Tuesday, 16 July 2013

In Praise of Testing Times

So officially I've torn a calf muscle. A proper tennis player's injury, I'm told, so that makes me a proper tennis player.

This has meant being pretty much trussed up at home, hopping about between fridge and table using a mixture of beer and ibuprofen to dull the pain. Once the leg's better, I'll drop the ibuprofen.

My senses were by no means dulled enough to not excruciating the Japanese water torture of the first Ashes test match at Trent Bridge, mind you.

Midway through day 2 I was warming my heart on a torrid Australian batting after a collapse that wouldn't have looked out of place in an acceptance speech for Best Actress. Then out came Agar (wobbling like a jelly is Agar, I thought). He then proceeded to give us a series of impressions of cricket's greatest left-handers, ending with a Goweresque waft to midwicket.

Midway through day 3 I was chewing legs off kitchen chairs as I realised all our hopes resting on th slender shoulders and sawdust mind of one Ian Bell, a man who responds to pressure like a soap bubble. And yet here he was all touch and timing - one of the most elegant grinding-outs of an innings you will ever see and we were back in the ascendancy.

Our 12th man, Aleem Dar, could only help the cause after missing the biggest nick since Alcatraz. And suddenly there was no way England were going to lose. Midway through the morning of day 5 and here we all were jumping around with Jimmy as poor old Siddle to a blistering horizontal catch by Alistair Cook. That's Cook, the bloke with the Teflon fingers. Job done. Agar was already out, but that just meant that the latest Australian bunny had to be pulled out of the hutch or the hat.

The lad Pattinson then made another mockery of the batting order and looked more comfy than me Nan in a deckchair on Seaton Carew beach. They scraped and clawed - and when Finn was bowling positively scarpered - towards their ungettable target and if it wasn't for a timely lunch - during which the only food consumed by anyone I knew were fingernails - and not just my own - that would have been that.

Then Haddin, who batted so brilliantly, nicked it behind and, like a typical larrikin, refused to walk and we had to go upstairs to Erasmus. I understand the third umpire for the next Test will be Martin Luther - and he'll be a lot more clear-cut about the stumpings that this bloke.

Any road, turns out that Hot-Spot, Snicko, and hearing summat  all added up to Haddin's dismissal and England had squeezed home. Again.

Technology has come leaping to the fore again. It seems to throw up as many disputes as it solves. Me, I'm happy with it and as Aussie skipper Clarke says, he's just got to use it better. It would help, of course, if Sky had that technology to hand when it was needed - and if Mr Erasmus used it to make the right decision the great twot. Along with Cowan and Finn, I think he'll be lucky to see service at Lord's.

But anyone who thinks Test cricket is (a) dull and (b) dead could do worse than watch every second of this Test match back. Most of the dullest cricket matches I've seen in recent years have been tedious Twenty20's where the result is known long before the end has arrived. For a sport to maintain its fascination and tension for four and a half days is a testament to its form, its intrigue and the skill of its participants.

None more so than Jimmy Anderson. Here's a man whose mastery of his art has reached mesmeric proportions. And he's from Burnley! Were he a Pakistani quick with such magical ability, he would no doubt be fending off accusations of jiggery-pokery and sleight of hand that might perhaps be 'against the spirit of the game'.

Which brings us on to Stuart Broad and his refusal to walk. Aussies don't walk. They're told not to at a young age. This is sport. The officials make the decisions and you abide by them. Every so often you'll get a shit one to balance out the decision that went in your favour. It's unfortunate that human beings make these decisions but what can you do?

I'm with Broady. It's best not to help them out if you can help it. If that's not fair then just give him a charge of bringing the game into disrepute and we'll look again at whatever the hell the phrase 'Spirit of the Game' is supposed to mean.

Those that disapprove tend to be the chinless toffs who don't and never have relied on cricket as their main source of income. I mean there's no point in doing any of this chicanery if it's just a hobby you indulge in while you wait for pater to die so you can inherit half of Hampshire. Get over yourselves, chaps.

By the by, because I eschew pouring my hard-earned into the accounts of that wrinkled old Australian bollock Murdoch I've been enduring all this gut-wrenching tension via the medium of Test Match Special. It's the only time I allow transparent toffs to infect the air of the family home, be it Blofeld, his voice fruitier that a bumper crop from the Vale of Evesham, or Aggers jousting in a barely disguised class war with the hard-bitten oik that is Boycs.

