Tag Archives: brett lee

Brett Lee’s tongue problem

If you want women, fame and money, it’s probably better to be a cricketer than a cricket administrator.

If you want job security, business cards and the ability to wield power over people who are better looking and more athletic than you, cricket administration is a good gig.

You might think being one of the fastest bowlers on earth with an album, Bollywood career and breakfast cereal sponsorship is enough give you some special treatment from your employers in the twilight of your impressive Australian career.

Instead Brett Lee has been charged with unbecoming behavior and detrimental public comments when speaking about a CEO of a state organization that is hemorrhaging Test players has been a non-entity in the ultimate domestic tournament and currently has the two last placed teams in the Big Bash.

It is just the latest in a long line of Cricket Australia stamping down on players and coaches saying what they feel. Simon Katich wasn’t allowed to talk about why he believed he was dropped. Darren Lehmann was charged by Cricket Australia for criticising the legality of a bowling action that the ICC has deemed illegal on occasions.

And now Lee is alleged to have breached Rule 6: Unbecoming Behaviour and Rule 9: Detrimental Public Comment of the Code of Behaviour regarding comments about Cricket New South Wales and its Chief Executive Officer Dave Gilbert.

“Rule 6 states: Without limiting any other rule, players and officials must not at any time engage in behaviour unbecoming to a representative player or official that could (a) bring them or the game of game into disrepute or (b) be harmful to the interests of cricket.

Rule 9 states: Without limiting any other rule, player and official must not make public or media comment which is detrimental to the interest of the game. “

Cricket Australia would save their staff a lot of time if they could convince their players to cut their tongues out like Kakihara did in Ichi the Killer. The problem is, Kakihara only slices off his own tongue when he was wrong.

Convincing Brett Lee he is wrong could be a tough thing to do.

Lee has said that the CEO of an underperforming state should be fired, and for Dave Gilbert that is detrimental. Ofcourse, Dave Gilbert had fired Anthony Stuart, which I suppose for Anthony Stuart was detrimental. And it was Gilbert who had hired Stuart, which was detrimental to Cricket New South Wales. Cricket New South Wales being an embarrassing mess who struggled to win games or keep their Test players could also be seen as detrimental.

The person who hired the wrong man and then fired him mid way through the season is ok, but the one guy has been fired, and the other has to defend his words.

Has Lee brought the game into disrepute, or has he merely pointed out that Dave Gilbert had already brought Cricket New South Wales disrepute? Lee just put a name to the bad practices that have produced bad results. Gilbert is a big boy, with a decent wage, and he can find a microphone to defend himself when he needs too.

And let us be honest, being that, and this is tough for a Victorian to say, New South Wales is the most important state for finding Australian players, the way CNSW have been performing over recent seasons is being directly detrimental to Australian cricket. And their CEO should be fined for that, no?

Ofcourse not, I’m being silly. Having a poor record is not detrimental, having someone pointing it out is.

There’s something properly wrong with CNSW at the moment. It shouldn’t be a crime to say so. Perhaps instead metaphorically cutting the tongues of anyone who says anything off the CA propaganda script, more time should be spent on ensure that cricket in New South Wales is returned to it’s former arrogant glory.

It’s a great job being a cricket player, but it’s probably less enjoyable doing it while constantly gagged.

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Brett Lee’s time in space is over

There is something about Brett Lee that people like.

It can’t be just that he is a nice guy, it was happening well before Freddie gave him a cuddle and even just being able to bowl really fast is not enough.

The man is simply loved by a huge number of cricket fans, and hated by surprisingly few.

Lee first arrived in cricket and almost immediately started in a space race with Shoaib Ahktar.  Who will break 100 miles and become the fastest bowler ever.

Lee was the American entry.  He had the team behind, was well prepared, looked like he was picked out of a catalogue and was earnest to the point of self-exhaustion.  Shoaib was definitely the Russian entry.  Madly disorganized, slightly insane, drenched in self-belief and despite all his problems he had the talent to get there.

No matter what madness either of these players has been through, public break ups, underwear label and Hindi song for Lee, and practically every other kind of public madness for Shoaib, people still stayed with them because they could bowl really bloody fast.

