Roll up, roll up for our last ever Twitter round-up on Cricinfo

If there’s one thing we can say for our Twitter round-up column on Cricinfo, it’s that it clung on.

But no more. This week’s edition is the last.

Of all the cricket writing we’ve done, the Twitter round-up was the strangest. We can’t begin to explain the psychological impact of the trawling and sifting that was required to produce it. You’d also be surprised at just how long it took.

Then there was the readership. Normally when we do something that’s even relatively long-running, it builds a group of followers – people who check in each week. That never really seemed to happen. The majority of the few comments the column attracted were typically angry or quite obviously missing the point.

We honestly expected it to be binned ages ago, but it survived the death of Page 2 (Cricinfo’s satire section) and while we thought its days were numbered when it was made a fortnightly column, it turns out that happened all the way back in March 2013.

We honestly didn’t even know we’d been writing it that long.

The first issue actually appeared in April 2012 and it’s interesting to read it and contrast it with the latest.

We prefer the early format with subheadings, but it still suffers from the same problem we’ve always had in that the subject matter is fundamentally disjointed. In recent times, we’ve really tried to link the tweets together so that there’s some sort of thread running through them, but it’s tough-to-impossible. You’re totally at the mercy of what other people have said (and most of what’s said is either a retweet of an inspirational slogan, some none-too-subtle marketing, an unfunny in-joke with a friend, or a link to a photo on Instagram).

So unlike the much-loved Wisden Cricketer newsletter – which was reborn as Cricket Badger after it was cancelled due to something approaching popular demand – we’re not going to be reviving the Twitter round-up.

We will however pass on what we’ve learned, which is that Jimmy Neesham is pretty much the only cricketer worth following. Tino Best, Umar Akmal and Charles Dagnall have their very different moments. Also David Gower, when he can be bothered.

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41 Appeals

  1. The first comment by Brett 5 years ago seems very prescient.

  2. Like you, KC, I am in two minds about the Twitter Roundup in all its glory.

    But there are elements of it that I am missing already and which could sort-of be retained.

    I miss player references to eating at Nandos.

    I miss player references to jet lag.

    I miss the occasional (and indeed they were occasional) gem from a player, e.g. this week’s headline tweet: “Misbah was like a violinist in a crashing stock market.”

    Would it be possible to have an occasional (or indeed regular) item in badger along the lines of “cricket tweet spotted”, if it meets certain criteria. That would reduce the workload for you to a minimum, while retaining the very best of the tweet idea.

    • King Cricket

      April 15, 2017 at 11:12 am

      “This week’s tweet” is supposed to feature, but in all honesty it often demands the same amount of legwork to find that one tweet as it does to find 15.

      • That’s why I’m suggesting that you try to get your subjects and readers involved in the spotting.

        Ged Ladd doesn’t follow many players, but I suspect that some of your subjects/readers/followers are more Twitter active.

  3. SHIV!

    • I think it was more a case of him being given five… abject stupidity from the cidermen and it’ll have to be another late but ultimately futile title chase if anything.

  4. Sad about this. As you say, it was the one remaining bastion of pure humour on Cricinfo. And this week’s one got a whole four comments! Hopefully some of it well make it into the Badger, although I understand the amount of work that might require.

    • King Cricket

      April 16, 2017 at 11:04 am

      They do seem to be focusing on news, interviews and stat analysis at the minute. Hope the site doesn’t end up too dry.

      • I miss page 2 in general. are people really clicking more on the article that tells them how Jasprit Bumrah performs in the power play more than your twitter roundup?

      • I share your concerns about the humourlessness trend, not just on Cricinfo.

        One of the things that I have always loved about cricket as a sport is its comparative quirkiness and ability to see its own funny side.

        I hate to think of cricket taking itself too seriously.

        This site is an antidote to that, but I feel that there are fewer lighthearted places for cricket on the web now than there were a few years ago.

      • King Cricket

        April 16, 2017 at 8:16 pm

        Just check the number of shares on the average Bumrah Powerplay article and you’ll get a feel for what does and doesn’t get traffic.

      • King Cricket

        April 16, 2017 at 8:18 pm

        That said, even the Twitter round up got thousands of shares when they stuck it on Twitter and Facebook. When they didn’t, it died on its arse.

        So maybe that isn’t the best measure.

    • I miss it already.

      Can’t say I understand any of those comments, though.

      • Also, I miss handling the ball. There was one just last year. Perhaps it would have been just as entertaining if it had been called obstructing the field.

  5. I feel saddened to have discovered this regular collumn too late. I’ve spent the last day pouring through all the entries, in the style of a cheesy Hollywood Romantic Weepy about a lonely man who stumbles upon an intriguing profile on a dating website and slowly falls in love with their whimsical blog and amusing updates (shown in the film as amusing flashbacks) yet at the denouement of the film, when the romantic male lead decides to contact the lady they’ve fallen for, they discover that they’ve already died (possibly commiting suicide due to a lack of interest in their dating profile) and the film ends with some sad emo rock music.

    • King Cricket

      April 19, 2017 at 12:00 pm

      Gutted to have only just seen this comment and released it from the ‘pending’ queue.

      Cheers Lord Bosham.

  6. …and if Sam wants to know (for a friend) if anyone has ever won the county championship after losing their first two matches by an-innings-and…

    …I have phoned a friend for you who said, “I’m not sure, but I suspect not. However, in the pre-county championship leagues of the mid-nineteenth century, when gambling was the main purpose…”

    …apologies, Sam, I nodded off again and missed the last bit of his answer.

    • But hardly anyone used binary back in the mid-nineteenth century so they cannot have matched the Bears excellent middle order score of 00110.

  7. My favourite thing was generally the comments, someone would post an angry tirade against your offensive twitter article, then a comment would appear explaining this was satire. Always enjoyed that..

    • Yes, it’s brilliant when people just don’t get that gentle but sardonic wit. Mind you having an Edwardian jag, twitter to me is being woken up at 5am by territorial blackbirds doing their thing after I’ve had a heavy night on the claret and rebarbe:

      Rebarbe recipe:

      750g Roquefort cheese
      150g butter
      150g cream
      50 cl eau de vie/port/pastis/sweet sherry/whatever

      Put in a blender. Chill for 24 hours.

      I made it with prune eau de vie, halved the above measures, cut back on the cream, but doubled the liquor. The whole thing is terrifying. Take to cricket, take lots of crusty bread, drink with Speckled Hen, any ale. Share (unlikely). Have St. John Ambulance on hand.

  8. Balls, that didn’t work then.

  9. Sorry KC, I set out to write something poignant about the twitter round up but I’ll feel foolish in this forum and must confine myself to an attempt at something witty.

    Shame it’s gone. How are we going to know how moronic cricketers can be now?

    • King Cricket

      April 18, 2017 at 10:15 am

      This is no place for poignancy.

      Maybe from now on, we simply have to assume that somewhere in the world, there is always a cricketer… being moronic.

      • It’s the modern-day equivalent of the old philosophical conundrum of the tree falling in the woods. If a fat cricketer falls over and there is no-one there to see it, is it still funny?

        The bigger question no-one seems to have asked is, however, what are you going to do with all the time you would have spent muck-sifting?

      • King Cricket

        April 18, 2017 at 3:23 pm

        Our medium-term plan is to find some work.

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