Month: April 2011 (page 1 of 3)

Failure to repeat until funny

From the comments on our latest Cricinfo article:

“Ok, the sole joke of the article was silence, and quite frankly it needed at least a bit more to take it anywhere. Page 2 has definitely seen much better.”

It’s a dark day. We’re going to have to redouble our efforts.


Let Guru Fletcher make your decisions for you

Did you know that you can get a sense of what you should do in any given situation simply by gazing at inscrutable Guru Dunc standing motionless in his dark glasses and broad-brimmed hat?

It’s true. Check this out.

Should I have jerk chicken or takeaway pizza for tea tonight?

Feel the magic

Jerk chicken. Thanks Guru Dunc.


Some horror involving Alec Stewart

Alec Stewart horrifies

Explanation:

“Discretionary wealth managers JM Finn & Co have appointed legendary former England wicket keeper Alec Stewart as their brand ambassador.”

And another tiny piece of all of us dies.


Duncan Fletcher, India coach

Duncan Fletcher can bring a sour face to the roleSounds wrong, but we’re going to have to get used to it.

Some believe that Fletcher got this job because of the brilliant work he did with England (and yes, overall it was brilliant), but we suspect it was more that India wanted somebody jowelly and unfriendly on their staff and it just happened to be that they had an opening as head coach. If the kit washer had retired, they’d have simply recruited someone who fitted the description in that role instead.

This could lead to a cracking chapter in the next edition of Duncan Fletcher’s crappy book.


King Cricket wields a staggering degree of influence

We’ve an announcement to make.

Remember how we got unjustifiably worked up about the shape of the K in the middle of the new logo for The Cricketer? Well, we’ve just had word from their offices and it seems that they’ve been moved to carry out AN OFFICIAL REVIEW.

That’s right, King Cricket words CAN lead to action.

We have the power to make people carefully consider the shape of letters they use in the middle of words, provided lots of other people independently take issue with the exact same letter and also voice their displeasure.

What influence. This is how Martin Luther King must have felt.


Bilal Shafayat will be back

Bilal Shafayat's smashing beard and Bilal Shafayat just behind itMany of you will have read this week’s Spin in which Andy Bull describes Bilal Shafayat’s skittery descent to the Birmingham Leagues. Shafayat was one of our ones to watch in 2006 and 2007.

Stories like Shafayat’s sometimes seem like tragedies, but that’s only really when the player in question has really lost it. Shafayat sounds like he’s had little more than a wobble and there are worse places to be than the Birmingham Leagues. Mohammad Yousuf’s spending half his summer there this year and he’s hardly a failure.

Shafayat’s also 26. He’s got bags of time to get it together. More importantly, it-togetherness can be attained anywhere, it doesn’t have to be in county cricket. Having got it together, he’ll need to pass through county cricket, but it seems like he’s aiming higher than that anyway, so what’s the difference?

In and out of a county side, he’d be stuck in limbo. In this position, he’s poised to launch an assault. A cricketing assault. On the England team. From Birmingham.


Jos Buttler – pros and cons

Jos Buttler plays away from his body using the back of his bat

If you write for a proper newspaper, reporting on county cricket is largely about identifying the English player who did best on the day and then saying that he’s going to get a national call-up before too long.

Yesterday, we read a comment from Jos Buttler’s coach at Somerset, Andy Hurry, who said of the 20-year-old:

“He knows his game inside out, knows where he wants to hit boundaries. His one day game is nailed on.”

Buttler then hit 94 off 56 balls against Nottinghamshire. That would be evidence enough for some to say that he must be ‘knocking on the door’.

Here at King Cricket, we work differently. We grab Jos Buttler by the shoulder and say: “Woah there. Hold your horses. Step away from the door. You’ve pushed in here, mate. Don’t you understand queuing.”

Having led him back to the waiting room, we sit him down and point out the following issues that need addressing.

  1. His first name
  2. His surname

The first name will be the easiest to solve. ‘Jos’ is short for ‘Joseph’, but that spelling is confusing. If it rhymes with ‘dose’ then he’ll have to work something out. ‘Jose’ implies ‘José’ but ‘Jos’ is unacceptable, so he’s got to act. The easiest solution would be to just accept the obvious and become ‘Joe’ – now there’s a name you can set your watch by.

His surname though. Why does everyone love adding consonants to normal names these days? Think about former England bowling coaches Allan Donald and Ottis Gibson. What’s with these people?

There’s also the matter of him scoring eight and 10 against Lancashire and having a first-class average of 28, but he can address that easily enough once he’s sorted out the important stuff.


Nottinghamshire are feisty

Six wickets down in their second innings and Nottinghamshire still had fewer runs than Yorkshire. Steven Mullaney then made 83 and Chris Read 86. The latter was also the score which Yorkshire would then make for the loss of all ten wickets. Nottinghamshire won by 58 runs.

We met Steven Mullaney’s mum at Old Trafford a few years ago. She was very, very keen on talking about how Steven was a Lancashire player. We didn’t really have anything to say in reply, so it was one of those self-perpetuating awkward conversations where every silence is filled by the same topic.

It was like being the mute passenger in a car travelling down an incredibly long cul de sac. You’re hoping that you’ll come to a junction at some point, so that you can suggest turning off, but you know that opportunity will never present itself.


Lasith Malinga’s knee injury

Lasith Malinga punches himself in the back of the head

Lasith Malinga’s knee injury is just about bad enough that he can’t play Tests and just about good enough that he can play one-day internationals and the IPL.

Sri Lanka feel that this financially lucrative degree of pain could be sorted with some rehabilitative work back home and has therefore instructed him to leave the IPL.

We have a work-induced hand injury that means we’re just about capable of drinking tea but incapable of doing any actual work. We’re hoping we get sent home a bit later on.


What happened in Yorkshire?

Rich Pyrah, first-class bowling average of 48, goes for a run-a-ball against the champions but picks up a wicket every other over. This is one of those where the scorecard doesn’t really tell you the story.

Having read some match reports, they don’t particularly tell us the story either, so we’re going to make up our own. The story goes as follows.

Rich Pyrah couldn’t remember if he was left- or right-handed. Having bowled eight overs of abject filth left-handed, he remembered he was actually right-handed and switched over.

As he was now bowling from the other side of the wicket, the batsman had a slightly different view and it suddenly became apparent that there was a man who looked undead sitting behind the bowler’s arm. Five batsmen felt disconcerted by this and lost their wickets as a result of the distraction.


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