Sunday, 31 May 2009

It's not how you drive, it's how you arrive

Just checking up on the popularity poll on SuperSport, which I do believe Albie has no chance of winning whatsoever (nor does Duminy, so there goes my interest in that), I noticed an article about ROFL. It's a good day for him on this blog.

The article mostly has stuff I already know, but at the end, there's a quote from the presentation ceremony after the T20 against Australia which ROFL won MoM for. I cannot believe I missed this when it was shown. I must have been asleep. But it's pretty damn funny. ROFL talks about his crazy as fuck batting style:

"It's not how you drive, it's how you arrive."
Marvellous, says Richie.

Arriving in style.

Worth Watching The Champions League For

You might have been feeling disillusioned by it all. That's why I'm here. When you feel like you might give the Champions League a miss this year, I remind you that a very special player will be in it this year.

Pause for thought.
Guess who.

Keep guessing.

I'm giving you a whole lot of time to guess who's playing.

Hint: it's not Napoleon Einstein.

Maybe some of you got it if you're clever chooks. Anyway, folks, it's Sybrand Engelbrecht. Yes, you'd almost forgotten about him, hadn't you? My ambidextrous saffa friend, one of four best friends of mine. Let me refresh your memory.

So that's Sybrand, and the freakish guy is playing for the Cape Cobras in the Champions League this year. This is exciting news for someone like me. I've seen the Aussie domestic cricketers at home, I've seen as much of the other countries as I want to, but I've never seen Sybrand in action except for that one Test in South Africa where he was a substitute fielder. That was clever of the fuckers. Why not send an ambidextrous fellow on to run every out? I like the way they think.

I'm also out of Sybrand pictures and I need him to play more often. There's nothing like a best friend getting some matches. At the moment, Sybrand is the only one of the four likely to do anything. BRING BACK VAUGHN. And Napoleon. And Abishek Raut. What happened to him, anyway?
I'll be making sure I watch every Cape Cobras match for Sybrand. Can't miss out on supporting a best friend when they finally get a game.


Dhoni Morphing Into A Lion

The ridiculousness of the rest of the video is irrelevant. DHONI'S HEAD MORPHS INTO A LION'S HEAD, folks.

Holy fucking shit.

That's just really trippy.

I also feel so very sorry for Dhoni, Raina and whoever the last fellow is. Badrinath? I can't tell.

Michael Clarke Question of the Day

It's that time of the day again. Can Esra beat Ryan Campbell in her expert knowledge of Michael Clarke? Can you beat Esra as Graeme did yesterday? If so, will she go down fighting or become so riddled with self-hate that she will believe herself to be even less of an expert than Campbell himself?

We'll soon find out.

The QotD is: What is Michael Clarke's unofficial policy when it comes to signing autographs for fans?

Do you know the answer?

That photo has no bearing on the answer, by the way. You're all alone.

Where Australia are at

Michael Clarke doesn't want to captain in his lifetime. Idiot. He'd rather be the perpetual vice-captain:

Ricky Ponting has suffered a small blow to his hand which apparently saw

He also later "apologetically declined to shake a journalists' hand, indicating the strapping round his arm." Everyone knows he just didn't want to get British germs, after being told by Brett Lee that they were all carrying the swine flu, the English being immune to it themselves after spending centuries in close contact with pigs. Very close contact.

Look at that fake concern on Brett's face.

Brad Haddin thinks this current team can "leave their mark as an Australian team". If he keeps edging his gloves in front of the stumps to claim stumpings, they sure will.

And Mitchell Johnson wants to bat in the top 6 as a batting all-rounder.

Looking good?

How South Africa Plan to Win the World T20

They're doing it already, you can see the nasty gleam in their eyes. According to Mickey Arthur, they've got two plans of attack, depending on pitch conditions: spin or seam.

But wait, there's more:
“We have the personnel. Whether it’s strategy A or strategy B we have seven bowling options and the ability to bat to number ten.”

The ability to bat to number 10. He doesn't mean bat well, does he? Because those last few batsmen will be a little dodgy, perhaps.

So while South Africa are preparing to win this thing, Q at Well Pitched, thinks they cannot. Who will win? Mickey or Q? Or Q taking the mickey out of Mickey?

Bracken Rates Albie

Any validation is welcome after the not-so-illustrious IPL. If you opened up your non-tabloid morning paper, you'd find an article in which Nathan Bracken attempts to retain some of his supposed notoriety as one of the best limited overs bowlers in the world.

It's all irrelevant, except for the part where he accidently lets slip just how afraid he is of Albie Morkel:

"Guys like Jacob Oram [New Zealand] and Albie Morkel [South Africa] have their shots. So it is important not to make a mistake, not to miss the mark."

Now, you might not be able to interpret that there, but being the kind individual that I am, I will helpfully translate that for you:

"There's that pussy Jacob Oram who doesn't want to play Tests. If my country wanted me to, I sure would. That doesn't mean they don't want me to. Of course they do. Hilditch is at my door every day begging me to be on the Test team but I say no because I have other commitments. To be honest, there's only one batsman I really fear. Not fear, of course, but there's always that trepidation associated with bowling to him. Him being Albie Morkel. I pee my pants when I see he's on strike, he's really fucking terrifying. He once hit me over my head and over the sightscreen, into the stands and down some stairs... sometimes I have nightmares about it."

There's nothing like an accurate translation by Amy S. to enlighten you to the ways of Nathan Bracken.
He also makes reference to Australia losing a T20 against Zimbabwe, something Cricket Australia had tried to shoo under the carpet:

"No one should be considered an easy team; we've lost to Zimbabwe in T20 before."

Indeed you have. That was pretty fucking funny, come to think of it.

He likes to think he's the man. Unfortunately, he hasn't looked in a mirror yet.

How ROFL nearly died

Boncam is on the case again, our South African correspondent telling us the latest tales of the goings on in the saffa camp. Today's breaking news is that GRAEME SMITH ATTEMPTED TO KILL ROFL.

Yes, it's true. Yes, it's also in Afrikaans so I'm fucked. Thankfully, Boncam is on the case, giving us a rundown of what happened and just how our evil elf almost died at the hands of the unforgiving sea, having been placed there by his flat-faced captain. This is how it went, says Boncam:

ROFL almost drowned during a training session in Durban. I am not kidding! They were in teams of 4. ROFL with JP, Steyn & GS. They decided ROFL should swim the 300m. I think they had to do a kind of triathlon thing. Some were running from the hotel to the beach, others were in a canoe and fuckface Graeme decided ROFL should do the swimming, its about 3.5km I am sure he can swim, GS & JP are coastal guys while ROFL is from the highlands, anyway the current was just too strong and he started going under. He was saved by a lifeguard who didnt even took the chance of swimming, he canoed over.
Phew, close call. Imagine if ROFL had really died? No more interesting personality, no more crazy hitting the ball with his eyes shut, no more sabotaging Christmas presents. The world would be a worse place without him.

Santa's worst behaved elf lives for another day.


While I'm busy wading through the comments you guys have left, here's a Spotto from Boncam.

Spotted: Paul Harris cheering himself up without AB's help.

If that is Paul Harris, which it certainly seems to be.

England Try To Kill Ricky Ponting

From Cricinfo:

He was picking up a ball in the nets when struck by a shot from Michael Hussey and the blow ended his session.
Accompanied by this photo:

Now, if I'm not mistaken, is this not England cleverly disguising themselves as Mike Hussey and trying to kill Ponting? Little did they know he's a resilient little bastard. Just as the Australian selectors didn't know he's a resilient little bastard who would last this long as captain.
I vote the Aussies do the same, preferably disguising themselves with these masks. That should do the trick.

