Friday, December 31, 2010

WA vs Test vs Twenty20 vs Tasmania

I won’t lie, I had drafted most of this post mentally before I even got to the game tonight. I just can’t seem to really enjoy Twenty20. There is nothing exciting about 6, 6, W, 6, . ,4 when it happens every over. And when the boundary has been brought in about 4 metres, 6s and 4s are hardly impressive. A maiden over is ten times more exciting in Twenty20 in my humble opinion. And wickets flow so much they seem to mean nothing. Tonight’s match, while enjoyable due to the company, the umpire getting creamed by a ball along with Paine, the incredible amount of mix-ups and fumbles, just lacked something for me.

But despite the ultra vanilla feeling this evening’s match had, people still seem to rave about Twenty20. And it really gets my goat. Test cricket is hands down more interesting and more skillful yet I have to put up with bogans telling me how dull I am because I would rather go to a Test match. But it seems, as it was harder to get parking tonight than it was during the WHOLE 3rd Ashes Test, I am in the minority.

Here is how I see it:

Test cricket is the poor journalist who started life in the bottom rungs of the ABC. She worked hard everyday, checked all her sources twice, went on coffee runs for her superiors and one day was given the opportunity to be a fill in for a particularly ill Karina Calvalho. Sure she was a bit nervous, and was a little chubbier than all the other newsreaders, but she did a damn good job and held her self with poise and dignity.

A few weeks later a brassy young woman came to the ABC. Her name was T20. She was blonde, with legs up to her fabulously rounded bosoms. She wore short skirts, low-cut tops and was completely aloof to the importance of journalistic integrity. Once again Karina was sick, but this time, it was T20 who was called upon. She was charismatic-less, laughed on live television, fumbled her lines and on occasion looked at the wrong camera. Later that week a position came up for the late-night business news and you and I both know how this story ends.

Test cricket did ALL the work and now getting walked over by its inferior, lazy, retarded second cousin.

OK, so I guess I should talk about the match. Vanilla? Yes. Lacklustre? Yes.

Surprise, surprise, the Warriors were trounced. It seems to me that as well as having an international team in complete dissary, WA has to have a shoddy state team too.

Ronchi, who once (a long, long time ago…) looked like he might even be Test team material was terrible with the bat and the gloves. Early in the innings he let a ball fly through that I am convinced a blind midget in a wheelchair could have stopped.

There just never seemed to be any urgency in their batting. Maybe someone didn’t tell them they only had 20 overs? Or maybe they are trying desperately to hang onto the skills that were drilled into them about not making cheap shots and protecting your wicket…that said…it didn’t stop them from getting out.

Tasmania seemed to have a better bearing on the whole idea of Twenty20.

So Tim Paine got MOTM. Why? Because he got the most RUNS! Forget his absurdly awful performance with the gloves, he hit the ball the ‘mostest’ and that makes him the king! Pants it does!

I also noticed Mark Cosgrove is now sporting the Tasmanian colours…I am sure this happened ages ago, I am just way out of touch. I love the way all the lads look rather dapper in their uniforms, and then there is Cosgrove who looks like a chubby little kid in ill-fitting pyjamas.

And speaking of pyjamas, I should probably get into mine and hop into bed. Night.

By Ruth.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Party town Jamaica

Chris Gayle is a man with his priorities in order.

"I didn't follow much of [the Ashes] because it kind of clashed with my party events in Jamaica."

While not in Jamaica, I suspect this may have been a factor in Australia's performance too.

You only have to look at Michael Clarke's Twitter feed to note how dismissive he has been of something incredibly important to the rest of us. Like... "We worked out the answer... I will be fielding with Brad Haddins wicket keeping gloves on next test so I should be right catching.." (Nov 30, 2010).

Uhhuh. This is clearly a boy girl man person whose priorities are seriously misordered, or is too stupid to know when to shut his mouth. Either way @MClarke23, I'm glad you think it's funny.


Chris Gayle's priorities are definitely in the right order; he's here to play for the Warriors in the Big Bash competition. Despite my relative loathing of Twenty20 and its destructive ways, I'll be at the WACA tonight to watch us get annihilated play Tasmania.

Now the WACA is no MCG, don't get me wrong, it's not a big place. But last year he hit a six to the top of the Lillee-Marsh stand. And that's something I'd very much like to see.*

Also. I want to party with Chris Gayle.

