Archive for March 2010
I don’t know if I can go through all this again with Wayne Rooney. Last time round we gathered round super slow-motion footage of his limp. We questioned the structural integrity of his crutches. We loitered cravenly outside his Cheshire hospital waiting for a glimpse of the tourniquet. We tried to search for the emotional truth in his face. Which we found out was like reading a subtext into The Hungry Caterpillar.
It’s all too exhausting trying to discern the significance of the fact that Rooney was marched straight to specialist as opposed to waiting a few days. Apparently this is a good thing, if there had been extensive swelling to the ligaments then the procedure would have been delayed. But we may as well cut open Michael Owen and read his entrails for all the good that predicting is going to do. That might be all the little man is right for these days – at least we don’t have to worry about him for a change.
Each IPL game this season has been sold as 2500 seconds of advertising opportunity. Every last drop has been awkwardly squeezed out in the name of selling us stuff.
Hence a six becomes a DLF maximum. DLF is an Indian real estate developer. Such is the promotional bombardment that they have engineered during the tournament that the next time I am in possession of small bit of land in Kerala or Goa or somewhere that I wish to develop then I will undoubtedly be knocking at their door.
It’s all very tedious. Obviously. Even the scruffy dogs that regularly trot onto the outfield have the Pepsi logo singed into their matted fur. But we should remember that, once we strip back the grotesque layers and layers of extraneous corporate messages and announcements, there is some cricket. Some of it’s quite good, as David Hussey helpfully reminded us yesterday, with this little snippet of quick-witted athleticism. It’s a terrific catch. Sorry it’s a terrific Karbonn Kamaal catch:
So Gianfranco Zola vows to haul back West Ham from the trapdoor and a million east-end eyebrows jump skywards. We thought that Zola had slunk off to the Mediterranean never to return, like a cancerous cat finds a far-off meadow to lay down and die in.
Who knows what happened out in Sardinia? Perhaps the Zola famiglia rallied around the little man and cooked him a dinner to elevate his ailing spirits. With large furry-lipped aunts in black dresses dolloping grotesque amounts of fortifying ravioli onto his plate, and sage elders cursing the names of Sullivan and Gold while aggresively breaking focaccia and slurping olive oil. And as the vino flowed, Zola will have collected his thoughts and resolved to fight on.
All of which must have come as sour news for the rumoured heir-apparent Steve McClaren, lurking in some Whitechapel alley like Jack the Ripper under an FA-branded golf umbrella, waiting to pounce.
If his past ill-conceived attempts to ingratiate himself with the locals in the Low Countries are anything to go by, then we can expect McClaren to be polishing up his pearly king outfit and asking not to be referred to as the manager, rather the lor’ blimey guvnor.
Love a duck. Love a fucking duck.
Just to let you know that I’m being released into the community at large tomorrow. And then scooped up again and put back where I’m safest: locked in a room with a television showing cricket and computer that I can write rubbish on.
I’m providing a sort of live caption to the internet streaming of ITV’s IPL coverage. Which might be beyond someone whose average typing speed is around four words per minute, but I’m going to give it a crack anyway.
I could become the first person to develop the keyboard version of a stutter, or I could develop Tourettes, I could refer to silly twat mid-off or Shaun Bollock. So it might be a car crash. Or a computer crash at least.
Shane Warne: Cricket legend and professional baldy. Once refused to shake my hand in HMV so therefore I hate him.
Damien Martyn: Didn’t know he was still alive.
Dimitri Mascarenhas: England reject. Don’t put that on your CV Dimi.
Morne Morkel: Terrifying partnership with Dale Steyn on the pitch, new Hale and Pace off it (I like to think).
Graeme Smith: Nickname at school was ‘Loathsome’.
Shaun Tait: Randomly watched me play cricket in Dulwich last summer. Is sometimes so rubbish I wonder if he picked up a few tips.
Captain Sachin Tendulkar: Will never write anything remotely sarcastic about him. Bit stumped in that case.
Dwayne Bravo: Dwayne Bravissimo.
J-P Duminy: Is powerless without his security blanket.
Dilhara Fernando: Has the hair of a middle-aged woman from King’s Lynn.
Harbhajan Singh: Rumoured to be a big fan of Come Dine With Me.
Sanath Jayasuriya: May be immortal. Not sure.
Zaheer Khan: Left-armer. Will bowl slowly at Kevin Pietersen if necessary.
Lasith Malinga: Made a career out of bowling so the ball appears from the umpire’s crotch.
Graham Napier: Spent most of IPL 2009 looking like I probably will on Saturday at ITV Towers. Like he doesn’t belong.
Keiron Pollard: Has a big price tag. Has the bulk to carry it though.
Captain Sourav Ganguly: Lives in a castle. Surrounded by a moat. On an island.
Ajit Agarkar: Assumed to be rubbish because he looks like a double-handled Toby jug. Is actually rubbish.
Chris Gayle: Has been known to hit cricket balls into atoms.
Charl Langeveldt: First name always makes me want to go ‘sss’ like when Americans say ‘math’.
Brendon McCullum: First ever owner of the golden helmet for leading IPL run-scorer. Wish I had a golden helmet. I’d wear it everywhere. To work. To bed. In the shower.
Angelo Matthews: Sounds like he should be a bit-part actor in things like Miami Vice and Beverly Hills Cop.
Owais Shah: Runs like a skittish kitten.
Ishant Sharma: Sounds like Instant Karma, but looks more like George Harrison.
Captain Kumar Sangakkara: Has the eyes of an attractive giraffe.
Ravi Bopara: Only just let back into the community after he went mental last summer and thought he was test no.3 batsman.
Piyush Chawla: Signed by Surrey. Now destined to be rubbish.
James Hopes: Smallest forehead in cricket.
Mahela Jayawardene: Top-notch mono-brow. One of the finest east of Manchester.
Brett Lee: Perpetrator of the worst crimes against cricket celebrations. Always looks like he should be accompanied by two small girls and a skipping rope.
Irfan Pathan: Bears a shocking resemblance to disgraced butler Paul Burrell.
Sreesanth: Needs to decides what his name is. Deserves kudos for past heroics as break-dancer.
Yuvraj Singh: Plays cricket the way it should be. Like he doesn’t give a crap. Until he faces Stuart Broad.
Captain Gautam Gambhir: Batsman. Plays cricket.
AB De Villiers: Second in the current rankings for Fattest Head in test cricket. Rapidly catching up Kallis.
Tillakaratne Dilshan: Is it a plane? Is it a bird? No it’s Scooperman.
Andrew McDonald: There’s a Dulux shade called Andrew McDonald red. It’s a poor seller. As far as I know nobody has painted their sitting room ginger yet.
Dirk Nannes: Everyone’s favourite pro-skiing fast-bowling saxophonist.
Ashish Nehra: Always looks vaguely hungover. If there’s a mound of regurgitated chow mein on the bowler’s run-ups we know where it’s come from.
Virender Sehwag: No finer sight in cricket than Sehwag standing in the outfield, hands in his pockets, looking at a funny-shaped cloud in the sky.
David Warner: Has the mien of a small yappy dog.