In 2003 in South Africa they went head to head on the speed guns.  Which is two places both men like to be.

Now it appears that both of their careers might just be fading away at the same time.

Lee pulling out before another series is surely the end of his international career.  Cricket Australia loves him, Ricky Ponting loves him and the Australian selectors love him, but there are now fit bowlers in form in Australian cricket.  Leaving Harris and Bollinger out of the World T20 for Lee was always going to be a risk, but his form in the IPL, especially compared to Bollinger’s form, should have made the selectors worried that they made a mistake.

Now his body has failed him, again.  I can’t see how he can ever come back.  Australia’s fast bowling stocks are probably the envy of International cricket; Victoria’s line up alone could represent a few International teams.

So perhaps once and for all the Buzz Aldrin of modern cricket will have to be let go.  The man loves representing his country, so he may never retire.  I think the selectors just need to say that the future is here and that they have no more time or money to spend on the space race.

Lee is well loved, has an IPL contract and will be fine. He just won’t be an international player again. Most of us live fine knowing we won’t play international cricket again (or for the first time).

In my vision of the future I see some clever devious TV executive would see Lee’s injury as a good thing and offer him and Shoaib a TV show.  They could travel the world training kids on fast bowling while digging at each other about speed gun read outs, which had the more potent Yorker, who hit more batsmen.  It would be a reality TV odd couple type show, but with cricket, travel, girls and guitars.  It practically writes itself.

They’d then make films, live performances and podcasts too.  Oh, and t-shirts.

The show would be called Beamers, Bouncers & Bollocks.

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Goodbye, Brett

If I was a fast bowler I’d like to think I’d be like Shaun Tait or Shoaib Ahktar, erratic, a little lazy, far from stable, and only good on certain days.

Brett Lee chose a different path. He chose to try really hard, be consistent and stay humble.

There are few other proper quick bowlers who could ever be called earnest in the way Brett can. The man was fast, neat, sweaty desperation.

I can’t say Lee was ever one of my favourite cricketers, I can’t say he was an all time great of the game, but I can say the boy put in.

He put in so much he ended up arguing with Ponting, bowling beamers and breaking his body.

Perhaps I wanted him to bowl different at times, perhaps I thought he had a great ride from the selectors, but I could never doubt his desperation.

You could see his body straining for extra effort, you could see it with his batting, you could see it occasionally with the scary neck veins he had.

It wouldn’t be fair to call him a great of the game, but he could certainly play.

Most of my favourite moments from his career are from the 05 Ashes. His bowling wasn’t quite good enough, but the guy would just keep trying. His batting was almost the difference at times. It was the fact his bowling wasn’t great that made him stand out more. England kept after him, and he wouldn’t sit down. When his bowling couldn’t give him happiness, he fought like a bastard dog with the bat.

Then there was that photo.

You have all seen it, him and Freddie.

To me that photo is Brett Lee. The man wanted to be the best for his country, but in the end had to settle with just being pretty good. Few photos could explain a sport better than that one does for cricket.

If Lee gave us nothing more than that photo, he gave us enough. And he did give us more.

Thanks for the sweat.

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Brett Lee is alive

True story.

He was found drenched in blood underneath a pile of 2784 news articles about the end of his career/life.

Other than some paper cuts, and a sore elbow from trying to fight his way out, he is ok. He may even be fit enough to bowl again just after Christmas, if he doesn’t die again before then.

Life has been tough for Lee under all these news items. At times he even had Dizzy Gillespie and Mark Taylor sitting on the pile.

Lee is resilient, and even though his elbow is not working, he realises that it can come good, and that he might not be finished with yet.

He was also lucky that he hadn’t read any of the articles on him (they were all facing up), as that would have scarred him for life.

But he has a pulse, still bowled faster Walt Flanagan’s dog in India, and is not at the age he needs to be put down.

If he was 33 and was bowling at Stuart Clark’s pace I’d agree, fuck, I’d get the shovel, but he is 33, in an injury phase, but no need to bury him yet.

There is no guarantee he will ever get picked again, but that doesn’t mean he has to call the cooper to give his measurements just yet.