*It'll be a golden duck because I'm there, now, mark my words.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The captaincy dilemma

Back in August 2009 I spoke to Michelle Crowther on ABC radio in Darwin, and I expressed concern about Shane Watson. You know things are bleak when you're relying on him. Agree? Much has come to pass since then, and I've almost come to terms with him opening for Australia now.


And now, by lack of alternatives, it seems he's leadership material.

While Michael Hussey may, this week, seem a reasonable option, it's not ideal. Firstly, age is not on his side (he'll be 36 in May). His current form has been nothing if not surprising, so he's not exactly consistent. Making him captain wouldn't be a step forward, and we desperately need to go forward. Still, maybe a potential interim option while tryouts are held in the gym for replacements for the other half-dozen 'tards who have long outstayed their welcome, and never really had a use.

Then there's our illustrious vice captain. While Michael Clarke is first in line to the throne, surely, surely that cannot eventuate. Granted it's not enough for the reason to be "because he's Michael Clarke" (though you and I both know it totally is). No, his performance speaks for itself. He's out of form, he's Michael Clarke, he's injury prone, he's not leadership material and he's Michael Clarke. It would be akin to when Mr G made Toby, the kid with Down Syndrome, the star of the arena spectacular on Summer Heights High. You were horrified that they went there, it put you on edge waiting for it all to go wrong, you might have laughed uncomfortably, but you knew it was a mockery and it just wasn't right. Enough said.

Which brings us to Shane Watson. Firstly, he's not even 30. I was actually surprised to find that out, but there we go. So he's got a few years left in him, if he can leave his injuries at the door. Secondly, he's reasonably consistent. It's a sad day when we're picking our leaders from those who are 'reasonably consistent'. Sure, he doesn't seem overly bright but then, we all know he's capable of a hissy fit that would make Punter proud, and that seems to be an essential selection criteria. Though it's probably fair to say we'd use all our referrals up within the first over, with Watson in charge.

So there we have it. It's not so much about why it should be Watto as why it shouldn't be the others. Next question is, will Ponting have vanished into the ether by the end of today? Or will it be post Sydney?

Truth is, he should have left on a high, and handed over as he won the urn back in 2006. But no, like an out-of-touch politician he's clung to power in a seriously undignified fashion. I wonder if he regrets that now.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Boer

Once upon a test match dreary, while I fielded weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious sixes and half-volleyed fours,
While I fielded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of Pietersen gently rapping, the rapping from that cheating Boer.
`'Tis some nick,' I muttered, `the tapping of that cheating Boer -
This is truth, of this I’m sure.'

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the searing December,
And each Australian dying batsman wrought his ghost upon a four.
Eagerly I wished the wicket; - truly I had heard him nick-it
From my fielders look of submit - submit for my lost rapport -
For the rare and radiant skill whom the players named rapport-
Shameless here for evermore.

And the brazen sad uncertain gawking of each shocked fielder
Thrilled me - filled me with fantastic anger, lying dormant in days of yore;
So that now, to rampant beating of my heart, I stood repeating
`'Tis some nick on willow, from the cheating Boer! -
Some nick on willow, from the cheating Boer; -
The ball was hit, of this I’m sure'

Presently my anger grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
`Dar,' said I, `or Hill, truly you are deaf, I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently I heard a tapping,
And so faintly it came tapping, the tapping from that cheating Boer,
That I scarce was sure I heard it' - yet to see that winking Boer; -
Refer it, of this I’m sure.

Deep into the hotspot peering, long listening to the crowd jeering,
Waiting, dreaming victories no captain ever dared to dream before;
But the hotspot was unbroken, and the greyness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, `rapport!'
The team they whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, `rapport!'
Merely grey and nothing more.

Into the tribunal turning, all my anger within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before.
`Surely,' said I, `surely I was wrong, in my dissent; I lie
Let me see then, what threat is, losing captaincy I assure -
Let my heart be still a moment, two fifths fines and nothing more-
'Tis was nick, of this I’m sure!'

And the Boer, never walking, still is stalking, still is stalking
And the smug face of Pietersen; that bastard, cheating Boer;
And his eyes have all the daring of a team that be declaring,
And the sunlight o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my anger from out that shadow that lies dying on his fours
I shall be captain – nevermore.

By Ruth.

Lovingly ripped off from Poe.