Neil McKenzie: brave, stupid or mental

Neil McKenzie protects his neck from the sun - the wussNeil McKenzie did something. Tony Greig called him brave, Mark Nicholas branded him stupid. We’d like to add ‘mental’ to the equation as well.

Of course, Neil McKenzie is known to be a bit mental, but this was a different kind of mental. He took up a fielding position maybe two yards from the bat, almost directly in front, wearing no protection whatsoever.

Entirely predictably, Ricky Ponting drove the next ball straight into him. It was hard to gauge whether Ponting had middled it or not in the yard and a half that the ball travelled, but he definitely didn’t hold back. It was a full backlift, full follow-through kind of a drive.

In slow motion replays you can see McKenzie’s arm flesh doing a macabre disco dance at the point of impact. He grimaced as the shot was being played, but ensured he didn’t really make much of a fuss afterwards. You know why? It’s because he’s hard.

This kind of thing irritates us. We all know that it hurt like hell. We’ve all got nerves. We know how they work. Being hit by a hard driven cricket ball causes pain and pain hurts – that’s very much its defining feature.

McKenzie moved out of that fielding position immediately afterwards, so perhaps he’s not as brave, stupid or mental as he’d have us believe.

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4 Appeals

  1. “no protection whatsoever” – wot, not even a box, KC?

    Are you sure?

    How do you know for sure?

    But just the thought of it.

    You’ve got to hand it to him, the man has balls. Probably. Still.

  2. Still got nothing on Close… assuming those stories of “catch it, it’s bounced up off my head!” aren’t greatly exaggerated.

  3. King Cricket

    December 29, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    “How can a ball hurt you? It’s only on you for a second.”

    Impeccable logic from Brian Close…

  4. Balls hurt, Im sure all of us can attest to that.

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