Mop-up of the last few days – learning, ‘restaurants’ and Roach

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Sorry, we know content’s been a bit thin on the ground this week. Our nickname in one job was ‘Bare Minimum’ and we seem to have been harking back to those days.


Michael Clarke earlier this week: “We were hopeful that we learnt some lessons from our trip to India but it doesn’t look that way.”

Michael Clarke today: “I think we learnt a lot about the way we went about it in the UAE.”

To be continued…

Bangladesh v Zimbabwe

There’s always a suspicion that Bangladesh and Zimbabwe are Test nations in the same way that McDonald’s is a restaurant, but we’re always interested in the former’s progress or lack of.

Bangladesh won the first Test – a match even their coach, Dav Whatmore, said both teams seemed to be trying to lose. The second Test has seen a stronger performance. A big first innings total, a good lead, a declaration (just) and then skittleage. Our man Shakib Al Hasan hit 137, took 5-80 in Zimbabwe’s first innings and currently has 4-35 in the second.

Kemar Roach round-up

Technically, the piece we do for Cricinfo is supposed to involve other cricketers who are on Twitter, but Roach is just such a character.

The tweet below was supposed to appear in this week’s round-up but doesn’t seem to show up.

Obviously you could live without that, but we thought we’d present it here for you all to get an even better sense of the man.


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. I should introduce you to Bert “Bare Minimum Would Be An Improvement” Jr. You’d probably get on. Actually, scrap that. I don’t want him seeing that anyone can achieve success at anything with this attitude; he’d just use you as an example of why his shoelaces don’t need tying in such a way that they don’t come undone a few paces later. Stay away from my children, d’you hear.

    BTW, I followed the links back to February 2006 (stopping at October 2009 for a break) and I found that a comment by 888 had been “removed by a blog administrator”. Why? What did he / she have to say about Sakib Al Hasan that needed to be censored?

    1. Interesting use of ‘success’.

      As we’re sure you’re aware, 888 will almost certainly have said something irrelevant about ‘great odds’.

    2. Reading Bert’s comment quickly I wondered why on earth KC would have removed one of 668’s comments.

      The answer is, he didn’t!

      For those readers who don;t remember 668 Neighbour of the Beast around here – an example of a fine match report:

      My mistake is partly because, by 15:30 on a Friday after a week like this, I can barely read and certainly can’t do numbers any more.

      The mistake is also partly because I had a chance encounter with 668 in real life yesterday. A very pleasant surprise.

  2. Oh Kemar.

    “Stay In The Background Or You Will Become A Target!”

    Because that’s what you do, right? You’re Always In The Background. Such A Quiet, Underspoken Young Man.

    1. That works quite well, actually. “The Windies have encountered a problem and need to close. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause. Not £26.2m sorry, though.”

  3. I had a sort of mini crisis this week. With no posts forthcoming, I could find no productive use of my time. Luckily, this internetting thing is big and I stumbled onto a site that had pictures of vintage nudes. Top stuff. It was really wonderful to see models who weren’t half-starved. Also, almost every single one of those ladies was pretty natural, you know, with quite a bit of err, bush in the lawn. I mean at first it was difficult to make things out, but after a few hours, it becomes art.

    So, Michael Clarke said that, huh?

    1. How does one “stumble onto a site that has pictures of vintage nudes”? Multiple choice:

      a) by Googling the phrase “vintage cars” but getting distracted between the word “vintage” and the remainder of the Google phrase.

      b) by attempting to Google the phrase “vintage Port” after drinking a bottle of said stuff, in a vain attempt to track down another bottle.”

      c) by Googling for “classy nudes”, but typing “classic” instead.

      d) by clicking through the tacky-looking adverts for “Russian models”. (Has anyone yet attmepted this?

  4. Well, this is remarkable. Here’s an extract I chanced on that the King (of Blue & Brown fame) wrote on the 3rd of April, 2007 when following the trials and tribulations of a young “Sakib”-ul-Hasan:

    “In between much whinging about non-competitive matches in the World Cup and general Bangladeshi belittlement – although the team did little to counteract this – the Test Match Special commentators were momentarily taken aback by a shot played by Saqibul Hasan.

    It seems that our boy changes his grip and stance as the ball is being delivered and then spoons it backwards in a ‘chuck soil behind you’ manoevre.
    We told you the lad was an unparallelled genius. Now we’ve got some flimsy evidence to back that up. Pretty soon everyone will be doing the shovel.”

    So we should be calling it the Shak-scoop?

  5. I’ve watched quite a bit of Bangladesh vs. Zimbabwe over the last couple weeks, since the matches start right when I get home from work. Here are my observations:

    – Zimbabwe are not good.
    – Bangladesh are not good either, but Taijul Islam, Shakib, Mominul Haque, and Mushfiqur Rahim are decent enough.
    – Mominul is the guy I found myself watching most enthusiastically. Like, I would have it up on a stream on my computer while I watched basketball on TV, and when Mominul was batting, I would turn off the basketball.
    – Masakadza and Chakabva seemed to want me to reconsider my assessment of them, but I didn’t bother doing it. They’re both not very good.

    In summary, Bangladesh have a few decent players and Zimbabwe don’t, really. There’s a few guys (Masakadza, Chatara, etc.) who are good on their day, but their days are very rare. Also, Mominul Haque is the Bangladesh player to watch now that everyone knows Shakib is good.

  6. Are Pakistan allowed to call the UAE “a neutral venue” still? Because it certainly isn’t seeming like one.

    I know that the Kiwis don’t have the best attack in the world, especially with Southee and Boult neutralised, but come on! Hafeez getting 96 “away”? Surely not.

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