Saturday, 30 May 2009

Ashes Coverage in Australia

There's a little bit of choice going into the Ashes series this year, which isn't all that common for any overseas matches. But this is the Ashes, and so Fox Sports won't be the only option for Australian viewers, just as it wasn't in 2005.

SBS has joined in one the game again and is going to broadcast the series live, the only FTA broadcaster to choose to do so in 2005 and even now. As we all know, Nine's commitment to matches outside of Australia is more than weak.

The SBS broadcast will include morning updates, daily highlights and live coverage from 7:30pm for each of the five Tests, available in HD. FOX SPORTS will start their coverage at 7pm, with a one hour pre-game show. It will, of course, be in HD too.

FOX is throwing around names like Nick McArdle, Mark Waugh, Allan Border, Brendon Julian, Greg Blewitt, Damien Fleming, and there will be commentary from Shane Warne, David Gower, Ian Botham and Michael Holding.

The presentation team at SBS will he headed by Stuart MacGill, and the other two main players will be Damien Martyn and Greg Matthews. They'll be providing analysis of the Test matches and ODIs in England.

One of the good things about this is more choice for viewers, and perhaps a reprieve from some of the more annoying characters over at FOX. It also means viewers without cable subscription can watch the series live, which is always a good thing. So when you tune into the Ashes this year, which channel will you be supporting? Will you show the good old fellows at SBS a sign of your solidarity or will it be Mark Waugh all the way for you?

KP isn't very good at T20

The boy has a sense of humour. Speaking to The Mirror, he had a little to say about his T20 performances:

"I'm not very good at Twenty20 cricket, am I?"
"Funny chap," hordes of Englishmen chuckle over their morning paper. That's more like it, an English cricketer not believing he can play well. This is what the fans want.

I'm just glad I didn't have to actually listen to KP as he said this or I might not find it quite so funny. Whenever he talks, something inside me dies and I find myself squirming at the sound of his voice.

But KP is about to show even more of his comedian side when talking about the IPL:

"I made a great captain didn't I? We won two out of six when I was there and then Anil Kumble took over and they got to the final."
A failure as captain, the fans will love that even more.

He's not very good at T20, is he?

Pink Number Plates For Charity

Glenn McGrath recently launched pink number plates in NSW as part of an initiative by the McGrath Foundation. Until the 31st October, the RTA will be donating from $15 to $50 (depending on the type of plate) to the McGrath Foundation for each number plate that is sold.

It's a good cause, so if you're getting yourself a new car, or new plates for some reason, why not make them pink? I do believe there's even a pink-on-white combination if you feel a pink background is too much of an eyesore.

Who knows, you might be a number plate fetishist and this is the best thing to happen since metallic plates.

Glenn McGrath's already got one. Why don't you get one too and support breast cancers victims while you're at it?

What we didn't see this IPL


Michael Clarke Question of the Day

You'll have to use your brain a little for this one.

What is so painfully stupid about a certain tattoo Michael Clarke has?

As seen in this ad:

Or in better detail in this photo, the only image of this tattoo that I could find on the net:

Touched By An Angel

From SMH, in an interview with Brett Lee regarding the following photo taken during the '05 Ashes series:

Says Brett:

"It sums up the 2005 series. There's the happiness in Andrew Flintoff. There's me, shattered. There's sportsmanship. There's all the good you can get in Test cricket. I'd been out there facing Freddie. You play as hard as you can, and I think I play as hard as anybody, but off the field, let's get together. A lot of friendships were formed in 2005, and me and Freddie was one of them."

So while Brett Lee was getting together with Flintoff off the field, Freddie himself has sold out the incident, coming up with a far funnier take of what occurred that day:

“I must admit that when I put my arm around him the exact words I used were ‘It’s 1-1, you Aussie bastard.”

Brett and Freddie must be best buddies now. A lot has changed since 2005. They're both not quite the bowlers they were back then, but at least Freddie's team desperately wants him in the side. Lee's had a harder time of it, but he's also in the mix. This is the series where he must prove himself, and that's a stronger motivation that anything else, I'd imagine.

Dhoni and his freakish counterpart

Yesterday I posted about Dhoni's newfound insanity and of the suspect picture which raised a few concerns:

But Prabu has found a connection between Dhoni and an actor in a Tamil movie. I do believe he said it was a Vikram in the movie Kasi. Now, while I have no idea what is going on in the following video, I do know that the comparison with Dhoni in the photo above is possible the best thing that has happened to cricket. It is hilarious beyond belief, and I might have laughed myself to tears:

Really just... far too good. Far too good.

The Abuse Of Damien Fleming

Let me tell you straight, I don't particularly like Tom Gleisner. He might have been responsible for one of the best Australian television shows ever, but he isn't all that funny himself. So after the genius that was Damien Fleming talking Synchrotron on Thank God You're Here a while back, it appears that his influence (or even anyone else's, but I'm gonna pick on Gleisner) on the show has resulted in even more spoof ads being created, each fronted by Fleming.

The only problem is, the exact same script as the first ad is used, with a few tweaks to make it relevant to the product. After a while, it gets old fast. Still, here's Damien Fleming's mockery of Aussie cricketers and their apparent ability to sell just about anything:

And Fleming on a sewerage treatment plant, funny if only to see him holding suspicious-looking material:

I do believe there's yet another for surgical tools, but by that stage, even Flemo's charms can't save the doomed project.

Ricky gets a few words in

He tries, you know. It might not always work, but he sure as hell tries to target the key players England have perceived will be important in the series, and then he does his best to knock them down.

With Freddie, it's about fitness, which is a fair enough point:
"Flintoff is obviously very important to their make-up and set-up. Maybe, as we saw in 2007, if he's not 100% fit then maybe that sort of impact he can have around the team is not there. From 2005 to 2007 we saw two completely different players and that had a lot to do with the level of fitness that he had under his belt going into each series. That's where they're going to have a tough decision to make."
And then, in his lovely "relaxed and rejuvenated way" he tries hinting that KP's Achilles tendon might cause problems for the side too:
"I don't know where Pietersen's at at the moment, I'm not sure how bad his problem is, but they could face something similar there as well."
Maybe he just needs to validate his team since being at Trent Bridge has brought some rather unpleasant memories back. The Australians might not be half as cocky going into this series as they were in 2005, but Ricky will be damned if he doesn't get a chance to undermine the opposition in any way possible.

But wait, here's his last sly comment, this time about Strauss:
"We haven't had the chance to see him against us as a leader and under intense pressure, and hopefully over the next few months we'll get to see that."

If Ricky were a diplomat, he'd be the kind that piss you off extremely but you can't for the life of you figure out why.

The Beginning of Shoaib's Genital Woes

You were all trying to forget about it, I know. But an interesting revelation threatens to reveal all about the origin of Shoaib Akhtar's genital warts.

Pause for puke. And then onward:

Don't tell me you didn't notice it too.

The end.

Friday, 29 May 2009

There's Something About Colly

Whatever you think, this is not an attempt to undermine the captain of England's side going into the World T20.

But goddamn, this photo is precious:

According to the caption, this is England's team physio Dean Conway. And Paul Collingwood, of course. But best of all, it's possibly the one photo that can consistently cause a person to laugh even months after first seeing it. That's the power of Colly, can he do the same in the World T20?

Time will tell.

A funny joke involving Ricky Ponting and his popularity

Apparently he is the most marketable sports star in Australia three years running. That's ahead of every other sportsperson we have in the country, every other intensely more likeable face on the sporting circuit. Those vitamins sure did Ricky a whole lot of good.

According to a survey conducted of the public by the Sweeney Sports Report between October 2008 and March 2009, Ricky has come out tops again, and Andrew Symonds has fallen dramatically to 36th on the list. Funny that.

