For God’s sake, be quiet

I never thought I’d say this, but anyway. I left work an hour or so ago and retreated to a cafe near where I live. On the way back, a call I was expecting to receive came through so I ran to the library to sort it and some other stuff out. Here I am, with a stupid time-limit – ticking away, reminding me I’m only allowed here for another 30 minutes and 29, 28, 27, 26 seconds…

and it’s a bloody free-for-all.

There’s a Slovak arguing with someone two PCs down; an impossibly large, elderly woman is asking anyone who can be bothered to listen “How do I print my floppy?”; and meanwhile, the woman next to me has clearly signed up to the “I Can Speak Louder Than You” competition. And by the way, she LOVED the concert last night.

Now, since moving to London I’ve realised the great benefits libraries offer, especially to the impoverished like me (or any twenty-year-old working in London!). And yes, the last time I set foot in one I was an irritable, impressionable little scumbag who delighted at winding up librarians. Not now. I’m older, embittered, SO PLEASE SHUT UP AND LET ME WORK!

South Africa v Sri Lanka, VB Series, Perth

What a dull match. It threatened interest when Murali grabbed a couple during South Africa’s run chase, but ultimately Sri Lanka were doomed after the 20th over (thereabouts; I’ve been up since 4am bulletining the game, so forgive any tiredness-induced inaccuracies). They lost 9 for 85! Utter carnage, and such a waste too.

Sanath Jayasuriya played beautifully, and ought to have been raising his bat to the crowds for another hundred; his lazy cut into the hands of seemed to send shivers down the Sri Lankans’ spines. To a man, their response to Jayasuriya’s downfall was to replicate it to the best of their ability: poor shots; lazy shots; silly shots; and the running between the wickets was laughable.

It’s a shame when teams let themselves down. Sri Lanka have so much ability, you do wonder how good they could become if they added consistency and responsibility to their bow. Now go and read my bulletin.

An insight into Australian club cricket

No, I’m not talking about the bloke who last week threatened to kill an umpire (true). This gem comes from Stu – whose blog is one of the many I don’t have time to read as often as I’d like – who was a regular here during the Ashes, when everyone went Kricket Krazy.

Here’s a copy of an email I received this afternoon from my cricket club, which I feel beautifully displays the nature of the majority of Australian Club Cricket (this is verbatim!):

Subject : Thursday Night Training

Watto wishes to let all players know there will be no Thursday night
training this week, due to Australia day Public Holiday and the expected heat
However Browny has expressed his desire to open the bar. If
anyone if interested in training or attending the Bar can you give him a quick

There’s nothing wrong with South African domestic cricket

There’s nothing wrong with South African domestic cricket, aptly (and amply) demonstrated by these photos. Clearly they have oodles of talent (sorry).

Is she lost?

Dear God, what levels I have sunk to. I promise, one day, I’ll resume writing on this blog and not swearing profusely. Or posting pictures of massively attractive bok women.

But wait, look! More cheerleaders at the cricket! Can’t see the MCC or Lord’s being persuaded though, can you?

Derelict cricket clubs

Highbury CC

Originally uploaded by Jim Moran.

Bleh. Sad sight, this, for the cricket fan, but it does remind me of TWC’s “Adopt a Club” scheme which this would perhaps benefit from.

Most inappropriate celebrity cricket commentators

Disclaimer: I have flu. I’m not thinking very straight. I don’t swear too much on this blog, so you’ll forgive the humourous outburst in this post as I amuse myself with a little story.

This is an old pub favourite of mine, usually only attempted after at least five or six pints, or at least when inhibitions don’t prevent you from acting out (as loud as possible) your best Samuel L Jackson impersonation. So. Who would be the most inappropriate celebrities to commentate on a cricket match and why?

Samuel L Jackson has to be one of my best, purely for that magically eloquent phrase, “You Motherfucker.” Picture the scene: Henry Blofeld is waffling uncontrollably at the mic, like the ageing cravate-wearing god of waffle he is; his producer, Peter Baxter, is tearing out what little hair he has left after a lifetime listening to Blowers’ fascination about red buses and curiously brown pigeons. And many other things. On comes Samuel, and the change immediately brings a a wicket:

“Yo, here comes Harmison and FUCK if aint got himself a wicket. That mother******’s bowled Afridi all over the mother******* shop. Yo bitch, you outta there!”

