by the comment, not to mention the fact that they have met Matthew before.