The top 10 of the list are as follows:

1. Ricky Ponting (cricket)
2. Grant Hackett (swimming)
3.Adam Gilchrist (cricket)
4. Glenn McGrath (cricket)
5. Pat Rafter (tennis)
6. Ian Thorpe (swimming)
7. Stephanie Rice (swimming)
8. Cathy Freeman (athletics)
9. Steve Waugh (cricket)
10. Casey Stoner (motorcycling)

That's four cricketers in the top 10, Gilly, McGrath and Waugh being the other three. They're also retired, so there's that interesting fact to consider. Aussies really do love the men of the glory days.

"Only popular for you, baby. One for the vitamins."

How Dhoni Went Bonkers

That's not a word I like to say often, but I do believe I have a rather compelling case to prove my point. Ahead of the World T20, it's not the best thing to have a crazy captain, but unfortuately India will have to make do with what they've got. And now the evidence to that effect:

Exhibit A: MSD on LSD

If he isn't a lunatic who's just escaped from an asylum, Tendulkar isn't a better batsman than Ricky Ponting.

Exhibit B: MSD talks gibberish

"Being defending champions doesn't put any additional pressure on us. It's just an add-on pressure that we can handle."

What's that? It's not additional pressure, it's just add-on pressure. Did Dhoni mistake his thesaurus for a book of antonyms?

This is all ahead of India leaving for England to join the T20 party. I fear for them, I really do. Whatever will they do with a deranged captain like that?

Australia Pull Up In England

If you're interested, David Hussey appears to have packed about half of the luggage his brother has, or about half of each of the senior members of the team. Ricky can't leave behind his blanky, it seems.

Mike Hussey is doing a lot of the talking, and most of the news outlets have jumped on his Ashes comments, being that England are a good team and so are Australia, etc. What you'd expect. He then goes on to talk about the World T20, and how he thinks Australia "have a good chance". Fat luck. If there's anything Australia's going to lose soon, it's going to be the World T20.

But amidst it all is a very confusing comment which I cannot even begin to understand:
"I'd be lying if I said the Ashes weren't at the back of our minds but we've got a different squad really for the Twenty20 so we are 100 percent focused on that at the moment."
He'd be lying if he said they weren't at the back of his mind? So they really are at the back of his mind? What a strangely worded comment.

Michael Clarke Question of the Day

I thought I'd make it harder for Esra and not just pit her against Ryan Campbell, but any other interested folks. Sorry Esra, that's how it works, I'm so very cutthroat. I'll be keeping count of how many times you win and then we'll really see whether you can be crowned the Michael Clarke Expert of the Blogosphere, because you are answering the questions on a blog.

If you're not Esra and you're reading this feeling outraged that she could possibly try to claim that title, do protest with a response of your own. Edge her out of the competition with your own cleverness and deft touch of the keyboard.

Anyone can win and prove their own worth, especially when it's greater than Ryan Campbell's. The only person who will never win is Stani, for reasons stated in the sidebar of this blog. Sorry, mate.

And today's Michael Clarke Question of the Day is: What would Michael Clarke name his firstborn? A tough one indeed, it's up to Esra to answer it. And if anyone feels so obliged, they can also attempt to win, although it'll be tough when you're against an expert of any sort.

This is the man who sets the lowest possible benchmark for expertise in a subject, namely cricket. Beat him and your performance will be deemed satisfactory. Can you be the Michael Clarke Expert of the Blogosphere?

Winning Albie Morkel's Bat

First off, I didn't actually win it. Nor did I get the chance to. As it turned out, Sport24 were running a promotion to win Albie's signed bat, and I believe it was the bat he used during the IPL. He made shit all runs with it, of course, but it's still something.

Anyway, I might have entered and tried to sway them by asking whether there is anyone else on the internet who supports Albie in his efforts more than I do. But of course, the competition apparently closed on May 25th. Yes, that's about 4 days ago, or 3 days from when I came across the promotion.

Absolutely shithouse.

Now I will never win Albie's signed bat and show you the wonders of it. Instead, some nameless person in East Timor will find themselves the ungrateful owners of the bat.

There's really only one thing left for me to do, and that's to steal his bat. Yes, this cruel injustice has driven me to a lifetime of crime and theft. Don't blame me, blame Sport24.

"Not gonna get my bat, bitch."


Bet you missed me during my short absence. Nobody got the city right, it was actually Perth. Yeah, I know. Two hours behind Sydney, screwing with my sense of time. To kick things off again, here's a Spotto from Crystal:

Spotted: What... just what?

There is literally so much going on in that picture that I don't know which part to address first. Is it AB's roar as he jumps an almighty 80 metres into the air to take yet another stunning catch? Is it the crowd that might be trying to catch the ball or indeed AB himself?

I just don't know.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Steps for Afghanistan

Afghanistan is about to create its first national cricket board.

Read all about it here. What a great new development for a country I'm pretty sure everyone has been supporting in their efforts.


I couldn't think of a title to this one, sorry. It's a bit of a nothing post anyway because I'm posting in a rush. I'm on the run, you see. Not from cops, just generally on the run. Busy, as they call it these days.

So if you were already missing me, be prepared for more heartache. I'm going to be a little quiet for today, but I'll probably be up and running by tomorrow afternoon. Aren't I just a great human being.

Some rather amusing stuff to take away the pain of losing me: just as Ricky Ponting comes out with comments that Freddie will be England's most important player in the Ashes, and that he'll "be keeping a close eye on him through the Twenty20s to see how fit and good he is", news arrives that in fact, Adil Rashid will be replacing Freddie during the World T20. So ner-ner, suck on that, etc, Ricky, England say. Looks like you won't be getting a chance to do that all too soon.

Also just checking on that SuperSport poll, it's starting to look really fucked up. While Albie is at 4%, putting him in equal fourth place, Johan Botha is steadily creeping up behind AB de Villiers like the mother in Psycho. JP has already been killed, and AB is next. Norman Bates, watch out. Your mother's a crazy bitch.

And because I never forget, the Michael Clarke Question of the Day for Esra (or should I refer to you by your real name you dirty rat?) because yes, there is now a question for you each day for as long as I can remember to do so or be bothered to do so. A self-proclaimed Clarke expert (actually, I may have heaped it on her, but so what), we're pitting Esra against the very best experts in the business, namely Ryan Campbell. Your pride is at stake, Esra. Do me proud. Here's today's question: What is unusual about the highest score Clarke has made in Test cricket? Think you can answer that one? As it turns out, I'm not going to give you hard questions to make you lose because I'd much rather you didn't. So most of the questions will be totally ridiculous. Answer without fear.

Alright, that's all. See you later, and maybe I'll be seeing an answer to that question later too. By the way, if anyone can guess which city I'm in (it's not Sydney), you get a special prize. Something to keep you entertained while I'm gone. And if you haven't cottoned on to exactly what this "prize" is, you will after a dozen more posts offering prizes but never quite delivering on any material goods.

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Sachin of old

A timely reminder of what his hair used to look like, just because I'm a generally kind person like that:

People might just mind my saying so, but that hair can only belong to a crazed porn star or a C-list actor of the '70s.

Amy S. the Cricketer

There's an Amy S. the cricketer. It's not me, idiots. It's a New Zealander who I didn't know very much about but I sure as hell do now. Presenting Amy Satterthwaite to all non-Kiwis, and possibly Kiwis who haven't heard of her, although I doubt that.

According to the New Zealand cricket website, she is 22 years old and she's in the women's international side. Not only that, she's vice-captain. I heard of her during the Women's World Cup because she did pretty well there. To be honest, I didn't get to watch a whole lot of NZ's games during the tournament so I can't really offer much information on that front.

