Matt Renshaw has given a first-hand account of that time he had to retire hurt because of the wild shits

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Matt Renshaw had to retire hurt because he had the wild shits once. You may remember it because it was an instance of an international cricketer retiring hurt because he had the wild shits.

Renshaw spoke about the experience on The Final Word podcast this week. (The Final Word is run by Adam Collins and Geoff Lemon and, as they do it independently, it would be good if you could support them in some way. They have a Patreon thing where you can chip in a couple of quid. Doing that will allow them to (a) cover quirkier topics that would never be covered elsewhere, and (b) carry on doing it. Failing that, just have a listen every now and again because it’s always nice to have an audience.)

Reflecting on his experience, Renshaw said: “I let one rip out there in the middle and we were about 15 minutes away from lunch, or 20 minutes away from lunch. And then about five minutes later I’m standing there a bit more uncomfortable, sort of, ‘Is this another fart or is this something a bit more serious?’”

The following comment is the one that made us break out into an involuntary cold sweat. It’s a hard sensation to describe, but if you’ve ever suffered the wild shits (not the mild kind – the full-on shits; the kind that culminates in delirium and froth) then you know exactly what he means when he says, “And then it just started coming on very quickly.”

He doesn’t mean leakage. It’s just a sensation. You just… know.

What’s truly horrendous about Renshaw’s tale is the protracted nature of what followed – in particular the bit where he was about to run off to attend to matters when Steve Smith made him come back and speak to the umpires.

“He’s like, ‘what are you doing?’ I’m like, ‘mate, I need to go to the toilet’, and he’s like, ‘no, no, no, come back with me.'”

We know plenty’s been written about whether or not Smith is a wrong ‘un in recent times, but this, to us, is incontrovertible proof that he is.

Kudos to Renshaw though, who says he slightly regrets going off because shitting himself on the field would have been a better story, “and like there could have been a lot more sponsorship opportunities as well.”

A word too for Lemon’s timeless observation that with all the white kit, “it’s the worst possible sport to shit yourself in.”


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  1. In terms of worst sports for the really wild ones, there are some where you cavort around wearing ridiculously tight trunks. But cricket is pretty bad.

    Has Yer Maj considered a dose of Patreonage or similar oneself? Know this blog isn’t about the lucre but I do know a bit about the costs of running a site and I don’t think (m)any of your loyal subjects would think it was being outrageously cheeky.

    1. We just figure no-one would pay and it would be embarrassing. We’d have to work out some sort of ‘reward’ system too and that would involve finding a way to make a few things subscriber-only and that sounds like it would involve coding. We would need *a lot* of subscribers to cover the time it takes us to work out anything coding related.

      1. It would be great fun to have the opportunity to discover whether or not King Cricket Top Trumps is one of those sports activities that is especially embarrassing in the wild shits department.

        But I suppose repairing that game would require coding…

        …and anyway it probably wouldn’t be that embarrassing, what with KC Top Trumps being a game that is played on-line, solo in the privacy of one’s own mansion.


      2. Perhaps the favoured ones can just experience sub-1-year waiting times for their match reports to appear? I don’t think folk would be too fussy.

        As for repairing Top Trumps some time, WWDCD? (Probably not “be able to fix the code with a text editor, cup of coffee and fifteen minutes of time available” sadly.)

  2. I do think there are worse sports to spectacularly soil yourself in. Synchronised swimming would be grim. Very grim. The luge/skeleton would leave quite a trail too.

    A quick upvote for Geoff Lemon too. His recent book on the sandpaper farrago is exceptional – and very funny – and he’s just an all-round terrific journalist. A bit like Simon Hughes, but infinitely better in every way imaginable.

    1. Any sort of swimming really. As a rival, you really wouldn’t want that stuff in your facial environment.

  3. I wonder whether the pavilion stewards at Lord’s would let the player back in to the pavilion in the wild shits circumstances, given that he is neither wearing a jacket and tie nor (by that stage) properly attired in whites.

    “The nearest available toilets for you, Sir, are round that way behind the Mound Stand or the other way behind the Grandstand. We can’t make an exception in any circumstances, Sir.”

  4. “Former Australia captain Allan Border was highly critical of Renshaw, saying he hopes the opener is ‘lying on the table in there half dead. Otherwise as captain, I would not be happy’”

    Um when you gotta go, you gotta go. Regardless of what Border thinks. Actually I would like to know what Border was thinking here. Did he mean that Renshaw should have just pooped his pants and carried on batting?

    1. Should he have gone on the pair his baggy green with a pair of baggy browns?

    2. Border’s outrage and offence at a man choosing to not smear his strides is surely some sort of comment on the insanity of Australian hypermasculinity.

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