Somehow it serves cricket just as well, if not better, than the tired old lunks on Sky. Only two days til the next one. Can't wait. My dear old thing.

97 comments:

  1. Good stuff Robbo, I didn't see any of the test but I was nervous just reading about the proceedings a day later!

    Thanks to Jacks on the FFL!

    ReplyDelete
  2. www.premierleague.com

    54229-16077

    54229-16078

    54229-16022

    54229-16028

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wahey,Vale of Evesham.

    My homeland.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Bob Wilson - Anchorman16 July 2013 at 12:58

    Another sterling effort Robbo.

    Just need to get yourself a decent proof reader!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bob - remember to include subjects in your sentences when being pedantic.

      Delete
    2. Arconada, Pfaff, Bats and Joseph-Antoine Bell16 July 2013 at 21:34

      Agree with your comment blogdignag.

      Delete
    3. Pedantic or prudish Bloggy? hahaha

      ah those old times....

      --BeeZee

      Delete
  5. When I was growing up (in the 90s) England would start every Ashes series by talking up their next great batting talent who was going to score 1000 runs and take down the Aussies.

    Inevitably England would get rock and rolled for 130 in their first innings, We would make 600 and the series would be over by lunch day 3. By the time the 5th test came around I would feel so bad for England I would actually want them to win the dead rubber.

    Watching Anderson, Swan and Cook celebrate like McGrath, Warne and Ponting in their pomp makes me wish the twats never win anything again in their lives.

    Is this why no one liked Aus when we won everything?

    Hopefully Anderson does a McGrath before the next test (steps on a ball, not becomes one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time).

    ReplyDelete
  6. Solid as always Robbo. Almost convinces me to watch more of the Ashes, though my work schedule and the time difference makes it difficult. And my attention span. Plus, I'm worried that if I watch more than the few hours I caught this time around, it will be the most boring Ashes ever. I might as well do you all a favor and continue to miss it so you can enjoy yourselves.

    And thanks, Jacks. I think I'll try a different strategy this year. Instead of starting strong and choking away all but one title by the end, I think I'll stick to being crap all season long.

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  7. Cracking blog Robbo. Broad was right not to walk - it's not up to him to make the decision. But, I think the ICC punished a West Indian bloke not so long ago for bringing the game into disrepute by not walking, so surely they have to hand out the same punishment? That lad Pattinson is a star - plenty of skill and aggression when bowling and a handy batsmen too (he used be an opening batsman a few years ago). But Jimmy Anderson is by far the number 1 bowler in the world, and has been for a few years now. Dale Steyn ain't far behind mind.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was Dinesh Ramdin Noel,Windies wicketkeeper.He was done for claiming a catch that obviously wasn't one.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tf9LLE-PiOY

      Fast forward to 2 mins.

      Delete
    2. Aaahh, thanks Jacks. Completely different situation to Broad, so I can't see him being punished at all.

      Delete
  8. i love cricket and wasted most summers as a kid watching it on bbc or playing it with a tennis ball in 30 a side matches on the rec. ive also occasionally played at a reasonable level but move house and my god! it's hard to the point of impossible to get into a cricket team as they're usually dominated by rich family dynasties and their chums.

    my boys blogdignag juniour 1,2 and 3 (not their real names) all play for the local club because if nothing else i dont want them growing up with the massive chip ive got on my shoulder, no lets face it smouldering hatred of the english middle classes aided and abetted by Sky Sports and their total stitch up english cultural and sporting capital, the bastards and now theyre doing it to football.

    beer and darts will be exclusive preserves next, you watch

    great test match though fantastic to ... listen to

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had trials,and played,Under 19s cricket for Worcestershire Blogs.I was the only non Grammar School boy at the trials.Oddly enough I didn't belong to any of the cliques at the 2 trials.Also I was the only one with a chin.

      Luckily for me *big head alert* I was too good not to be picked having played Birmingham League cricket since I was 15.

      Delete
    2. are you George Foreman Blog?

      Delete
  9. Sky Sports coverage is second to none.

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  10. I'm impressed jacks

    I could've played for Staffordshire like my dad.

    He could've played for Staffordshire n'all

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I once captained my school U15's against Staffordshire U15's. Usual captain was ill, and I was the eldest, so got the big C next to my name. We got an absolute hammering.