Anyway, it's not at all odd that she looks like a female version of Morne Morkel, only MORE AMAZING because her name is Amy S.

Now, I know what you're thinking. Obviously this is really me. I've been hiding my identity all along because I was so ashamed of being a New Zealander. All I have to say to you doubtful people is, you're wrong. So very wrong, because Amy S. would never deign to hide her identity when she is so clearly made of awesome. I mean, look at Iain O'Brien's blog. I could have been the female Kiwi cricketer in the blogosphere if I wanted to, but clearly I didn't because I'm NOT Amy Satterthwaite.

She's a bowling all-rounder and has the amazing ability of making saffas drop her from what should be easy catches:

Kind of cool, that Amy S. So cool she plays for the Canterbury Magicians in domestic cricket. Wow. A magician and an Amy S? A winning combination.

There's also some very fascinating tidbits about her which I'm sure anyone would be fascinated to know. Apparently her hobbies include "golf, squash and farming". Yes, farming. If you were about to say "Too cool for school, is she?" you'd also be very wrong, because Amy S. is in fact a university student. And she wants to become a veterinarian or something. Okay.

The player profile on the New Zealand Cricket website tells us the following:

Amy is a classy left hand middle order batsman who has great timing. She can play long innings but more recently has developed her ability to attack from the outset. She has the amazing figures of 6-19 in a T20 International vs England and has a great knack of being a partnership breaker with the ball in hand. She has recently been appointed as the White Ferns vice captain.

Quite impressive. Then there's some Jacques Kallis-style Q&A, only it's obviously much better because a) she isn't Jacques Kallis and b) she isn't Jacques Kallis:

My favourite holiday destination is... Marlborough Sounds

My favourite meal to cook is... roast chicken

My favourite food to eat is... any junk food!

My sporting hero is...Tiger Woods

When not playing cricket I love to... work on the farm.

If I won lotto something I would definitely buy would be... a house

So Amy S. likes roast chicken. Intriguing. And amazing. Yes, rather amazing, that Amy S.

Ricky Talks Ashes Line-Ups

He's being a bit of a bitch to Australia's lesser bowlers, but Ricky's got a point and it seems to be the right one. The World T20 won't have any impact on who gets picked for the first Test in Cardiff. From the training camp in Queensland, he surfaced to bring us this news:
"I don't think you can really take much out of form in Twenty20 cricket when you're looking at Test matches. We've got two tour games to play before the first Test and I think, to tell the truth, that will be our best chance to get a look at the likelihood of some of those guys playing in the first Test match."
Brett Lee is a little disappointed after his stint in the IPL. He did, after all, think he was a shoo-in for frontline bowler during the first Test, or at least I said so. No doubt if it comes to it, the selectors will end up picking him over Hilfy because they're just like that, but whether he can upstage Johnson, Clark or Siddle is a little unclear at the moment.

Also from the same magical training camp on the Sunshine Coast (doesn't that just make it sound more like a holiday?), Michael Clarke tells us how Lara won't be distracting him during the tour:
"Having my partner on tour is definitely not a distraction."

Sure. If I weren't such a bitch, I'd post a gratuitous Lara Bingle shot here, but then again I am a bitch so I won't. Oh alright, maybe I'm not that big of a bitch:

At least it takes the piss out of the highly "outrageous" tourism ad that screened in the UK. So very outrageous it was for the tea-drinkers:

Indeed. Where the bloody hell are you?

Saying Goodbye To The Mischief Gals

I'd actually forgotten about them, so it's sad I had to find this on cheerleader Rebecca Lee's blog:

I mean, seriously? Where is her integrity gone now? She fucked it all up, or what was left of it, in one final post.

One more reason to pretend the IPL never happened, apart from the shit ugly trophy and Lalit Modi's beautiful eyes.

England doing something very strange

I believe it's called winning. Sure, it's against the West Indies, but they're still winning.

What is the magic formula? Why this great form going into a rather important series?

I'm very interested. I think I might even like it if England were supremely confident ahead of the Ashes. But there's always the T20 thing between now and then to shake things up a little and perhaps disturb morale within the team.

It's even more strange because Stuart Broad recently came out with some comments about England needing to learn to fill Flintoff's shoes when he wasn't there, because he isn't a lot of the time. You wouldn't have thought a 9 year old could be so wise, but it's true. He talked some sense, people. He said what every blogger has been thinking, though not the ECB.

And so Andrew Strauss isn't going to be playing in the domestic T20 Cup either. He's really gearing up for the Ashes. Confidence in the English team is probably soaring.

I like it.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

What say? Money or loyalty?

Apparently I was wrong about that post earlier today regarding the Champions League. Weird, because Lalit Modi has decided the players who face a conflict between their IPL team and domestic team can actually choose which team they play for.

We already know the IPL franchise has to reimburse the team they're poaching a player off, but what does this new development mean? Would they have to be willing to offer a higher amount than usual?
"There is already a modus operandi laid down by all the members of the Champions League and which has been accepted by everybody. It is a player's choice to decide which team he is going to play for. The choice is left to the player not to the franchise."

Very strange. If I were a player, I'd probably end up going with my domestic team. Just imagine the praise and glory your countrymen would heap upon you. The public would love you for it, and so would the cricketing authority that governed your country's cricketing league. Why piss off a few important people and take a little extra money in the short term when you could find yourself reaching greater heights in the long term by playing for your country/state.

Dirk Nannes, of course, does not count in any of this. I'm sure he'd wholeheartedly play for Delhi if the time came to make a decision. Unless he feels an extraordinary amount of love for Victoria that we are otherwise unaware of.

Wankers Posing With An Ashes Urn

Apart from talking about their feelings and getting relationship counselling, this is what Cricket Australia is making the boys do at the Ashes training camp. It's the obligatory shots, but oh-so-painful to look at:
Just because that's the best pose ever. His masculinity is overwhelming.

Check out the arm, friends. A wanker indeed.

A glorious model for your every need. Even Brett Lee isn't as pretty as that.

So very photogenic, that Ricky.

There's also a shot of Mitchell Johnson with both a replica urn and a cricket ball. How very formidable.

But perhaps the best one of all is our very own Andrew McDonald, who is not important enough to get the replica ashes urn. I laugh hysterically:

I guess even Cricket Australia don't really like him, despite having picked him for the squad.

For now, all I want is for England's players to be subjected to this same cruelty. It's not fair otherwise to divide the torment unequally.

The Woes of Bopara

Out for 49, so close to that half century.

Not again, he says as he storms off the ground. This is getting pretty fucking ridiculous. He's missed two in a row and suddenly Mitchell Johnson's words are getting to him. Slowly, very gradually, over the next few weeks he begins doubting himself, doubting his abilities. That century in the Test? Long gone. It's all ODIs and failing in the 40s for Bopara now. As the days go by, he finds himself descending into a state of failure-induced insanity. He is the crazy fellow who sits in a corner of the room, rocking silently and muttering the number 49 to himself repeatedly.

Of course, there's a flip side to it all but it's a pretty big flip side, just as this is a pretty long way for Bopara to supposedly fall. And I'm not going to mention it because it's a little scary.

Next match, he says. Next match he'll get that 50. It's only the Windies they're playing anyway.

And his captain has gone ahead and beat him. Bopara cries himself to sleep at the very thought.

"Isn't this the squad England wanted you to pick?"

I laughed. From SMH, a tale of an encounter between Ricky and a rather hilarious BBC correspondent:
When Australian captain Ricky Ponting addressed a packed media room at the SCG last week he was grilled at one point by a commentator from the BBC who thought the whole thing was funnier than a Monty Python skit. "Ricky," he said. "Isn't this the squad England wanted you to pick?" Ponting raised an eyebrow. He brushed him off, albeit politely, for supposedly talking nonsense. But the guffawing bloke from the BBC had a point.
The tense silence after the question had been asked would have been magical. Ricky's an expert at all that stuff.

