Monty Panesar DVD – Monty’s Cricket Madness

Dear, dear – oh dear oh dear. The premise behind this tacky-sounding DVD is either a stroke of ingenuity or a bear trap. The DVD promises “a bumper collection of cricket gaffes and goofs” which have been “proudly picked by the Barmy Army”.

In how many of the gaffes will the presenter be appearing, I wonder? Place your orders

Freddie Flintoff – the official DVD

Freddie Flintoff - The Official DVD

Not sure I’ve mentioned this, but Flintoff’s “official” DVD (would it be anything other than official?) is out, priced £14.99. Looks good.

Simon ‘Yozza’ Hughes on the BBC


Bugger. Just missed Simon ‘Yozza’ Hughes on the BBC’s programme Loose Ends, who was speaking to promote his new book (which will be good). He also mentioned he’s been working on a DVD with, guess who, Andrew Flintoff. You can pre-order it at Amazon for about £15. Flintoff must surely now be the most marketable English cricketer, certainly since Botham but perhaps of all time.

Who’s tiring of it/him then?! I just hope he can continue his cricketing-brilliance this winter, next summer and beyond – I don’t give a shit about all the houses he buys or whatever advert/product he wants to promote.

Oh, Hughes’s thing on the radio should be up on the Beeb’s site tomorrow.

Flintoff: a player with ‘a great sense of fun’

Watching the highlights of The Oval in The Ashes DVD set, Mark Nicholas said of Andrew Flintoff “…huge personality, a great sense of fun, with an ability that almost defies belief.” The bit about his ability is slightly over the top, but his remark about Flintoff’s obvious sense of fun is interesting (and correct). It is perhaps this, more than simply his skill, which endears him to the public: he loves what he does. Fielding, catching, bowling and batting – he loves it, and does it with a big, broad, Lancastrian smile. He’s a bloody legend. You can tell I’ve loved watching the highlights all over again. Aussies: be warned, they’ll make you weep.

The Ashes – The Greatest Series DVD

I’m crook, with some virus/flu/crap but thankfully I have my three-DVD set of The Ashes to watch. It’s bloody excellent. Unlike one of the highlights packages which was on Channel 4 shortly after the series, these DVDs haven’t mucked around with the footage or the sound. I’m watching the Edgbaston Test, and what struck me immediately was Kevin Pietersen’s innings.

Flintoff got things going, but some of the shots Pietersen struck were astonishing. Flicked sixes to leg, flourishing cover drives…how good could this bloke become?

The DVD set is really excellent; would make an excellent present for someone, and I’m relieved they’ve gone to the effort of making it a 3-set deal. 10 hours running time, including some extras – 10 hours! Get it!

Ashes DVDs and a couple of books

My 3-set Ashes DVD (£14.99) has been dispatched by Amazon – a weekend of beer, pizza and cricket awaits some time in the next couple of weeks! Also, two other books of note:

1) Simon Hughes’ new book, Morning Everyone, is released on October 20 (Thursday). A lot to live up to after his previous two books.

2) Gideon Haigh’s Ashes 2005. One of the best writers around, this should be an excellent – and one of the better – accounts of this summer’s Ashes. Out, too, on October 20.

So rare to have a feast of cricket-DVD-and-book’age happening – and it’s far too long to wait for Christmas! – so get ‘em now like I have.

Cricket books and DVDs coming soon

I confess to not reading a great deal of cricket books. The last, and best, was Rain Men by Marcus Berkmann (thoughts on this here) which, according to Amazon, is now called Rain Men: The Madness of Cricket, which is perfectly apt.

Now the Ashes are safely back home (!), there are a flurry of books and DVDs coming out in their/our honour, all of which I suggest you pre-order from Amazon – and you can do that via me, to give me some extra money, by clicking on the links below!

Calling the Shots: The Captain\'s Story

First up is Michael Vaughan’s Calling the Shots which promises a rare insight into the mind of a captain. Not only that, but the mind of an English Ashes-winning captain – a must-read, therefore. Release-date November 7 2005, £11.39

Ashes Diary

Next is an Ashes Diary by The England Cricket Team. It could just be a load of photos, but is likely to make interesting reading. Release-date September 29, 2005, £10.79

Ashes 2005: The Full Story of the Test Series

I’ve mentioned Gideon Haigh before, and his latest book ought to be well worth reading. Ashes 2005: The Full Story of the Test Series. He’s one of the better cricket writers in the world at the moment, writes for The Guardian and almost everyone else. Release-date October 20, 2005, £6.99 (bargain, that one)

The Ashes - England V Australia 2005

Perhaps most excitingly of all, a three-set DVD of the entire Test Series! The Ashes – England v Australia 2005. It’s Amazon’s top-selling DVD at the moment. Get this NOW! Release-date October 17, 2005, £14.99

Morning Everyone: A Sportswriter\'s Life

As mentioned in January, Simon Hughes’ new book arrives on our shelves in October. His previous ones have been excellent, and this one should be equally entertaining. Morning Everyone: A Sportswriter’s Life. Release-date, October 20, 2005, £10.19

The Greatest Test

This one is available now; The Greatest Test, highlights of the Edgbaston nail-biter. You know you want it. £9.99

What a load of Ashes goodness there is – enough to keep you going for months. Enjoy!

Bangladesh – Australia DVDs

OK – apologies to those who haven’t received an email from me about these DVDs. I’ve been up to my neck in things lately, and start a new job next week – so please be patient. It also won’t help your cause if you a) swear or b) email me every five minutes.

Part of the problem is with the DVD types (+/-/R/RW), and some of you won’t be able to view them. Hang in there, and I’ll be in touch as soon as my feet touch the ground.

Cricket television coverage

It seems live cricket has died on terrestrial TV in Britain, or at least it has a “death date” starting 2006, as I mentioned back in November. Ofcom has agreed BSkyB a 4 year deal, isolating the British public from watching Cricket on the box. At least The Ashes will still be on C4 this year. On a similar note, what is happening about Australia’s coverage of the Ashes?

For those who want/need it, I’ll be providing DVD highlights of the Ashes after each Test (just need a blank DVD or 3 and for you to pay the postage). More on that later in the year.