      Delete
    2. When I was 18 I could have played for the England Womans team -
      that's if I had been any good but as I am crap at all sports I wasn't chosen :)

      Delete
  11. Timely writings my dear Robbo. Almost had me sold that the English were an excellent test match outfit. While I enjoy the humour, I can't help but disagree, the poms did not deserve to win, coz they just about won. They should've fucked this Oz team up the arse within 3 or 4 days. The saffers seem to be the standard these days. Did they not rape the poms in their own back yard recently. They also beat the Oz at home. The Ashes is not cricket because Oz are SHIT!!! Cannot wait until ENG tour SA! Then we'll see what ENG are made of.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Never a great fan of 'rape' being used to describe a good victory, Mr Keegan. But your point re England is well made, and were it not for the perfectly legitimate stumping of Agar it might well have been horribly one-sided. Which is to take nowt away from the lad because he batted like seven shades of Sobers. But SA are better by a distance. Still, the Ashes is the Ashes is the Ashes and frankly the Saffers don't count at the mo - apart from the ones playing for us.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Point taken Robbo! But can u imagine a Saffers team with Trott & KP inclusive? Would be unstoppable, comparable maybe with the last generation Oz team! Any how, the Saffers aren't a dominant outfit but they get the job done. They're the most consistent team at the moment & deservedly no. 1

      Hope ENG can make a statement in the 2nd test! Innings defeat would do.

      Delete
  13. Always good to see the FFL back. Just about a month to go now for the real footy to start, not that I'm not enjoying the rubbish that currently passes of as football (also known as pre-season). Hopefully, A-HA can lay claim to another trophy this year.

    I'm a bit disappointed with the PL not having any real marquee signings to show so far. Cavani to PSG, Falcao to Monaco, Neymar to Barca. All we have to show so far are Paulinho and Fernandinho, not really what I would call marquee. Things may change though as City might land Jovetic soon.

    ReplyDelete
  14. sounds like a rather dysfunctional and perverse love triangle, can't understand how they all wear white. It's just not cricket.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Can't wait. My dear old thing.

    Lols. Awesome blog post as always!

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  16. Rooney looks sure to leave now. If utd are strips enough to keep him it will destabilise the team and hand the prem to Chelsea.

    If he goes to Chelsea, it will strengthen the chavs and hands the preen to Chelsea.

    SAF pulled the pin from this particular human hand grenade and now Moyes will have to throw himself on top of it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How would Chelsea use Rooney? Where would he play? We're sorted for attacking midfielders (though I suppose he could replace Oscar) and Torres/Ba/Lukaku at striker is more than enough. All he'll do is rotate through and sulk in blue instead of red.

      Delete
    2. There was a great comment on the Beeb website - headline reads "Rooney 'angry & confused' at Man Utd." Comment: "Rooney is 'angry and confused' when he looks at his shoelaces."

      Delete
  17. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/cricket/23318074

    311 in 40 overs? Is that cricket?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a fucked up scoreline!!!! Game was probably rigged. Team score was 513, stand corrected, in 40 overs. Someone made a stack at the bookies

      Delete
  18. Unless Moyes was trying to wind Rooney up and force his departure, he's fcked up on this. He's no SAF. Pale ginger imitation.

    ReplyDelete
  19. This whole situation is not being handled well at all. Rooney needs to publicly say I didn't ask to leave rather than drip feed stuff through "sources" (meaning Paul Stretford), MOyes needs to come out and say he is vital to the first team and really valued and the Sun and Mourinho just need to shut up.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I find all the manoeuvring quite interesting tbh. Rooney won't request a transfer because it will cost him a few million (guessing). The club has to keep his value -nothing is worth anything except in accordance with how it appears to be valued- so there's all kinds of word games and PR and media manipulation and wet have to guess what the true intentions of the protagonists are. Rooneys are Perry clear - he wants to go. Chelsea of course want to buy him, principally to destabilise their main competitors for the title, the owners want to boost the value of their brand, which may entail signalling that England's #1 striker its their own #2 but its all in the context now of oil billionaires, high finance, and globalised branding.

    A few I'll chosen words can cost a top club a lot more than their best player.

    And so Newcastle employ Joe kinnear. Quality.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Machiavelli as director of football ....Mourinho is el principe...he knows how to air the shit, that guy...secret of his success.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I've got an Audley Harrison Microwave you can have for nothing trot, trouble is it stops in 82 seconds 

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. that's perfect for my new fast food diet.

      Delete
  23. What the...

