Links of note from the past 24 hours:
Update: review of Paul Smith’s Wasted? at Cricinfo.
One of my early memories of cricket is watching Paul Smith tear in to bowl off an inordinately long run-up, arms flaying around, long hair, “flinging” down his medium pacers. He was nothing special but the rebel in me respected his unconformity. He was rock’n’roll, a bit crazy, and just the type of cricketer an 11-year-old tried wished he could be. And it turns out he’s written a book.
It could be very, very dull; he fell into drugs, lost his wife and children and so forth, so it might be one of those sickly autobiographies in which he’s found God, or peace within himself, or finds knitting a good way to stave the cravings. If and when I get a copy, I’ll let you know what it reveals – or buy your own from Amazon, and help pay for the exploding costs of running this site…
I’ve been out of action for a few days drinking my bodyweight and trying to ignore the fact I’m now closer to 30 than 20. Not to mention a flurry of “you’re halfway to 50 you old bastard” texts.
What better way to cure my groggy mind than to understand the Shoaib and Asif affair?
- They test positive for Nando Bannedo
- They are banned
- The ban is overturned. Lots of people go mentalist at the decision
- Somehow, they “avoid” a PCB dope test (last week). That was clever
- They both pick up a couple of injuries. Smoke and mirrors
- Off to the airport. The team all sing reggae in the bus, Inzamam on the steel drums
- Oh but hang on, the injuries are too bad, too serious. GET OFF THE BUS NOW
“The truth is both of them are injured and they may take even months to make a full recovery,” Nasim Ashraf said, with fingers, arms and legs firmly crossed. “The board’s medical panel will soon check them out but the chances of them recovering quickly from their injuries is very bleak.”
Complete and utter farce. But they’re not banned, they’re injured. Just in case you forget.
Performance-enhancing drugs aren’t common (as far as we know) in cricket. In football, athletics and basketball – yes – but not cricket. Not yet, anyway.
Tim May, the chief executive of the Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations (FICA), has said in this month’s Wisden Cricketer magazine players may be forced to use drugs in an effort to sustain themselves, given the amount of cricket they play.
You only have to look at the doping record in baseball to see that recovery, not enhanced power, is the motivation for most drug misuse. The more we push players the more they might look at options.”
Worrying indeed. Thoughts?
You go away for a weekend, and look what happens? Dermot Reeve has quit Channel 4, where he was a commentator for 5 years, due to his announcement that he’s addicted to cocaine. No great loss, really – he’s a jumped-up twit – and no great suprise, either. His repetoire consisted of “Faaantastic shot” and “WOW.” Not the most intelligent of cricket commentators.
Reeve also suggested there was widespread use of “illegal substances” within cricket when he played. “If every cricketer I knew at the time I played was banned from playing, you would not have seen very good teams out there,” he said.
Make your own judgements from that, I guess.
Warwickshire ‘keeper Keith Piper has been summoned to an ECB disciplinary panel for testing positive on a “recreational drug.” Unfortunate surname to have, “Piper,” but not as a bad as Mr Bong, Mrs Roach, or “James Ecstasy Tablet” I suppose. Most newspapers are calling Piper Mr Anonymous, apart from the Daily Telegraph who obviously don’t think much of him
 NB: I don’t know anyone called James Ecstasy-Tablet