But you gotta admit, no matter where your loyalties lie, that is pretty fucking funny.

Chk-Chk Boom

I'm sure I'll work out a cricketing connection to the subject of this post in due time. But for now, let me allow Clare Werbeloff's sensation to sweep my blog too:

Alright, here's the cricket connection: I think she watches cricket. Don't you?

"Chk-chk boom" is also making the rounds in parliament. Whodda thunk it?

Another Ashes Player

A real man for you, SixSixEight:

Ah, the wonders of youth. You can practically feel the manliness rolling off him.

The Strangeness of South Africans

In the poll I have been referring to in posts of past. While I understand not all the voters are saffas, a fair lot must be. But I'm looking at the results and just thinking, "Really?"

AB de Villiers 41%
JP Duminy 23%
Johan Botha 11%
Snuh snuh snuh, some people including Graeme Smith and Herschelle Gibbs at 5%
Albie Morkel 3%, tied with Jacques Kallis

Who is rigging this system? Tell me, who? Is Johan Botha really that popular?

I say vote Albie in droves. Just vote Albie, do it. Do it. Do it. If I repeat it enough times, I'm hoping you'll actually do it.

But if you're just generally a cruel person who wants to see Albie languish near the bottom of the table with JACQUES KALLIS for company, at least have the heart to vote JP Duminy. He can catch better than I can, and I'm pretty good at catching things, it's my forte. Only Sybrand Engelbrecht is better than JP (just realised I hadn't mentioned my best friend for a while, so there's the reference). And what's more, if you've watched JP bat you'll never want to convert to ABdom. To top it all off, JP doesn't preach at you.

Of course, I'd much prefer it if you went Albie. Ta.
And yes, I do believe I just said 'ta'. My grandma never said it so often.

Indians Respecting Roy

You've got to admire the man for making an effort in a show of solidarity, but is it possible that perhaps Gilly might have taken his praise too far? After saying he'd have Andrew Symonds in his Ashes squad, as would any mildly sane person I imagine, Gilly goes on to make his point a little farfetched:

"You saw a glimpse of that last year when he only played four games - the respect he had from the Indian players and international players alike. He became an instant favourite in the squad."
Because Symonds just commands respect, especially from Indian cricketers. Good one.

Roy and his biggest fan.

You can keep McDonald

Now that the Delhi Daredevils have qualified for the Champions League, there's a bit of the old tug o' war going on as the relevant IPL franchises are likely to contract their international players at the snap of their fingers (after compensating the player's original team, of course). And with Delhi fielding quite a few influential Aussie players, things are looking slightly more bleak for domestic teams or whatnot.

The most headline-worthy story in the last day has been the likelihood that the Speedblitzing David Warner will be secured by Delhi, leaving a spot open in the Blues' side. And so NSW will consider making an offer to Otago for good old Brendon McCullum, or Baz, as you hip young folks like to call him.

That just opens up a whole new lot of problems.

But if we get back to the roots of this, being the automatic "ownership" of international players by their IPL franchise should it qualify for the tournament, it's not just David Warner the Australians should be worried about. Dirk Nannes will likely be drafted in by Delhi, and I do wonder whether he'll be able to conjure up regret at having to play against the Bushrangers seeing as the Aussies don't seem all that keen to have him in their ranks.

Dirk is the other big fish apart from Warner, but there's also Nathan Bracken, Cameron White, and... dare I say it? Andrew McDonald. While I don't think Bracken or White will be called upon all too soon, I'm even less convinced Delhi will be parting with their money to secure McDonald. As suggested by the title of this post, I'm sure they'd be all too willing to let Victoria keep McDonald.

"...You can have him."

Monday, 25 May 2009

Replacing the Genital Warts Dude

I will try to say as little of this as possible so you can keep down your dinner, but Rao Iftikhar has been selected to replace Shoaib Akhtar in Pakistan's World T20 squad.

In other better news, Albie is now up to 4% in the poll, in equal 5th place or so. He trails AB de Villiers by 41%. Out of a possible 800 people, 32 have voted for Albie. I think we can get there, I really can. Just vote for him. Don't you want to make my dreams come true? I could just stop writing altogether and you'd cry yourself to sleep mourning why you didn't vote for Albie when you had the chance.

A lot is at stake here, including Albie's pride, and therefore my own.

How wrong was I?


From a post a while back:
Then again, who else does Bangalore have now? Nobody, that's what. They're fucked, and I'm not saying that lightly. They are well and truly fucked, and nobody's going to save their asses after KP hops on his private jet for England and slides down giant mountains of cash in his new mansion with glee.

Bangalore went on the make the finals.

But then again, nobody predicted they'd make it this far.

Ricky on winning the Ashes

He really liked it.

A Gentleman Arrives Looking For Cleavage

You Indians sure are dirty fuckers. This just in, someone arriving at this site looking for:
bollywood cleavage anus
Nice to know there's a type of cleavage known as Bollywood and of the anus variety. But it's even nicer to know they referred to it as "cleavage" and "anus" when they could have done far worse.

Edit: It gets better:
sex with mischief gals

Seeing as I am the foremost authority on sex with Mischief Gals.

How the Black Caps will make the semis... again

After their semifinal loss in the 2007 ICC World T20, New Zealand might just sneak through again, in a piece of news certain to similarly put a smile on the faces of Sri Lankans, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis all over the world.

If all these teams beat their opponents in the initial two matches during the qualifying round, they'll find themselves placed in two oddly imbalanced groups for the super eights stage of the tournament. It's hilarious, it really is.

Group A: South Africa, Australia, India, England
Group B: Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, New Zealand

That is, of course, assuming all these teams beat any unseeded teams in the qualifying round. However, should this be the result, the semifinals of the competition will be most amusing to watch.

Based on those groupings, Sri Lanka has an excellent chance of making the semis, and perhaps New Zealand could steal the other spot. Pakistan will be the main competition anyway. But if you glance at Group A, there's sure to be a power struggle between India, Australia and South Africa, all very capable and strong teams.

This is one reason to look forward to the tournament. Imagine the possibilities of the final four. It's too good to be true. Almost a farce, really.

The Unpopularity of Albie Morkel

I actually just noticed a poll on SuperSport, which is of course a South African site so the SA public must frequent it quite a bit, asking people to vote for the SuperSport Fans' Cricketer of the Year. According to them:

The winner will be announced at the 2008/2009 Cricket Awards Ceremony in June - so go on & make your vote count!

I glance down and what I'm met with is a selection of players, Albie being one of them. Ordinarily, I wouldn't give a shit about a poll like this, but it seemed necessary to do my bit to make sure Albie wins this award, whatever it is. So off I go, voting for him, up come the results, and to MY EXTREME HORROR, it is as follows:

Graeme Smith 7%
AB de Villiers 47%
Albie Morkel 1%
Ashwell Prince 1%
Dale Steyn 3%
Hashim Amla 4%
Herschelle Gibbs 6%
Jacques Kallis 1%
JP Duminy 24%
Johan Botha 4%
Lonwabo Tsotsobe 0%
Makhaya Ntini 1%
Mark Boucher 1%
Morne Morkel 0%
Neil McKenzie 1%
Paul Harris 0%
Wayne Parnell 0%

Do you see that set of disgusting results? Out of a total of 135 votes so far, 47% are all over AB de fucking Villiers, and a mere 1% for Albie. This is an outrage. Albie is on an equal standing with Ashwell Prince, Jacques Kallis, Makhaya Ntini, Neil McKenzie and Mark Boucher. So a useless vice-captain, a fat fuck, a rapist, a player who may or may not be retired but nobody gives a shit anyway, and Mark Boucher, who I won't exactly say anything bad about.