Ofcourse even if Lee was dead that wouldn’t stop him trying.

He is that sort of dude.

If he were dead he would probably try harder. And his ghost would be forever moving the bowler’s marker at the SCG.

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Brett Lee is a double champion

You could say that NSWales won the latest Lalit soiree.

I say Brett Lee did.

That way I have to give NSWales no credit.

Well played, Brett.

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Gonna Be A Big Day

OK, so today might just be the day that decides the Ashes. It’s a bit unlikely with two matches still to go, but an England win would make it very hard for Australia to retain the urn, an Australian win pretty hard for England to win it back.

The whole boring ‘team’ thing aside, though, there are some fascinating individuals for whom today could be a Very Big Day indeed.

Shane Watson - I’m bored of writing about him now, but an early dismissal this morning and he’s going to have to do some good work with the ball to avoid the experiment of opening with him coming to an end after one Test. He’s scored runs, but he’s looked like an ODI opener trying to play the same way in the longer game. And his pie-chucking yesterday doesn’t inspire confidence as a bowler, either. Needs both runs and wickets today.

Michael Hussey – Almost had the same brainstorm yesterday evening that he had in the first innings. Must know that he is one more lapse of concentration away from losing his place.

Mitchell Johnson – Brett’s fit again. Need I say more?

Nathan Hauritz – Assuming the Aussies have to bowl again, can he turn it like Swanny was yesterday, or will he again look like a nervously excited schoolboy who’s been inexplicably invited to play with the grownups?

Stuart Broad – One good bowling spell does not make a summer. His 50 yesterday could not have been more timely, but he needs wickets and lots of them today, because his bowling so far in this series has been as short of Test class as my writing is of Gideon Haigh’s.

Graeme Swann - On a pitch turning square, he should by rights run through Australia. Of the 8 remaining wickets, 3 are left handers, one a debutant and one Ben Hospitalpass. Time for him to show that he’s as good as he thinks he is.

And yes, I could’ve mentioned Bell, Cook, Bopara and even Collingwood, but when England bat it is going to be a run chase and some of the England side are actually quite good at that sort of thing. In a slogathon, I don’t think you can judge anyone’s suitability as a Test batsman.

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Brett

The real reason Brett Lee broke down is pure earnest desperation.

Lee flew around the world trying to prove he was fit again.

He wouldn’t stay in Sydney and wait for the call; he had to make it happen.

That is how he is, and it isn’t the first time it has pushed him over the edge.

He has injured himself before trying to get more out of himself than was humanly possible, and the beamer incident from a few years back was a perfect example of someone mentally breaking it down because he couldn’t perform at the level he thought his country needed of him.

When Ponting questioned his commitment he responded by tearing out the spine of the English lions team. It was a brutal bowling performance. Few bowlers have a spell like that in them, and fewer ever produce one.

It was super human. And it is nor surprising that perhaps he left a piece of his rib out on that pitch.

Brett pushed himself so hard to be in the position he is right now. Physically & mentally.  With the departure of his wife he seemed even more committed to becoming the Brett Lee of only 18 months ago.

He wanted it too much, he tried too hard, and he is broken.

I like Brett Lee, I met him once, and he was so unnecessarily nice.

There have been many times I have questioned his place in the Australian team, but never have I questioned how much he wants to be there.

When Brett Lee tried, he put in everything he had, and then some more.

One look at his face and you could tell that few will ever try as hard as Brett Lee does.

Wanting to be in the ashes as bad as he did is probably the reason he won’t be in them.

“And all men kill the thing they love,
By all let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword!”

Oscar Wilde

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Possible ways Brett Lee injured his rib

Brett Lee is out of the first test.  This is how it happened.

“So the LORD Hilditch caused a deep sleep to fall upon the quickie and he slept; then He took one of his ribs and closed up the flesh at that place.   The LORD Hilditch fashioned into a spinner the rib which He had taken from the quickie, and brought the spinner to the man.   The quickie said,  “This is now bone of my bones,  And flesh of my flesh;  He shall be called Nathan Hauritz,  Because he was taken out of a real Man.”