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23342660

    Perhaps acquiring Rooney would boost the brand in England, but I don't see how giving up your best player (Mata) or your future captain (Luiz) makes it worthwhile. The Special One is making an especially bad decision to unsettle those two. I was in favor of having him back, but this isn't what I hoped for. BHB, defend your beau!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well thankfully the Mata/Luiz for Rooney story is apparently as load of tosh but as much as I admire (not in a pervy way you understand) the Yummy One, I cannot understand his apparent obsession with trying to sign The Stroppy Over-rated One , as I said before would SO much rather Hernandez.

      The ONLY thing I can say in Rooneys favour is he is home-grown - though does being from Liverpool actually count .....

      Delete
    2. Apologies to any scouser for the above, it seemed funny at the time .

      The bad taste continues with this link


      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YU2m3xf99R4

      Delete
  24. Sir Nick Faldo17 July 2013 at 13:33

    Clearly, just as the granny shagger peaked as a player 3-4 years ago, so Moaninho peaked as a manager around the same time. If he thinks Mata is worth £10m less than Rooney, not the other way round, then he's a dick. The scum are just as stupid for rejecting it.

    ReplyDelete
  25. This blog was dedicated to cricket, and to the Glorious Eng cricket team! Damn disrespectful of you lot to be talking about footie!!!!! How would Robbo feel?? Twats!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I think what Moyes said was a compliment. He meant that in the absence of RVP that Wazza is his best all out attacking option, ie. ahead of little pea and wallbanger. This will allow them all to kiss and make up with a new extended contract. On the other hand, if they're offering Mata and Luiz, mancs should snatch their blue hands off.

    ReplyDelete
  27. They can have Suarez for Mata. C'mon Jose make the move.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Rooney is no consolation for missing out on Neymar. I'd rather Mourinho tried to develop Lukaku, working him in with (and eventually replacing) Torres and Ba. Lukaku may be the next Drogba. Rooney might as well be Torres. (Shell of former star player, hard-worker until he starts sulking.)

    And kudos to Cisse for standing up for his beliefs. If he feels that strongly, he ought to do something about it. I can see why Wonga wouldn't let him opt out (then everyone else might, too), but he has every right to choose. Players have left clubs for stupider reasons.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23347131

    ReplyDelete
  29. Trot..I justhappened to catch a post on the bbc by George foreman. No that's not me. I didn't know what you were talking abaht tbh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. he's got 7 lads all called George. I thought "Blogdignang Jnr" might have been an alias! Nevermind though, I'm not usually aware of what I'm talking about either.

      Delete
  30. And Robbo, I hope you have a speedy recovery and I'm sure we're all looking forward to an embellished version of the story. Were you putting Monfils to shame?

    ReplyDelete
  31. Seems the Mata/ Luiz +10M story was a crock (well, it IS silly season and they can't all write about the TDF) As a United fan, I'd snatch your hand off for a straight swap Mata for Rooney right now, but I'd rather sign Gerrard than the diving elbowy cheating little twat that is Luiz.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Could someone have Sepp Blatter killed? Please? I'll donate a tenner.

    ReplyDelete
  33. so the implausible story about chelsea offering the younger, more talented duo of either/or mata and luis as a make weight in the deal for rooney turns out to be a big fat childish cackhanded old trafford lie

    theyre missing saf already.

    im starting to get the sense that chelsea will walk away with it this year unless man u pull off a major megabuck deal for bale and/or ronaldo and at the moment i cant see that happening. new manager, transitional phase, cack-handed media relations, not the greatest squad, more money available at various billionaires' playgrounds - they might struggle to attract the top players. who knows tho - its like the phoney war at the moment and the glazers might get desperate.

    are man u the new liverpool? fingers crossed

    ReplyDelete
  34. Football gossip is much like a soap opera! Tiring, dreary & long-winded.

    Hope rooney signs for scunthorpe, higuain ends up at cardiff, ENG win the ashes, alonso wins f1 world championship, murray wins US Open & Els wins masters. Would top off a great 2013! Hopefully by May 2014 utd & liverpool would be relegated, sunderland are league champions, di canio poached by FC Basel who spectacularly end up winning the champions league..................if only.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sir Nick Faldo18 July 2013 at 12:49

      For Els to win the Masters would require the extremely late disqualification of the 12 players who finished ahead of him.

      Delete
    2. How could Alonso possible win the F1 championship, he is contracted to Madrid for one more year.

      Delete
  35. Replies
    1. Try teatree oil on it, trott

      Delete
    2. will that help me avoid relegation?

