Posts Tagged ‘Test cricket’
Crooked cricketers of the world be warned. Steve Waugh is on a crusade to disinfect the game, to rid it of its vermin. And don’t go thinking you can lie to him. He’s got a special machine that will uncover your porkie the second it drops from your mouth.
But I’ve always been led to believe that lie-detection was the shifty associate of mainstream forensic science, a technology only to be trusted when employed in dubious cop movies. If it did work, then the entire judicial system would be reduced to “did you do it?”, “no”, “computer says you’re lying, you’re going down”.
Given his confidence in the efficacy of the polygraph, it may be that Waugh has seen too many of these films. In fact, it doesn’t take a bounding leap of imagination to conceive a scene in which the former Australian captain and his twin have hauled in some snivelling rodent for questioning and are playing out some outrageous ‘good Waugh, bad Waugh’ scenario. Mark attempting to wheedle out information with his persuasive charm. Steve prowling in the background, dabbing at his sweaty lips with his beloved red hankie, waiting to bring MCC justice to bear on the suspect’s fingers with the blade of his bat.
I’d watch it.
It is the debate that has split the country in two. The nation has not been this riven since a roundhead first offered a cavalier outside to taste his musket. It’s Blur vs Oasis. Moore vs Connery. Pro-life vs abortion.
The latest hot spud demands that each and everyone of us ask fundamental questions of our own worldview and decide exactly where we stand. Do you prefer brunettes or blondes? State or private education? North or south (Leicestershire)? Burly or willowy? Tall or really tall? Swing or seam?
I’d go for Bresnan. The selectors will probably plump for Broad. I don’t know really.
Welcome to the first and last in a series of sportspeople that resemble celebrity pets. This week’s effort is a cover shot from Cosmopolitan of Kelly Osbourne cuddling something that looks a lot like Shivnarine Chanderpaul.
I genuinely don’t know what this animal is. Is it a cat? A dog? Or even a tiny bear? Maybe it is just Shivnarine Chanderpaul.
I bowled two overs yesterday. I conceded 37 runs. My team lost by two runs. It has led me to appraise my skills as a cricketer, assess my strengths and weaknesses.
My weaknesses as a bowler is probably my bowling. My bowling is quite weak. I’m not great at fielding either.
Among my strengths is the fact that I am not bad in the clubhouse. When batting, I am pretty good at the leave. The leave is my best shot. I’m better at not hitting the ball than hitting it. I am also very good at under-arming the ball to the bowler when standing at mid-on. I am so accurate that often the bowler doesn’t even need to break stride as he walks back to his mark.
My genuine skill in the game is scoring. I am very handy with a pencil in my hands. I know when to erase and not to erase. I can count to six.
Which is why I love the below clip of one of my brethren, Keith Booth, in action at in the score box at the Oval. Action is probably the wrong word. There is a long section at the end in which the most interesting thing to happen is Keith clearing his throat. My favourite quote is when Keith explains that his Tipp-ex is the second most important tool of his trade, behind only his laptop. Obviously no-one has shown him where the delete button is.
There was a time when England stars strode the turf at Surrey. The Oval dressing room was a habitat where big players flourished and dominated. It was an age of Thorpe, Butcher, Stewart. The era of Martin Bicknell. But then they were gone. Mysteriously driven into extinction as the county slid into a prolonged slough.
So you can’t really blame the Surrey administrators for hollering now that suddenly the international superstars have returned. Although when some marketing factotum was instructed to ‘big up’ this exciting influx, they obviously took it too literally.
It’s a creative effort that should be appluaded even if it does present a nightmarish vision of genetic experimentation in cricket gone wrong. Fee fi fo fum, I smell the blood of a naturalised Englishman through his mother’s passport. Sadly it may be that you’d be more likely to see the giant version of Kevin Pietersen than the lifesize one, given his previous attendance record at Hampshire.
Still, the Oval is definitely worth paying a visit this summer – why not seek the shade under Chris Tremlett’s huge sweaty ass?
Here’s Kevin Pietersen looking a little morose during an interview at the Oval this week. I suppose I’d feel little distrait if I only had four snatched days with my family between tours, and one of them was spent helping promote a team he will hardly play for. Surrey haven’t even been able to muster the necessary crockery resources to serve his biscuit on a plate. Kevin Pietersen doesn’t eat his cookies straight from the table. It’s not even something luxurious like a Boaster. No wonder he wants to retire.
Harris Sportsthoughts is back from Australia, replica urn safely in hand baggage, and with a huge scoop. I sent my Mum and Dad down to the SCG on the day before the test match, where they were able to secure an interview with injured Australian captain Ricky Ponting.
So here’s the line that will have sports editors along Fleet Street re-arranging their back pages. Mum reports that Ponting is surprisingly handsome, personable, with a nice face. Dad took some photos too. Mainly of his feet, he hasn’t quite got to grips with the digital camera yet.
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.
I thought I’d seen everything in cricket until I saw a photo of Stuart Broad emerging like a wet Bond girl from the ocean in the ‘Torso of the Week’ section of celebrity tatmag Heat. The dark poetry of which is that the beautiful Broad abdomen has since been torn asunder and denied him any further involvement in the series.
The England management consider Chris Tremlett to be a suitable bowling replacement but if Heat magazine have a void to fill on their pretty-boy centrefold then the Surrey man is adequately sculpted also, as this eye-popping and slightly frightening picture testifies:
There seems to be some grass on the wicket. Maybe he asked for a Perth.
It is obviously no coincidence that the surprise elevation of Michael Beer to international status follows the promotion of his cause by Shane Warne last week. Since his retirement Warne has operated like an eminence baggy grise in Australian cricket, acting as spinmaker behind the thrones of the administration. Perhaps the management will use Warne’s endorsement as a disclaimer should the Beer gamble fail to pay off. It remains to be seen whether the selection panel should have heeded that word of motherly caution “if Shane Warne told you to jump off a cliff, would you?”
The bulbous shadow of Warne has loomed over Australian slow-bowling since his final game four years ago. Those who have tried to operate in it have flailed in the darkness. His legend could hardly have been bolstered further but as each pretender wilts away into oblivion, the myth of Warne is fluffed a little more. For that reason you could mischievously speculate that the bewildering selection policy has been orchestrated by Warne himself.
In addition to the tapping of Beer from obscurity, it would explain the bafflingly positive commentary on Xavier Doherty‘s bowling in the face of all cricket science. And the kibosh imposed on a return for Nathan Hauritz by arguing that it simply wasn’t possible.
Australian cricket fans, you have been Warned.