The only people less popular than Albie are Tsotsobe, younger brother Morne, Paul Harris and Wayne Parnell. Paul Harris, people. When you're only marginally better than Paul Harris, you ought to be worried.

But the biggest kick of all might be seeing Johan Botha at 4%. Now I know this isn't an official take on the popularity of these cricketers, and only 135 people have voted so far, but if there's going to be an award involved then it better fucking go to Albie so I can one day write up a post about it and gloat as he betters AB. It's what I do.

So what I'm asking all of you to do is to go there and vote for Albie. He needs you, my dear friends. He really does. Help Albie become more popular than JACQUES KALLIS, and assist me in overthrowing AB.

If you - no, when you - vote for Albie, do tell me and you'll win a wonderful PRIZE. Yes, there's a prize involved. Details will be revealed soon. Now go vote for Albie and help him win this useless award. And if you're a sick bastard who can't do this little thing for me, at least vote for JP Duminy, because he's the next most worthy player there.

Ahem. Colly & Broad Highlights

From the ODI against the Windies which they somehow won, bringing their total to 1 out of 1 which is an achievement in itself for the fellows:

It seems the poor ranga got a little too excited winning the match for England. Interestingly enough, I had a fascinating discussion with a very liberal-minded 50 year old lady today about rangas. She was actually talking about the treatment of Germans in the first World War, but for the sake of a comparison, she uttered the words "What if you said 'you're an orangutan!' to a redhead and drove them off the land?" a few too many times. For the record, if you are a redhead, I do love you, even if your soul is corrupted by Satan himself. I was once a voluntary ranga myself back in high school, bet you didn't know that.

However, this isn't a post about rangas, it's about Stuart Broad:

Oh yes.

What's that? You want me to take him seriously? To take Broad seriously?


Is Ajmal a chucker?

The gods have spoken: he is not. The ICC have declared Saeed Ajmal can continue to play cricket after deciding his action is legal.

They don't want to sound like pushovers though, having just cleared Johan Botha, so they're making it clear that they're going to keep one eye on the guy:

"It is important to emphasise that no bowler is ever 'cleared' as it is impossible to predict how a player might deliver the ball in the future."
A good point, but that's half the difficulty of declaring an action legal anyway.

And I believe my tongue is firmly in cheek when I say he doesn't have an arm deformity either.

The IPL is over

The Deccan Chargers have won.

You're now free to sleep as long as you like. I hope you understand how big a blessing this is.

Lalit Modi is planning two IPL tournaments a year. Could you handle it? There's no fucking way I could.

So the IPL is over and we go back to our normal routines. Except for the fact that there's a whole lot of cricket coming up real soon, so start gearing yourselves up for that.

In the meantime, a few suggestions as to what you could do with your time: Read a book, watch a movie, actually play cricket, write an in depth analysis of this year's IPL, walk the dog, kill the cat, call the Fake IPL Player a cowardly bastard with an attractive shadow, cure cancer, etc. The possibilities are endless.

So what are you doing sitting there thinking about the final? Go do something.

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Mike Hussey's contribution to the tournament


Right. Well then...

Bangalore to win the final just because.

Phil Hughes on Sunday Night on Sunday night

I couldn't resist that title, nor a general write-up of the interview, seeing as there are so few.

Before I say anything else, Sunday Night were also airing a piece on "Saving Amy Winehouse" tonight. Coincidence? I think not. They knew I'd be watching.

The interview is a bit on the annoying side. There's a whole lot of Phillip montages accompanied by completely inappropriate dramatic music as they go through his life story. And there's even cheesy jokes about his BANANA! background, including:

"What does it take to make a champion? Answer: bananas. Lots of them. Twelve hectares of them."
That's alongside the opening shot of Phil on the farm with his dad, chopping down some bananas and laughing happily as he celebrates the finer aspects of life. But wait, it's time for another banana joke.

"Phil collects bananas like he collects runs."

Good one.

So as we go through the epic story of his life, Phil tells us that throughout his life, it was playing older guys consistently that gave him the confidence he has. And he speaks of the moment he was presented with his baggy green:

"I was actually shaking when I received it. I was speechless."

Don't let the interview get too serious yet because it's time to show Phil being paraded around his local ground on a green ute, wearing a suit, D&G sunnies, and holding a microphone in his hand. There's also Phil in V-necks, which don't quite gel with his Macksville country boy image. The only consistent portrayal of him is the one of him being a "smiling assassin" - as first stated by Justin Langer. Says Phil of his tendency to smile at the opposition on the pitch:

"There's nothing else to do, so I just smile at them."
You do. And if viewers don't believe him, Channel 7 throw in a dozen shots of Phil smiling.

There's an interesting shot of newspaper clippings probably from the town paper during Phil's early years. At age 11, he was being compared to Don Bradman, but then again, it is a town paper, and he was their only star. To help bring out more country superstars, Phil has set up a scholarship for country boys to help them gain greater access to the cricketing world and assist them in their passage to stardom. That's a pretty nice thing to do, especially so soon after bursting onto the international stage. It's almost better than Run Ricky Run.

And then comes the inane stuff again. Suddenly, the suits are off, the sunglasses are put away, and Phil is on horseback, cantering steadily through the countryside with a cowboy hat, complete with soft guitar music to enhance the setting.

Mike Munro takes the opportunity to hit on Phil's mum (who, by the way, never calls him Phil, only Phillip) when he mentions Phil's smile yet again: "Well, we know where he gets that from, don't we?" Phil's mum giggles a little, Mike flexes his muscles. Phil attacks Munro with his machete.

To end it all, there's the obligatory question of whether he dreams of captaining Australia. Definitely, says Phil. He hopes to some day, when he's older. For now, he's just living the dream.

It's Phil the banana farmer.

Hello again, Brett

Do you remember? Do you?

The test debut of a man who believed he had very lovely hair.

How likeable are Australia?

Yes, I was wondering exactly that when I stumbled across an article in The Times which analyses Australia's weaknesses going into the Ashes. It's a good enough read if only to see how the English are willing themselves quite desperately to believe they have a firm upper hand going into the series, when neither side really does. Of course, as usual, the part that interests me is statistics relating to the likeability of Australian cricketers - their "approval rating" as deemed by parents:
During their camp, the Australians will be told that market research commissioned by Cricket Australia revealed that 81% of the Australian public think the team are good role models for children. This is a vast improvement on a rating of about 20% shortly after the scandal at Sydney but still means one in five Australians disapproves of them. They have never inspired affection.

So it's not just likeability, it's how great of a role model each cricketer is. I'm not surprised at the stat for the India series in 2007-08, because that was pretty shocking at the time. Maybe Peter Roebuck filled in all those votes because he sure as hell had it in for the Aussies back then.

From a purely superficial point of view, the cricketers probably are good role models for children. They do the right things, take part in the right charities, hang out with kids for special events to help them out with their cricketing skills. Kids don't tend to see beyond that initial layer.

As it turns out, we do quite like Glenn McGrath but he's not on the team. His home town is apparently sticking a giant pigeon statue in a park or town square or something in honour of him. Kind of creepy, but it could have been worse if it had been a statue of him.

But the best role model of all is Ricky Ponting, who not only plays cricket with kids at empty stadiums, but encourages them to take their vitamins, simply by association. Marvellous.

Parents all over Australia smile as they down a bottle of vitamins, telling their kids that one day they'll grow up to eat vitamins like mummy and daddy and Ricky Ponting.

