Category Archives: blogs

Why cricket blogs matter

I am sure there are some who believe that Wisden putting a section devoted to blogging (although it was a small one this year when no bloggers faked their identity or death) is some sort of heresy.

“Women in the longroom, black people captaining the Windies and blogs in Wisden, it’s just not cricket.”

I think it’s necessary for cricket to have independent and unedited opinion, plus dick jokes.

Bloggers don’t often stumble across little unknown nuggets, but when they do, they’ll publish them.

The best example of this is happening right now.

This isn’t some fake IPL bullshit, this is the real deal.

The website is Wicbexpose.

It is essentially wikileaks just about the WICB.

On it you can find out that the Jamaican Cricket Association credit card was used for 700,000 on Burger King.

How Conde Riley declared he was resigning, but never actually resigned.

Ottis Gibson’s bullet points on why Chris Gayle is too stupid to captain.

And so many other little juicy tidbits that I am sure the WICB doesn’t want aired.

Before this I didn’t even know cricket administracrats are Burger King.

It’s brilliant blogging, and if I were to write a piece on blogs for next years Wisden, it would definitely get a mention even if it doesn’t post another post.

That’s what I love about blogs, that freedom to take the piss and say what you feel, if in this case you seem to be getting fed sensitive information daily, it makes it even more exciting.

The blogs I mentioned in Wisden this year were the old batsman, paddlesweep, bored cricket crazy indians, last of the summer whine, night watch girl, sacricketblog, the corridor, short of a length, the cricket watcher’s journal, cricket action art, ducking beamers, play for country not for self, thoughts from the dustbin, fantasy bob and if you can hack illegally through the times paywall there is cricket central.

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What’s wrong with Australia

There is a great blog that doesn’t get updated as much as it used to, but when I think of my favourite cricket writers I think of Stuart from History of Cricket.

Quite often when I’m on a podcast or doing test match sofa I’ll use a story and when I think about it I’ve heard it first on History of Cricket.

After the Ashes he wrote a piece on what is wrong with Australian cricket.

After the Ashes the last thing I wanted to do was read what someone else had written about a series and system I had just lived, plus I had a book to write.

The history of cricket tab remained open because I knew I would get to it eventually.

Last night I read it, and while it is far from a complete history of the recent Australian fuck ups (Stuart probably doesn’t have time for that), it is a thorough examination of what is wrong from every level of Australian cricket.

I don’t agree with all of it, but I agree with it more than I would with almost anything else and I don’t think you’ll get many better researched or clearer written pieces on how Australia went wrong. I don’t care who writes it.

My favourite section is on the fans:

It was amusing to read comments from current and former players, as well as support staff and Cricket Australia, criticizing the fans’ reaction to Australia’s poor performances. Evidently, the fans are meant to never voice their disapproval when things are going wrong. Instead, they are just meant to blindly support the national side, regardless of how they are going. While supporters should remain loyal to their side, it doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t recognise obvious problems. True supporters of Australian cricket need to make sure that they continue to loudly voice their disapproval of the current system that needs overhauling. Otherwise, no changes will be made, the slide down the rankings will continue, and Cricket Australia will ultimately face ever more problems in attracting the ‘fair weather fans’ away from the rival football codes.

Stuart covers the media, players, coaching, CA and selectors.  Unlike me he never gets angry or pissy, and never makes cheap jokes about Michael Beer getting picked from a bus station.

If you’re interested in Australian cricket, I’d suggest it is a must read.

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Out of the Ashes competition

I’m still getting entires to the competition, but it is over.

My ten DVDs haven been given away.

I am a giving man, so I’ll tell you about the King’s competition.

The sleeker sexier 2.0 King cricket is also giving away 10 copies of the DVD for those who follow these instructions:

  • 50 words on how you’d get any non-Test playing nation to the 2015 World Cup
  • Send your entry to
  • Last day for entry

So, if you still want a DVD, but had a shit cricket origin story, get over to king cricket and work it out.

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Out of the Ashes: Cricket Origin stories

In honour of Taj Malik, cricket and Out of the Ashes, here is a few cricket origin stories for you. These are the competition winners each of them owning a copy of Out of the Ashes on DVD.

Andrew Lunn:

I was first introduced to cricket by my Dad. He would sit there for hours watching cricket on the BBC and I never took much interest at first. In fact, at first, it bored the hell out of me and I could not understand his fascination. As soon as he stuck it on I would just go and kick a ball about in the garden.

Anyway because I could see how much it delighted him to watch cricket, my curiosity was aroused and I forced myself to sit there and watch it with him. At first maybe I was just enjoying it because he was enjoying it but slowly over time, maybe many months, I started to pick up on the vagaries and wonder of the sport. Discussions of short legs and silly mid off’s were the spark in my young mind to make me think there was a lot more to this sport than meets they eye. I just had to know more.

