Posts Tagged ‘cricinfo’
Ian Chappell has described Ricky Ponting as past his “use-by date”. Given his execrable form and questionable conduct recently it is fair that his pretensions on the future captaincy should be examined, but to regard him in terms of a yoghurt does a disservice to his golden record as an Australian cricketer. Even if his face has soured to form the features of a puking kitten.
Perhaps Ponting should be relieved that only his cricketing actions have been critiqued. Peter English writing for Cricinfo today claims that there are doubts about Michael Clarke’s suitability for the role because of his ‘metrosexual tendencies’. But if a man wants to apply under-eye serum and watch Glee marathons that is entirely his own business. What are the fears? That he’ll replace the traditional baggy green cap with a more fitted version in a seasonal colour? Or he’ll replace the team song with something from the Olivia Newton-John back catalogue? We can only hope.
Look at this picture of a this oddly grainy snap of a young David Cameron looking like an extra from M*A*S*H*. Stone me if he doesn’t bear a remarkable similarity to an oddly grainy Morne Morkel:
Which is wierd because when I went onto Google images to corroborate my findings and discovered this entry onto Cricinfo’s lookalikes page:
Which has me envisaging a scenario in the near future where the very highest echelons of British society will be populated entirely by people who look a bit like Morne Morkel. What a funny situation that will be.
P.S Fulham are about to kick off. Good luck Fulham. That Brede Hangeland looks a bit like someone…
Nothing in sport crushes the spirit so shatteringly as watching England bat their way through a one-day powerplay. I was wincing at my computer screen today following the action from Belfast. It was a situation exacerbated by Cricinfo’s skeletal updates: no commentary on the state of the pitch, the quality of the bowling, the overhead conditions, just ‘no run’ after ‘no run’ after ‘no run’. The imagination ran wild as to what was going on.
Perhaps England were running the cricketing equivalent of the slow bicycle race, some kind of smug post-Ashes challenge to score as sedately as possible. Aggressive shots are punished with a forfeit: Luke Wright was spotted performing naked press-ups on the steps leading up to Stormont Castle.
I know it’s only one game, but the mindless familiarity of it all means that it feels like England’s one-day cancer may never be cured before the entire format inevitably dies away in a few years. Ashes heroes like Matt Prior and Graeme Swann play their test cricket in a gear which seems designed for the shorter game, but have been sucked into the whirlpool of mediocrity. With Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pietersen absented for the immediate future, it could be a long bleak autumn for the English.
It feels like ages since we polished off the Aussies at Lords. A lot has happened since then. Mainly that Kevin Pietersen has gone and got himself fucked.
Now we have Ian Bell and he’s stepping in to Pietersen’s shoes at no.4. Which is a problem because Bell has pixie feet and those shoes clearly won’t fit him.
And he doesn’t go out with somebody from Liberty X. In fact I don’t think that there’s anyone from the current crop of popstrels that falls into his league. Joan Armatrading maybe. One of those twins from Bewitched possibly. Toyah Wilcox at a push.
And he’s shorter. And there isn’t an Ian Bell Zone on Cricinfo. And he won’t get up the Australians’ noses like Pietersen. He’ll do the exact opposite. He’ll come out of their noses.
Oh yes and he isn’t as good as KP.
To be fair there isn’t really anyone else. And he did bat at No.4 during 2005 series. Although he did average 17.10 over those five games. Bugger.
All this angst is probably moot. For Edgbaston at least. Because the outfield currently resembles a peat bog and that represents a danger to the players. Particularly Bell who is only tiny and might get sucked under the level of the grass.
So I am lending my full-hearted backing to the passionate indifference towards Ian Bell that has been led up in the higher strata of the blogosphere by King Cricket – truly a movement worth fighting for.
I don’t think that anyone was quite sure who was winning after the first day of the first Ashes test match. Particularly the Metro, which confirmed its reputation for superb consistent reportage by proclaiming that the Australians had edged it on the front page, and stating the complete opposite on the back to say that England were just in front. I don’t think there’ll be any confusion tomorrow.
It all started so promisingly this morning. My work internet was restored to full health and I was merrily exploiting the fact that the Cricinfo live scorecard sort of looks a bit like a spreadsheet of sales figures. Except with a large blue banner that says Cricinfo. I was so exhilirated by the free scoring at one point I was printing random pages to the printer just to give me an excuse to get up and have a little private jig over on the other side of the office. And to pick up a blank piece of paper.
And I could hardly contain myself when I read that Graeme Swann had winked at an increasingly irate Mitchell Johnson. I found myself winking at my screen like a mentalist as if my computer itself had sledged me. Which is a mildly nightmarish thought: that you can happily be tapping away only for a pop-up message to appear saying that you’re shit at typing. You wanker.
My enthusiasm led me to The Cock & Lion on Wigmore St to get a quick schnifter of live action. Which is not ideal because a) it feels slightly wrong to go into a pub on your own and b) there’s nearly always some bellend in there loudly explaining that the way he’d deal with Andrew Flintoff would be to walk down the wicket and smack the ball over his head.
And having fallen slightly back in love with Flintoff, I bounced back to the office to pick up the thread of the internet coverage. Which is where it all started to go wrong. By the time tea was taken, I’d clicked the close button on my little blue oblong of cricket and was doing actual work.
And it all fell to pieces when I found out that my house purchase had fallen through a week before completion. Suddenly, not only was cricket rubbish, but it also didn’t matter.
But there is always tomorrow. There are homes to buy and Aussie wickets to take.
I always wake with butterflies fluttering about my stomach on the first morning of an Ashes series. But they seemed more energetic than ever today. In fact I had to duck into Caffe Nero on my walk to the bus stop to deposit said butterflies into one of their facilities.
Looking at the charcoal skies in London I wasn’t particularly hopeful that we’d have play out west in Cardiff. I spent three years there and I’m still drying out my wardrobe from the frequent rainshowers.
I made the necessary mental preparations to reconcile myself to the fact that I would only be able to follow the action via internet updates. My provider of choice is Cricinfo, largely for the sheer wonderful volume of statistical analysis. There is little in the world that is more satisfying than witnessing the first class average of a particular batsman tick over by 0.01 of a run. Live.
But the biblical deluge that smote London yesterday evening created a minor tsunami which battered the systems room at my office and sozzled all the computer circuits. Which also created a minor flood down my cheeks.
Never fear. So to the mobile which also cunningly contains Cricinfo. The slightly irksome difference is that you have to pay. Quite a lot of money. If I compared the cost of mobile internet connection to my daily salary, I’d probably make the depressing discovery that I’d actually paid to be at work today.
Maybe it was worth it though. Following the cricket on a mobile phone is strangely involving. I can still hate Peter Siddle through a tiny rectangle of text. With his idiotic triangle of fluff under his bottom lip. He may as well have ‘twat’ written on his chin.
And I still experienced the vertiginous nausea that a rollercoaster day of Test cricket such as today can cause (and Twenty20 can’t). You’ll read more informed analysis of the day’s play in the papers and other blogs but suffice it to say that both captains will be satisfied. And Strauss will be particularly encouraged that there seems to be rich rewards from seam and turn to be harvested by his multi-faceted bowling attack.
Game on. Ashes on.