      Delete
  36. Should also say hope your leg on mend Robbo and Jacks, thank you for FFL

    ReplyDelete
  37. just heard from top source in England. Rooney is to join Chelsea subject only to his wife agreeing personal terms with JT.

    ReplyDelete
  38. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/soccer/news/20130718/italian-soccer-tank-atalanta.ap/?sct=hp_t2_a11&eref=sihp

    Not sure which is more surprising: Migliaccio's pitiful excuse, or that Balotelli wasn't involved.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Need more Fantasy Football? Try the Championship. Very basic. We ought to cobble together an overall championship across all the leagues we join. Robbo & Jacks classic, Robbo & Jacks H2H, this one, and perhaps even CL & EL. Devise an overall system (points for places, probably) and go from there.

    http://fantasy.football-league.co.uk/Home

    5804891

    (CL & EL aren't available yet. Any other leagues we should include?)

    ReplyDelete
  40. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/nfl/news/20130709/cleveland-browns-deceased-fan-pallbearers.ap/

    Flawless reasoning. Can't believe no one came up with this before.

    ReplyDelete
  41. so the implausible story about chelsea offering the younger, more talented duo of either/or mata and luis as a make weight in the deal for rooney turns out to be a big fat childish cackhanded old trafford lie

    ---------------------

    I would say more likely true and that Mourinho had to backtrack when it was declined

    everyone knows he wants rid of Luiz and he has too many attacking midfielders

    ReplyDelete
  42. Col u matched west ham 2ND XI on tues. Nice little cameo from Joe Cole, his career in microcosm ..quality..quality...quality...shite.

    watching them again tonight v spurs. Get 6000+ fans in that concrete shell of a stadium and its not half bad.

    Bale's last game for spurs?

    ReplyDelete
  43. Who's this over-excitable commentator on tms with tuffers?

    Nearly made me spill my beer

    ReplyDelete
  44. Detroit - Americas stoke-on-Trent

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  45. Oz 91 runs for haha 6 wickets

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  46. I'm watching the Frances de la Tour whilst keeping another tab open with the cricket score on.

    Australia being on the other side of the world doing things upside down.

    Send the tail in first then the batsmen come in at 91-6.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Jovetic, Negredo, Aguero and Dzeko ? Now thats some frontline. I'm not sure about Negredo being up there with the remaining 3 but even so, looking pretty dangerous. Almost as scary as Sturridge, Borini and Aspas.

    Also nice to see Benteke withdrawing his transfer request and staying on at Villa.

    ReplyDelete
  48. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/23376453

    Vilanova leaves Barca.

    Upon hearing of the job opening...
    Fergie works up the courage to ask the wife if she'd like to move to Barcelona.
    Michael Laudrup starts taking Catalan language lessons.
    Tony Pulis buys a catamaran. (He then decides it is too short and too quick, and trades it for a tugboat.)

    ReplyDelete
  49. Looking forward to fantasy footy.

    Btw, Russell Crowe. Is he?

    Hoping misery for Arse and Arse.

    What is it with gooners and arses?

    Blogdignagggggggggggggggggggg. The new Hunter S Thompson? Or, is dead HST the new blogdignag? WADR, Trots is pretty fucking funny as well. And, not forgetting the guy who wrote this blog. Mmmm, Robert R Robertson?

    Stephen. Agree with Robert. Rape jokes are only funny if they concern pedos in max security prisons. Even then, they're not particularly funny.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Stephen. I humbly apologise. Deeply.

    Shit, I was referring to Keegan's rape post.

    Everyone, please be aware of mistake in above post.

    ReplyDelete
  51. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-07-19/manus-island-detention-centre-to-be-expanded-under-rudd27s-asy/4830778

    If only the Australian Ashes touring parties still travelled back from England by boat.

    ReplyDelete
  52. If you think EPL has a silly season, chew on this...

    ---

    "At the end of last season, Queretaro were relegated to Ascenso MX. Their owner purchased Jaguares de Chiapas and moved them to Queretaro, arguably a better market, and adopted the old team's crest and nickname. San Luis then decided to pack up and move to Chiapas, becoming Chiapas F.C., also retaining the old team's nickname. La Piedad, who came up from the Ascenso, decided to move to Veracruz, marking the Red Sharks' return to the top flight for the first time since the 2007-08 season. Confused yet?

    Veracruz owner Fidel Kuri, who promised that he wouldn't move the club, isn't terribly popular in La Piedad. A new San Luis team has been founded in the Ascenso, but the citizens of La Piedad weren't so lucky. They no longer have a team in the top two divisions of Mexican football.

