A match report from Greece

Miriam et al. report from Greece where they witnessed the television coverage of England’s not-at-all fictional win over New Zealand first-hand.

If you are thinking of sending a match report, consider this confirmation that not only does the report not have to be timely, it also doesn’t particularly matter if you weren’t there.

Anyway. The report:

After moaning about how we couldn’t find cricket on the radio, we found a bar that would show cricket so long as it didn’t interfere with the football or rugby. On match morning, we rocked up at 11:23am local time, expecting a breakfast of beer and bar-snacks. To our surprise and delight, the bar served proper breakfasts.

We had omelette and chips. There were eight omelettes on the menu and the four of us each had a different omelette. The barman commented that next time we could perhaps order the other four omelettes on the menu. We weren’t sure whether he was making a joke, or whether he was annoyed that we had put them to the trouble of making four different omelettes.

During the match, we consumed the following between us: two filter coffees, one latté, five glasses of “fresh” orange juice (there was another, presumably non-fresh orange juice on the menu, but we didn’t risk it), and two glasses of sparkling water.

The bar TVs had pictures but no sound, so instead of insightful commentary we were treated to the kind of saxophone muzak that used to accompany pages from Ceefax (but this did resurrect happy memories of checking the cricket score as a child). This culminated, in the final nailbiting over, with the theme tune from Cagney and Lacey.

Because of the music, we had to guess at what each new batsman’s favourite shot was. The only one we could even begin to make out was Paul Collingwood’s nurdle off the pads. We also couldn’t hear any of Rob Key’s words of wisdom during the break, but we noted that he had chosen an all black outfit to wear. We hoped that this was for its slimming properties and not subtle support for the Kiwis.

That evening we went to a cocktail bar and recreated cricketing scenes using only the items that came in or with our cocktails – and we were strict about this. I therefore attach a picture of Kevin Pietersen’s run out in the South Africa match:

kp.jpg

You will be able to make out the crease (our drinks receipt), KP (piece of melon, cocktail sticks, a grape for his head), the stumps, his bat, and that’s Shaun Pollock (not a palm tree) to the left. The Shaun Pollock “hair” strands were much longer, but I bit each of them down to a more realistic length. This was horribly time-consuming but once I’d started there was no going back, and it’s important to maintain absolute accuracy in these things.

We had had quite a few cocktails by this point. From Katie, Katy, Carolyn, and Miriam.

This isn’t really relevant to the report. I also attach a picture of a Colossus (of Rhodes, not Scott Styris), also made from cocktail accoutrements:

colossus.JPG

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13 Appeals

  1. That. Is. Fucking. Fantastic.

    More recreations of cricketing moments using fruit and cocktail sticks please.

    Pretty please?

  2. I concur with the scientician…

    This is pure unadulterated genius, and Miriam deserves her place in the King Cricket hall of fame!

    If the standard of Miriam’s match reports continue in such vein, she should be revered as the demi-god, she obviously is.

    Huzzah.

  3. Seconded. The despairingly outstretched arm is a touch of pure brilliance. Who knew cocktail sticks had dramatic range?

  4. Okay, thirded then.

  5. Gosh, I am overwhelmed. I should really put the record straight, though, and say that this little tableau was in no way all my own work. It was one of the others (Katie?) who put KP together and who I agree has managed to convey great emotional depth. I was busy “cutting” Shaun Pollock’s hair at the time. I did choose the mountainous backdrop, to show that the match took place in Cape Town.

  6. I am in awe. Really.

    I am also quite embarrassed, having snorted orange squash over my keyboard whilst having a surreptitious wee browse at work. I have had to invent a sudden onset of a “bit of a cough” to cover with my boss.

    It was worth it though. Properly marvellous, that is.

  7. I’m giving up the match report business. I just can’t compete with that.

  8. As faultless as the match reporting is I was a little sad to discover the Colossus of Rhodes was the Colossus of Rhodes and not a wagonwheel of a Rob Key innings.

  9. “a grape for his head”

    Genius. Miriam et al, I doff my cap in your general direction.

    Well, I would, if I was wearing a cap. Which, obviously, I’m not, being in the office — sporting ones cap indoors is the behaviour of a bounder and a cad. And a chav, to boot.

  10. Jim Karna, like the best art the Colossus / Key wagonwheel is designed to have whatever meaning and resonance the viewer wishes to see.

    Look at all those red sixes hit straight down the ground. The pink is a reverse sweep and the green is that paddle shot over the fine leg boundary. The white is the Marilliner / shovel shot.

  11. The bat, lest you were wondering, is carefully constructed from another drinks receipt, wrapped around a pink plastic cocktail sword (that was originally skewering the grape), and tied in place with a strand of Sean Pollock’s hair.

    I’m delighted that our handiwork has been so well-received. We were proud of our efforts.

    Oh, and note the boat sailing into the harbour (i.e. between the ‘astride the ocean’ legs of the Colossus of Rhodes). Sticklers for accuracy, all of us.

  12. Noooooo Lemon Bella don’t stop match reporting! Bear in mind this post was the work of 4 minds and an awful lot of free time. You were certainly an inspiration to us – standing on the shoulders of giants, etc (hmm…that could work in cocktail ornaments). Anyway, more importantly, without your hard-hitting reportage, how will we know whether or not to bring a thermos to Kent?

  13. It’s a niche market, but I suppose someone has to keep you informed about the beverage situation at Canterbury – while the rest of you swan off to do all the glamourous assignments in foreign places where they have cocktail sticks.

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