One of my earliest cricketing memories was staying up late to watch the Ashes down under with my Dad. It was about 11pm and the hype had been building all day, because England were almost in a strong position and Gooch was at the wicket. My Dad and I spent all day wondering if Gooch would take the Aussies apart. Anyway 12 o’ clock arrived and Craig McDermott with his war paint on came steaming in. He bowled a full toss! Go on Goochie, smack it for six! Instead he smacked it straight back to McDermott for a caught and bowled. Classic Moment! From that moment on and for the next ten or so years I got used to fearing the hell out of the Aussies. They were absolutely awesome but I didn’t care. In fact part of me almost revelled in their glory. What other sport can make the viewer admire the opposition in such a way.

Needless to say I have been hooked ever since. Cheers Dad!

The Alt Cricket Almanack:

Ravi Shastri introduced me to cricket. I met him when I was 10 years old. He told me: “If cricket is the earth, then I am your sun.”  Rameez Raja appeared from the shadows, brushed Shastri aside and said: “Yes son, and I am your moon.” They then both proceeded to explain to me the vagaries of cricket. I asked them about the LBW law, but they just said it was so complicated, that they’d been in the game for 20 years and even they didn’t understand.  So they called in Rudi Koertzen and Daryl Harper. They proceeded to argue that sometimes it was just ‘necessary’ to give a batsman out, even when the laws would advise otherwise. The conversation descended into an argument about racism, cheating, and ice cream. Towards the denouement, an elderly lady with a delightful northern accent interrupted proceedings. She brought out a tray, with a steaming pot of tea and home-made strawberry jam scones.  Everybody shut the fuck up, looked at each other, and proceeded to scoff. It’s irrelevant that Harper and Koertzen refused to share the same pot of tea as the other two. On that day, I experienced cricket’s extremist tokenism, made-up rules and awesome teas. I was sold.


Introduced by a teacher called Johnson

Who always took nets with his pads on

He coached a mean drive

But mainly took pride

In a craftily found single run

Abhishek Phadnis:

Javed chacha, our geriatric Hyderabadi manservant (and the only bowIer I ever hit for six. He was eighty-four at the time and the boundary was nineteen yards).  A devoted fan of food, Venkatapathy Raju (yes, parochialism is blind, tone-deaf and retarded) and Indian cricket, in that order, chacha declared Raju’s omission from the Indian team a CIA conspiracy and announced he’d fast until Raju was reinstated. He was discovered discreetly tucking into a kebab six minutes later.

Ben Tumilty:

My teacher introduced me when he found out I was a leftie, as he needed an ‘awkward’ bowler, which I presumed meant ‘shite’. I picked it up from there, yet my batting is probably more ‘awkward’ than my bowling nowadays… Yup, I’m still shite.

James Frost:

I was introduced to cricket by Steve Harmison. Before that 7-12, english cricket was just bad news in sports pages and a cursory glance at Middlesex results (inevitably more bad news). Since that spell of bowling I’ve been hooked – I just watched the entire Pakistan – NZ ODI series!

Gareth Davies:

Mike Lloyd when I was ten. In the cricketing hotbed of South West Wales. I was immediately introduced to the concepts of “joining the dots” and “pre-ssure, pre-ssure!” He’d coach the under-everythings 4 nights a week and play on Saturdays and Sundays. He’s still miles, miles better than me. LAAARVELY!!!


My dad introduced me to cricket during the 1996 cricket world cup. The cable television that my brother and I had for so long begged for suddenly became a reality and we were soon finding that supersport was a far better channel than the cartoon network. The rest is history…

Mitch Hume:

Mum was born with a spinal problem where two of her cervical vertebrae were fused together, meaning she was hospitalised and had very limited movement until the age of 10. She would often lie immobile in bed and pass the time by listening to cricket on the radio. Surgery partially rectified her mobility issues, but she maintained a love of cricket which I inherited at a very early age. Due to her back problems she could never throw overarm, but she keenly became my first fielding coach and would spend hours using freakish wrist dexterity to flick a ball underarm everywhere in our backyard for me to take those speccy catches every 8 year old kid loves to try.  As a result I became a reasonable wicketkeeper, but (possibly, most likely not) due to my coach’s inability to bowl, crap batsman. It mattered little – mum was always my number one fan, and could tell me exactly what happened after attending every game of junior cricket as a scorer, and a good deal of senior cricket too, often to my teenage embarrassment. She’s still turning up, and I’m 24, but now I appreciate it a lot more.