Baffled, Blofeld returns with a surprising and contrasting grace and ease of word. Jackson is sacked.

For entirely different reasons, The Rt. Hon. Tony Blair would also be utterly inappropriate as a cricket commentator. Even wedged between the uber-smooth Benaud / Nicholas combination, he’d out-shmooze Shiny Mark with such ease that Nicho would be reduced to his party-piece: taking off his wig and waving it around like a bafoon. Worse, though, would be our Tony’s handling of arguments that would arise in the comm box.

“Ambrosia. I think you meant Ambrose, there, Chony,” quips Benaud with unruffled glee. Nicho’s professional, but even he can’t hide a chuckle. Atherton’s on the floor, crying with laughter. Greig and Botham not sure what’s so funny; Botham assumes everyone’s laughing at him and smacks them with bats.

“Huh. Right, yeah – ok, hang on guys,” says Tony. “Look, I mean, you know, Gordon and I have been…oh no, wrong situation. [hands closed, palms facing inward in priest-like display of honesty to the thousands of listeners who can't see him.] Cherie and I are committed to…oh that’s not it either is it. Er, right, Euan apologies profusely to McEwans, he won’t do it again.”

Blair is sacked.

You see, we take our commentators for granted. They’re not a bad bunch, though; Nicho, as much as I’ve cringed and squirmed, is peerless these days as a presenter. He’s bloody brilliant, and his shiny shmoozing adds to the overal Nicho package. Celebrity commentators? Who’d have em?

Who would be your most inappropriate celebrities to commentate on a cricket match and why?

I’m not chasing loose women

Far be it for me to turn this into a public “Where’s Will” thing, but I felt it pertinent to reply to Scott’s shameful accusations of me “chasing loose women.” More’s the pity. I’m not doing that, nor am I entrenched in an alcoholic stupor…I’ve got bloody flu again, and feel like death warmed up. The closest I’ve come to anything Scott has inferred is being high on Day Night Nurse…!


First over of the Third Test, and Irfan Pathan takes a hat-trick. Good stuff, I like that guy, and good to see the poor bowlers get some joy in this series. I hope that no innings goes over 200.

Athers on Vaughan, captaincy and India

I don’t know where Will is either. Probably drinking or chasing loose women or something. You know how young men run amok these days. Anyway, after a bad effort last week, Athers is doing much better this Sunday, a good column where he interviews Michael Vaughan. They talk about leadership, batting, going to India, and all that sort of thing

Periods of the England captaincy brought on mouth ulcers and sore throats for me. Does Vaughan suffer any physical symptoms of stress? “Throughout the Oval Test I had a lump in my stomach. It was more than just the knotty feeling you get when you’re nervous, and it just sat there and wouldn’t go away. I didn’t enjoy that match at all. I felt physically sick for most of it. I knew we hadn’t got enough runs in the first innings and that it was going down to the wire.”

Vaughan’s great achievement, of course, was to hide all these signs from his team and the general public. He looked as if he was enjoying the pressure and revelling in the occasion. It enabled his team to do the same. The Ashes victory, more than anything else, was a personal triumph for the captain.

Yeah, well, I was feeling physically sick just watching it. Since as an Aussie we were on the losing side, I felt worse afterwards.

And if any readers find Will, can you post bail and return him to work? Thanks in advance.

Who ate all the pies?

Darren Lehmann has nominated fellow fattie Mark Cosgrove to be Australia’s new batting sensation who can win the 2007 World Cup for Australia. Cosgrove was so fat at the start of the season that the South Australian selectors told him to put down that pie and lose some weight before they’d consider him. To the lad’s credit, he’s shrunk enough to get back into the side, and has had a merry old time of it in both forms of the game. He’s still a figure of substance though, and I can’t imagine the selectors liking his fielding atheleticism too much.

While I don’t think Cosgrove will get in for 2007 World Cup, he may well feature in the baggy green afterwards, because he’s quality. And speaking as a fellow-fattie, I think it’s a myth that only skinny weedy guys can be good fielders. With Merv Hughes on the selection panel, I’d like to think that Cosgrove has a chance, but after muching on it, you have to admit he’s a real outsider.