The England Conspiracy

Apparently, says Ricky, they changed the venue of the first Ashes test because they knew Australia had a good record at Lord's.
"There was a fair bit of talk about it last time, starting the Ashes at Lord's, given our record. This time around, it will be the second Test match, and I've got no doubt they changed it on purpose."
The sneaky bastards. Or maybe Ricky's giving them too much credit for a smart move.

But if you want to know the real bastards of cricket, check out SouLBW. Just look at that background colour. Shocking. And they even have a photo of Chris Lewis semi-naked. How criminal.

Comparing myself with Manish Pandey

When I was 19, I was busy skipping classes at uni. Clearly, he's not.

The end.

The better team won today. Bangalore batted well, fielded well, and bowled well. They also managed to do each of these better than Chennai, so they deserved that win in every way. I find myself okay with that, and if it's not heresy to say so, throughout the match I didn't quite mind BRC's onslaught against CSK bowlers.

As the commentators have reminded us about a hundred times, the No. 7 and No. 8 teams from last year will be meeting in the final this year. Just because I like some of their players more, I'm going Bangalore. But it would be good to see Deccan win the tournament this time.

If you're interested, Ryan Campbell and Corey Wingard are all over Pandey's name. Apparently it's "Pandy" as in "Mandy".

Semi-finals, being crap, and the number 146

What is that really? 146. What a pathetically shit score from a team that's supposed to have an excellent batting line-up, and who are going to give away 20 runs or so later in the game through misfields.

It just doesn't make sense. I suppose we should have known. From the moment those Mischief Gals were doing their circus troupe act during the pitch report, Chennai were doomed to make a relatively low or "okay" kind of score. Just on that point, Sunny Gavaskar made reference to the Mischief Gals' "curves". Dream on, mate.

Strangely enough, Parthiv Patel turned out to be the real menace today, like the little fucker he is. He was appointed the team maniac and I found myself smiling at his midget antics. Good going there.

So Chennai dropped off one by one, until Albie stepped out into the Bullring. And being such a sick bastard who only wants sons as children, he stopped Kumble during his run-up, and then promptly hit him for six the next ball. The last ball of the innings was also interesting. What do you reckon, was it a four or a six?

Some points of concern within the Bangalore team:
  • Kumble looks absolutely ancient chasing balls to the boundary.
  • Jacques Kallis really needs to shave off that tuft of hair in an otherwise bald spot. It's like some horrible head fungus. Although, you cannot even begin to imagine the thrill of seeing him be treated with disdain by batsmen.
  • Praveen Kumar looked spastic after the Raina wicket. What was up with that and what medication has Ray Jennings got him on?

All very pertinent questions which I'm sure will be answered in the BRC innings, in which CSK bowlers will have to step up or they're well and truly fucked.

By the way, caught sight of Mike Hussey on the sidelines. So stupid.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Why Kevin is better than John Howard

A follow-up to my previous post:

Because Johnny can't bowl for shit.

I cannot possibly even begin to imagine how many times that footage has been replayed in various places. It's infamous beyond belief.

Kevin Rudd Makes a Cricket Joke

For all you fuckers who insisted he couldn't be funny, take this from his Twitter (oh yes, very high tech, that Kev):
Was at SCG this morning with Ricky Ponting passing on best for the upcoming Ashes tour. Ricky wisely turned down my offer to help him out with a few overs in the nets.

Just keep those cricket jokes coming, Kevin. You'll be popular again.

The Middle East goes Stanford

Oh the hilarity. The ECB has rejected three offers to play in the infamous one-off matches the very criminal Allen Stanford financed last year. And this time, it's the owners of petrodollars looking to strike a shady deal with the ECB:

The origin of the offers has not been revealed, although it is understood at least one came from the Middle East.
I do believe it would be just perfect if there was an oil tycoon behind this, but then that'd be a little stereotypical now, wouldn't it?

Don't care. Onward with the oil barons looking to organise their own Sheikh's Superstars XI, and going on to beat England with that same team.

No bars - the future of cricket.

Islamabad Leopards won't sleep with Shoaib

Apparently the domestic Pakistan team Shoaib Akhtar plays for, the Islamabad Leopards, are willing to have him in their ranks despite his dirty diseased body parts. They also have the least slutty players in the whole world, minus the man himself, so they're more than willing to take him on with minimal risk.

In the domestic Twenty20 cup, Shoaib will captain for his team, having recovered from the intense embarrassment that is having your genital warts called out on by the Pakistan Cricket Board. Too good, really. But also disturbing. More disturbing than funny.
"He (Akhtar) has told us that he is fit so we have no reason to drop him," Islamabad Cricket Association president Shakil Shaikh told the Associated Press. "It's the basic fundamental right of the player that if he says he is fit you can't stop him from playing."
So there ya go. Either everyone in that team already has herpes, or they're naturally immune to it through some freak occurrence of nature.

A Trip Down Memory Lane at WWOS

Oh, will you just look at that? The height of technological advancements, so very brilliant. The infamous tune, and an overlay of cricket footage accompanying a photo still of a storm.

In the words of Richie Benaud, marvellous.

Mike Hussey returns to the IPL, for real this time

All those times I lied about him coming back, I was just fucking with you bastards. This time it's real and it's serious: Mike Hussey is back in the tournament for its conclusion. I don't know why at all. It's a bit of an idiotic thing to do. Maybe he senses his end is near or something, smelling death. If that's true, it'd be disappointing he gave up so quickly, because why would you back out of the tournament only to return for the [possible] last match?

Doesn't matter. Chennai will win today. I think. Bangalore aren't that great, they just have a lot of saffas, who Albie will hopefully dropkick out of the stadium. Hopefully, my dears. Hopefully.

Shopping With Dhoni

It's still happening. Oh god, stop it.

After two other creepy meetings with VB Chandrasekar, it's still going on.
The entire team went on a shopping spree as soon as we landed in Jo’burg. It was a huge store housing some of the finest brands in clothing, watches, sunglasses and jewelry offered at special prices. Dhoni, wearing designer clothes, looked very relaxed as I bumped into him a couple of times in the hotel lobby.

Yes, Dhoni was just relaxing in his designer clothes, having been on a shopping spree only hours earlier.

So Dhoni not only has private lunches with Raina sitting in his lap, but he also winks secretly at people and goes on shopping sprees, only to be seen relaxing in his designer outfit afterwards.

This is not the Dhoni I thought existed.

England's Worst Nightmares Come True

Phil Hughes has been keeping notes on England's bowlers... and Andrew Strauss.

Already, national selectors are crying out in outrage, demanding Middlesex hire a hitman to get rid of Hughes before he gets to the WAG training camp and passes on this secret information to Ponting. The ECB had dispatched Andre Nel to do the dirty work for them, but he failed, having had an attack of the Gunther which rendered him unable to come within 5 metres of Phil Hughes without being repelled by a powerful magnetic force.

So it's up to Middlesex, or this little fellow will be spilling the beans in a highly competitive Ashes year. Because England's fears weren't irrational from the start, right? Clearly Middlesex were out to fuck up the national team's chances of beating Australia.

From SMH, in an article which slightly takes the piss out of the poms:
"I'll be talking to the boys about a few things that happened over there. The second championship game we played, I got to meet him [Strauss] a couple of days before the game, and then we got to bat together for nearly a whole day. We spent a fair bit of time together."
You see that? He'll be talking to the boys. Better get him in a "freak accident" on the banana farm before it's too late.
"Thing is, though, and no one has even mentioned it, I batted with him for so long, I got the chance to look at him, too."
The only question that remains is, when will Geoff Miller get on Middlesex's case about this if he hears about it? And will the Wing Commander come out with a few comments of his own relating to having observed Hughes for a lengthy period of time? Questions, questions, questions.

Also, be sure to catch the interview with Phil on Sunday Night. I saw the previews for it and it looks horrifying.

