Mop-up of the day – syllables, spin, short-pitched bowling and size

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First to Kandy, where the five minutes when it was both dry and bright enough to play cricket saw Sri Lanka set Australia 268 to win.

David Warner’s recently-discovered inability to make runs outside Australia persisted as he was bowled for one, and the tourists also lost Joe Burns and Usman Khawaja before Steve Smith whinged about how dark it was and they went off.

Burns was dismissed by what must surely qualify as ‘a ripper‘ from Lakshan Sandakan whose debut brings not just smashing wrist spin but also a great many initials. Paththamperuma Arachchige Don Lakshan Rangika Sandakan matches even Chaminda Vaas for number of names, but alas he must bow to the eternal master when it comes to syllables. Don’t mess with the big boys.

Speaking of which…

Marlon Samuels has been saying things. It’s always worth listening to Marlon, because he’s hilarious.

The West Indies lost the first Test against India by an innings and Marlon refuses to say that it’s because they have a young team.

“For me to say that is like finding excuses for the team. It’s a Test team, and Test cricket is big-man cricket, and the players should know that by now.”

Big-man cricket.

Neil Wagner took six wickets

New Zealand are currently 235-2 against Zimbabwe which we take as proof that it is not just difficult to take wickets on this pitch, but near-enough impossible.

Laughing uproariously in the face of near-enough impossibility, The Great Neil Wagner took 6-41.  Four of his wickets came off moderate-paced short balls.

Neil Wagner is the most effective moderate-paced short-pitched bowler in the world. This also makes him the most miraculous bowler in the world.

You need a miracle – you call for Neil Wagner.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. “Alright Mrs Sandakan, is your Paththamperuma Arachchige Don Lakshan Rangika playing today?”

      1. I’d very much like to see a Venn diagram wherein young PADLR Sandakan appears at the intersection of ‘Syllables’ and ‘Magic Balls’, only I’m too lazy to make one.

        Also, I just saw a Venn diagram with Chris Gayle at the intersection of ‘SEX’ and ‘SIX’ and permitted myself a LOL at such japery.

      2. I haven’t been the same ever since Depeche Mode Jayawardene retired but Paddler Sandakan is one of the best debuts in recent memory

  2. Indeed Paththamperuma Arachchige Don Lakshan Rangika Sandakan might be known as Paddlers or even Paddle-arse to take full advantage of his acronym potential.

    Don is a little disappointing in there with all those lengthy monikers, unless it was an homage to Bradders by Paddlers forebears – that would be cool.

    Who can? Sandakan.

    1. Off-topic, there is a Texan flavoured reply to you on last thread re Philadelphia jokes and WC Fields.

      1. With all due respect to the author of the piece that agonises over the city in question and whether the gag was originated in 1955, 1957 or 1959…

        …W C Fields, to whom the quote has long been attributed, died in 1946.

        I do realise that I’m letting facts get in the way again. It’s been that sort of month or two.

      2. A little bird with a pink hat informs me that “the fact that the first appearances of the ‘second prize is two weeks in …’ joke seem to appear after the death of Fields is convincing evidence that the attributions to Fields are posthumous and incorrect, perhaps confused with his other gags about Philadelphia. At any rate, those attributions would be more convincing if they had appeared in print before other appearances of the joke and in particular had predated his death.”

        A little bird with an orange hat informs me that “the fact that print appearances of the ‘second prize is two weeks in …’ joke seem to appear after the death of Fields if anything strengthens the case that Fields coined it, and the location of the city could have changed as other people retold it for their own purposes. A more fatal argument would have been that the joke demonstrably predates his birth, but there is no indication of that. ”

        Who to believe on the internet?

  3. The tag is just “Neil Wagner”.

    I feel like this tag is too short, is missing two syllables, and indeed lacks the requisite amount of spin as well.

    1. 154 balls without a run? These Aussies need to learn how to play positive cricket.

      1. I did wonder, when watching the most recent Pakistani fourth innings, whether they had any idea what they were trying to do – or perhaps they did know what they needed to do, but couldn’t be bothered to try. Personally I admire the Aussies for actually making an effort.

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