The two very obvious highlights from Pakistan v Australia in Abu Dhabi

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Marnus Labuschagne (via YouTube)

Pakistan are playing Australia at the minute and there is a scoreline and eventually there will be a result, but all that really matters is the catch and the run-out.

Let’s start with the run-out because that happened most recently.

Azhar Ali edged through gully and the ball ran towards the rope but not to the rope. Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq didn’t pick up on this subtlety and rather than running, they stood in the middle of the pitch doing a fist bump like a pair of unaware bell-ends.

The two men may have started to suspect that something was awry as they watched Tim Paine whip the bails off.

The catch happened earlier in the match. It was taken by Marnus Labuschagne, a human man whose first name is Marnus and whose second name is Labuschagne.

Labuschagne was fielding at short leg and Mohammad Hafeez middled the ball straight into what Cricinfo called his ‘inner thigh’, what Labuschagne himself called ‘sort of in my groin’ and what we’d call ‘his bollocks’ (we are 100 per cent confident he was wearing protective equipment because he was not hospitalised).

Labuschagne opted to fall over using a spiralling method, almost as if he were trying to corkscrew himself into the ground where he’d be safe. As he spun round, the ball ricocheted off his right thigh and rattled around between his legs before eventually coming to rest between his knees as he lay on his back.

“All of a sudden I saw it sit like a little diamond,” he recalled. (Who stores diamonds between their knees?)

It was a very fine catch.


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


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  1. Also worth mentioning that our man Marnus provided a nice segway between the two moments by being run out himself in a completely ridiculous way that seems quite tame now

  2. A couple of days ago I posited that Labuschagne sounds like a cheap Italian Champagne substitute and that “[n]othing can Marnus Labuschagne do, on or off the field, during or after his cricket career, to distance himself from the idea of a mediocre beverage.”

    He’s trying hard, isn’t he?

    But all I could think when I saw that video was, “good at flukey catches, granted, but still a mediocre fizzy beverage”.

  3. Any other candidates for most ridiculous run-out of all time?

    Harmison wanging the ball back at Inzi has got to be up there.

    1. Samit falling flat on his back was fun. Amir did a similar one to today when he thought he’d hit it for 6.

      Probably more common, but my absolute favourite run out is the one where they have to go to the third umpire to work out which batsman has been run out. I remember one on the last ODI tour to Pakistan, I think Hafeez might have been involved, where both batsmen were stretching for the crease at the wrong end.

  4. Another good thing is the way Cricinfo reports the action. It’s always “Bowler to Batsman”, and normally the surnames will do. But because both Marsh brothers are playing, they use their initials to distinguish them.

    In Mitchel’s case, this leads to him being called MR Marsh, which always reads to me like Australia have brought their teacher on to bowl.

    1. Marsh Major and Marsh Minor. On the subject of whom, how come they’ve reverted to bog standard now, after both contriving to fall due last winter?

  5. I find it odd how Tim Paine sprints around high fiving his team mates as though they’ve just delivered a crucial and impressive piece of fielding, and not just taken advantage of a dumb moment in a game the opposition will easily win anyway.

    You’d think he’d be a little more nonchalant. Perhaps Paine feels the need to celebrate every success he can get at this stage, or risk being accused of ‘not wanting it enough’ or equivalent bollocks.

  6. Ashes ballot success: expensive. £90 for Day 4 could be a very high £ to over ratio. Perhaps ticking the ‘willing to take more expensive tickets’ box was foolhardy, but I wasn’t 100% successful so maybe I should just be grateful.

    Also, the seats are very close to where they normally put the ‘proper’ beer bar, so that’s a big win.

    1. Ah shit, the Ashes ballot has happened. We forgot it was happening right after the World Cup.

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