Beware Australians Bearing Gifts
The rapid descent of Australian cricket into a quivering shambles has set the alarms bells ringing at Sportsthoughts headquarters. Is this a dastardly strategem designed to put the tourists off the scent? Will Brisbane be the arena for a battalion of honed Aussie cricketers to charge forth from a metaphorical Trojan Horse of shitness?
Recent form feels suspicious in its scope and creativity. There’s a roster of injuries that include spurious entries such as Simon Katich‘s poorly thumb. There was that pointless and ill-timed hoop-la surrounding the announcement of a 17-man squad; the ceremony was ruined by rain, the clouds probably seeded as part of some fiendish scheme to depress the nation further.
Even Michael Atherton arrived in Hobart this week stating that he found the atmosphere strange when he touched down in the country, although he may be confusing that for jetlag. His Australian counterparts are possibly involved in the conspiracy. Last night they waxed bizarrely rhapsodical about the technique of Usman Khawaja during an innings that had lasted one delivery up to that point. He’d left the ball. Khawaja is one of eight participating batsmen of the Australian squad that played first-class cricket yesterday. They managed a laughable 61 runs between them. I don’t buy it. There’s something up.
This isn’t a new tactic. England tried it last time they toured Australia, sklifully executing a imaginitive plot that including mental illness and in-fighting. The coup de grace was delivered with some panache by Steve Harmison and his iconicly rubbish first delivery at the Gabba. There was just one problem. They forgot to get out of the horse.