Albie Morkel and the Afternoon Siesta

Boncam sends in an interesting link to an interview with Albie on Cricinfo.

Where do I start? Right, apparently he's going to have a BABY. I actually glanced over that line completely and noticed it a while later. It was a bit of a WTF moment.
Tell us something we don't know about you.
Come December, I will be a father of a boy.

Well done, Albie. I'm sure when he retires, he'll surreptitiously slip in that news in an interview too, as if it's no big deal at all. "Oh, by the way, I'M RETIRING, bitches."

Apart from that rather interesting development, the interview is actually quite good. When asked what he told Morne after replacing him for his Test debut:
I didn't really say anything much. Obviously it was a big disappointment for him, but on the other hand it was happiness for me. He was supportive of me on my debut and I was supportive of him since he was dropped.

I find that inexplicably funny. He was supportive of him since he was dropped, while at the same time, secretly happy for himself. I bet the conversations between the two would have been immensely awkward following that.
If you were running cricket, what's the one change you would make?
I'd make the lunch interval in four-day games about two hours long, so we can have an afternoon siesta.

Look, Albie, you can be funny too. Amazing.

But possibly the best thing of all is a hilarious question about ROFL:
Does Roelof van der Merwe ever look at the ball when he hits it?
You're gonna have to ask him. Yes, it looks weird on TV: his head is down while he hits over point for six. He is pretty unique, but I'm sure he watches the ball.

I'm sure many others were wondering exactly the same thing.

The Gilchrist Offensive

Pretty good, don't you reckon?

Okay, not just pretty good, but pretty fucking good. Just as the papers and headlines were talking about Shoaib's genital warts yesterday, it's Gilly all the way today. It was a great effort in the end which knocked the top dogs out of the competition.

I still don't like the look of him in that uniform. It highlights his more creepy qualities, and I couldn't for the live of me tell you what they are. It's intangible, the creepiness that blue uniform instils in Gilchrist.

According to Cricinfo, Gilly's opening partner Gibbs has gotten out for the most ducks this tournament, that being 4. I actually thought the honour would belong to a BRC player but they didn't give their openers enough games to do so. But maybe there should be an enquiry into Gibbs after the ridiculous KKR one involving Hodge being left out of the game. The fact that DC still succeeded despite Gibbs' duck just gives the idea more credibility. He was never good at fixing the game anyway.

Deccan Chargers finished up the match in the 18th over. In a semifinal. That's just really fucked up on some level, and I'm sure Delhi realise it. What's more, I'm sure AB realises it. No glory for him.

To mourn the loss of Delhi, if you're a fan of theirs, the infamous Page 2 has an interview with Dirk, which mostly seems to be about how much his kid wants to go to the beach. But there's some real gems in there:
"If I am not good enough to be in the top 30 Australian cricketers, I will eat my hat."
I can't think of another cricketer who would say that, and there should be more that do. But I'll eat my hat to that too.
You know the best compliment I got in this IPL? It came from AB [de Villiers]. He said, you have a beautiful family, fantastic kids and a wonderful wife. What more can I ask for?
And you also have God, Dirk. You also have God.

Friday, 22 May 2009

Cocky Binga

He says he's not being cocky, but as soon as you say that, you give your whole game away. Brett Lee gets confident about his ability to perform in the Ashes:
"I knew I'd done the hard work. I don't want to sound cocky, and I know I haven't played much lately, but I was confident I'd be picked once I'd done the work. I was hoping my 300-odd Test wickets would speak for themselves; my 10 years of playing with the Australian team."

If only he'd slipped in even more statistics of his brilliance.
"My body feels great. The last 18 or 19 weeks I've worked extremely hard, a lot of gym and cardio work, and I'm bowling at 150-odd now. I'm only four games into it so getting back to that sort of pace so early, it just really excites me because I'm still two or three months away from being at top pace."

Brett expects to be topping 180 in a few months. Yeah, that good. Breaking records is an everyday occurrence for him, that silly bastard. You'd think so from his incredible enthusiasm.

If you didn't know better, you'd almost expect him to do brilliantly from word go in England. The only problem is, Brett isn't very consistent or stable in his performances. Maybe that extra weight and muscle he gained in a crazy steroids operation will give him the edge this time. His bowling figures sure don't show signs of his supposed position as being Australia's best fast bowler. I believe that title belongs to Mitchell Johnson now.

Top Banana

I don't quite know what to make of this article, and our very own farmer boy Phillip Hughes.

Apart from carrying on the legacy of the Hughes family banana fetish, Phil reckons he wants to retire to Macksville and run a stud cattle farm.

"Hopefully we will have a pretty big property and have stud cattle on there. That's my dream."

Keep in mind not all Australians are farmers.

Phil Hughes has gone from shitting himself with glory in England to lugging bananas around with his dad, ahead of the Ashes training camp (which appears to be a conservative dickhead's version of the crazy military in-the-bush camp before the '07 Ashes). But which life does he prefer? THE BANANA ONE, OF COURSE. I'm trying to slip in the word banana as many times as I can, just because it sounds ridiculous.

If nothing else is of interest to you, let it be known that Phil Hughes has a machete. I'm excited. That has always been my weapon of choice.

The BANANA! interview is going to be broadcast on Sunday Night on Channel 7. "Sunday Night" the show, not the day, although it is also the date. I've never watched it because it seems like Today Tonight for the weekend, but if they can get Kevin Rudd to throw shitstorms around the place, surely they can extract some useful information from Hughes.

As it turns out, they have. The bogans are already onto him about his ear piercing:

"Yeah, when I get back there's a bit of cheek there. They ask if I have turned into a city boy now."

"Ya turned into a city boy now, mate?" Said in a very real Aussie twang you find in country towns, and not the normal accent Phil Hughes has, because if Phil Hughes has an Aussie twang, so do I and fuck me if I'm going to say I do. Clearly the broad Australian accent is more appropriately described as a "twang".


The Semifinals Arrive

I am officially back in Sydney, friends, and therefore available to watch the semifinals and finals of the IPL at my leisure.

So the semis are here. Finally. Over the past week, I've been feeling rather disillusioned by the tournament, as though the finals just won't arrive. And now they have, so it's time to gently guide yourself into caring slightly about the games, or do nothing if you'd already been frenetic in a state of overwhelming excitement. As it is, I'm one of the first, so it's taking a little something to make myself want to watch the first match between Delhi and Deccan. Especially when I dread the possibility a certain player will do his usual stuff and singlehandedly win the match for his team.

To be honest, Delhi are favourites to win this year's title. The only way that won't happen is if in the final, they fuck up big time and have one huge brain explosion which gives the opposing team the edge. If DD play consistently and to their strengths, they should be able to win the tournament easily enough.

The old bloke on the team they haven't played yet in favour of Dirk Nannes reckons he might be out of it next year. A bit disappointing, seeing as he could easily have been one of their best performers, but for once, there's a team in the IPL that's struggling to get all their best players in as much as Delhi are. I'm pretty sure no other team has a man like Glenn McGrath on the sidelines because the other players are so talented. Says Glenn:
"I have asked a couple of people about why I was not being played, and I get the sense that they were worried about my fitness. I feel fitter than I did last year, but I guess I will not get a chance to prove that now."

His fitness, hey? He also says he "would not bet on returning" next year.

I'm also very cleverly refusing to comment on a certain revelation involving Shoaib Akhtar and his busy dick. I cannot bring myself to even contemplate doing so, it's just that bad. Although I did say in an earlier post sometime that it was groin problem. But will you just look at the manwhore walked around with his herpes? Pakistan shouldn't have said anything about it and just let half the world's cricketers get infected during the ICC World T20. Because you know they would.