OK that probably didn’t happen.

It is more likely is that Hauritz, Hilfenhaus or Clark struck Lee in his sleep.

Other sportsmen who have had this injury recently are Floyd Mayweather Jnr and Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys.

I can understand a boxer and a Quarterback tearing their rib cartilage, but a bowler?

Either Hauritz dropped a piano on him, Hilfenhaus threw bricks, or Stuart Clark hit him with school books.   Ok those also probably didn’t happen either.

Or was it this?

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Earnestness can kill you: the brett lee story

No one wants to play in the Ashes more than Brett Lee.

NO ONE.

All of his hairs (even the pubic ones) stand end on end at the very prospect of steaming in with a red nut glimmering in the sunlight at Cardiff. When his mind thinks of Freddie he conjures up visions of past battles won and lost, the friendship, the rivalry and the secret love affair. The thought of Geoffrey Boycott saying his name makes him hum with excitement.  He smiles uncontrollably when he anticipates the polite applause he will receive when trotting down to fine leg. He feels giddy when the Lord’s slope is mentioned. Thinking of taking guard for the first time gets him all warm and sticky.

But, that damned earnestness, the one that made him fly all round the world hoping Australia would declare him fit, has struck him again.

Now on the eve of the eve of the Ashes, Lee is injured.

A rib injury, which is biblical in almost every sense as Lee and the former Mrs Lee have now separated.

Lee is not merely trying too hard; he is trying so hard that every sinew in his body is pushed to the edge. Every orifice is wide open. Every gland is strained. His body is heaved to the limit of its performance by this earnest Ashes loving man.

Finally something had to give.

A rib, a humble protector of that loveable heart of his.

It has happened before, elite athletes pushing themselves so far they break down.

It happened to me before the second Matrix film.

I had geared myself up for it so much, that a few hours before the first showing I pulled an eye muscle.

But I soldiered on, I used the other eye, and I walked out of the theatre proud that I had watched the second matrix film with one eye down.

Lee is in a similar situation; he will play.

I cannot imagine a rib injury will stop this man.

If somehow he doesn’t play, that will mean certain death for Brett Lee.

All that furious earnest energy bubbling around his veins needs to come out, and I fear that if Brett doesn’t play, he may well just explode.

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Lee reverses his fortune (murdoch approved)

Brett Lee has had a shocking last twelve months.

Injury, love woes, form loss, losing his king of cricket pop title to AB DeVillers, and the Chris Gayle ruining his come back.

Today he stepped over the carcass of the last 12 months.

Coming on after Ponting threatened to spank him for not taking the game seriously enough, Lee earned a test spot and went back to his golden form.

Lee’s problem is this coma he hops into from time to time where he leaks runs, forgets about wickets and frustrates everyone who wants him around.

It was only a few weeks ago I had the Brett Lee debate,

“Which Lee will make his comeback in the Ashes, the miserly demon leader or the run leaking waste of space?

Should Australia punt on Lee, with his poor record in the UK, or is it time to let him reclaim his birth right of Bollywood’s favourite white cricketer.

Usually I am so sure, but with Lee, I have already back flipped so many times my back is gone. For once I shall leave it to the selectors and Ricky, so I expect Lee to be there for the first test.”

How many people would pick Hillfenhaus or Hauritz ahead of him now?

It seems that all that earnestness in Lee’s demeanour of late has been transported into pure fast bowling aggression, even if he did need a kick in the bum from Ricky.

The score was 0/172 when he came on, a short time later the score was 5/209, and Brett Lee and Ricky Ponting were best friends again.

It was probably Andrew Hilditch’s favourite warm up spell of all time.

Lee went from a probable to a definite, and the bowling quartet was completed without a phone call needing to be made.

Even though England has been way more impressive than Australia in their warm up game, Australia must feel like they have hugged a leprechaun with their two biggest form worries coming good in one match.

And it must be said, Lee looked magnificent; like someone had covered in him in butter and told him he was God.

Reverse swing was his weapon, but he had pace, was almost unhittable, and had the presence of a man in charge.

The rest of the attack had a nap.

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