    New Jaguares don't look anything like Old San Luis after they turned over their entire roster. The turnover at new Queretaro/old Jaguares was a bit less ridiculous, but they did release or sell 10 players."

    http://www.fmfstateofmind.com/2013/7/19/4536792/liga-mx-2013-apertura-preview

    (see also http://espnfc.com/blog/_/name/thetoepoke/id/3179)

    ----

    But that's not the end of it. The way relegation works in Mexico, you get relegated (or into the relegation playoffs) based on the number of points you've had across multiple seasons. (I'm not an expert. Check Wikipedia for how many seasons.) The old Chiapas side that was moved to Queretaro was much higher in the relegation points battle over the past few seasons and has basically no chance of being relegated now.

    Still hard to wrap your head around it? Imagine that, upon relegation, QPR decided to dissolve the old club, buy Hull and move them to London, renaming them as QPR instead of investing in a promotion bid, and bringing along some choice players (while keeping some of the Hull players). Then Hull fans decide to buy Stoke, relocating them to Hull and renaming them as if Hull had never ceased to exist. A new team takes Stoke's place (as Stoke, I think). And then some other movement in the Championship and Premier League thrown in for good measure.

    Confused yet? I sure am...

    ReplyDelete
  53. What's that you say, Skippy? The real Australian cricket team are stuck down an abandoned mineshaft?
    Bisq

    ReplyDelete
  54. papiss cissé fined for refusing to wear shirt showing Newcastle club sponsor Wonga.

    Initial fine of £5,000, rising to £47,987,654,334 if he hasn't paid by Friday

    ReplyDelete
  55. so now we have AH and HA on the same page, should be a proper enlightening discussion.

    Come on Lee Westwood, we need another British win and another trophy in Florida. We'll forget about the Wars of the Roses for a week.

    A Tour de France/Open double? Could it be?

    ReplyDelete
  56. all we need now is Alan partridge

    ReplyDelete
  57. Go to London, I guarantee you'll either be mugged or not appreciated. Catch the train to London, stopping at Rejection, Disappointment, Backstabbing Central and Shattered Dreams Parkway

    ReplyDelete
  58. Yep, that sounds like London, bloggy.

    I don't think I've seen a test series where there have been so many umpiring mistakes made even when using replays and hot-spot. The top group of umpires available to the ICC are mainly English and Australian, so obviously can't be used in the Ashes series, but this series is highlighting how some of the remaining umpires clearly aren't good enough. I've no problem with an on-field umpire missing something close (although some of the no ball referrals have been shocking), but the bloke upstairs with all the technology who then still makes the mistake when it's not even marginal? No excuse. It's lucky that the Aussie's are so bad that it won't affect the outcome, but the errors are effecting both teams, so if this was a close series then they could be having a huge impact on the result.

    And well done Chris Froome.

    ReplyDelete
  59. What were the headlines in Australia Noel... Australia Rooted.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Well they don't seem too happy with Shane Watson using up all the reviews! They're pretty embarrassed, but are pretty fair about getting spanked by a better team. Some are even suggesting it's only fair after the years of dominance that they've had over the Brits. And it's Phil Hughes' head on the block this time, after Ed Cowan last test. They all want Katich back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought Katich and Clarke hated each other? And surely Mike Hussey would be a better bet if he hadn't retired (do he and Clarke get on? Does anyone like Michael Clarke?).


      Jedi

      Delete
    2. I don't think Katich and Watson like each other either. The public love Michael Clarke, and he's one of the best test captains in the world, so I don't think his position is going to be considered. So it's just a case of if they think of the short term and get someone like Katich or even Ponting back, or just accept a transition stage and go for a young upstart from the national competition.

      The same goes for who will replace James Pattinson now. Do they play safe and go for Mitchell Starc or Jackson Bird, or go for someone who may actually win them a game, like Pat Cummins or even Chadd Sayers?

      If they follow the England football team example, they'll play it safe, pick the old has beens, and lose this series and the next, and the next. Or they follow the German football team example, lose this one but be better prepared for the next one, and for the ones after that.

      Delete
  61. Replies
    1. Owen Coyle must be kickin' himself for takin' the Wigan job!

      Delete
  62. Frank Rikjaard back to Barca?

    ReplyDelete
  63. Martino to Barca, whoever he is.

    ReplyDelete