Eddie Hunter-Higgins:

My brother (nine years older than me) was the one who introduced me to cricket.He would thrash me everywhere goading me for poor fielding and leg side balls. When I occasionally got to bat he would bowl vicious bouncers at me and use a ball that was half burnt to swing more. But still I loved every minute of it trying to best him and now I am a complete cricket fanatic watching every minute of cricket that I can and follow it all over the world.

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A ODI recreated in blutack

Some of you may remember when the great AYALAC used to recreated matches with blutack, no, well here is his latest work via TWC.

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When Dirk writes, you read

Dirk Nannes has a blog.

Not some sissy over-edited ghost-written namby-pamby load of garbage that you wouldn’t make Delta Goodrem or Sourav Ganguly read, but a real blog type blog.

IOB style.

It’s on for fuck’s sake, it doesn’t get much bloggier than that.

He has already talked about Aaron Finch’s fat ass. You could say that Aaron Finch’s ass is Dirk’s perfect jeans.

I’ve always suspected that Dirk does more in a day than I do in a decade. So any words from him, ass related or otherwise, are valuable and should be read.

At the moment his about section says this:

“This is the Official Dirk Nannes Blog. Dirk Nannes is a left-arm fast bowler in the Australian Twenty20 cricket team, the Delhi Daredevils in the Indian Premier League and the Victorian Bushrangers.”

It’s nice, but it isn’t very Dirky.

I think he should go with this:

“The first time you see Dirk Nannes bowl is the first day of the rest of your life. Write down all the details so you don’t mess any of it up when you retell it to your grandkids. Dirk Nannes is fast bowling. He’s the monster in the closet of T20 batsmen, only coming out to scare and scar them. It isn’t a fair fight, and when it ends in blood and tears, the batsmen is taken away for a quick and anonymous burial. Dirk’s bowling action is far more masculine than any 80s action film. He plays for who he wants, when he wants, and when he isn’t doing that he’s saxaphoning on a ski slope, because he can. If he wasn’t a cricketer he’d still be cooler than you.”

Go check out his blog because, well, it’s dirty dirk nannes’ blog.


The Alternative Cricket Almanack

The Alternative Cricket Almanack 2011 is a collection of articles from 20 cricket writers on the net.

All proceeds from the book go to a scholarship for Afghan youth cricket. So that one day they will embarrass your country in a world cup.

The book itself veers in content from ‘Zombie Bradman’ to ‘Life in the Ladies’ Locker Room’, with the obligatory homage to Tendulkar in between. We also have our hotly anticipated Team of the Year, along with Diary of a Cricket Widow.

Buy the book here (UK, £6.75):
Buy the book here (USA, $11.70):

The proceeds from each book can buy six boxes for Afghan cricketers. That’s 12 pairs of testicles you’re offering safety, security and comfort to, for every book that you buy.

Sure, you could use your money on buying novelty t shirts or hardcore porn, but save some for this as well.


What can you do with Matty Hayden?

It seems like Matty Hayden is now selling theme park tickets to the kiwis.

Sportreview doesn’t like this, you can read all about why he doesn’t like it here, but the gist is, he thinks it is a bit shit and he’d like to take the piss.

So, his competition is to see what you can photoshop in behind Hayden to properly take the piss.

According to the rules, “Points will be awarded for 1. being funny and 2. making Hayden look like a twat.”

And then you can send in your work to richard (at) sportreview dot net dot nz and if he likes it he’ll put it on his website.

There is a prize, an equally shit DVD no one has ever heard of.

I want this DVD, so here is my entry.

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Test match Virtuosos

I’ve been a bit crook, so I couldn’t take in any of the information that was emailed to me by Vijay.

But the dude clearly has a lot of information about test batsmen.

It is all about the best batsmen ever.

If you like long intellectual arguments comparing Hutton to Lara then you might like this.

Or you might want to kill yourself afterwards.

I think it is worth the trip over there so you can read the first comment.



Ponting is Satan, you are Kate Winslet and I am in a film

Most of that is true.

One time CWB writer Andrew Fernando has started a blog.

His latest post is about him describing Satan to a little kid:

“Around two years ago, a kid that I looked after asked me what I thought Satan would look like if he took human form. I thought about it for a while and gave a somewhat descriptive answer. “He would be of average height,” I said, “maybe even a bit on the short side.” “He would be pretty hairy, have dark, devious, squinty eyes and a permanent dickhead-like expression that made you instantly dslike him.” “He would also definitely be Australian,” I added. My young companion concurred.”

Andrew has also managed one of best first blogs of any cricket blogger, in that he ignores cricket and talks about Kate Winslet.

So get over there and check him out.

More importantly than Andrew’s blog is the fact that my book has made its film debut.

Ahmer Naqvi has made a student film that is all about being locked in a room.  Compared to some student films I have seen – often made by me – this seems pretty handy.

You can see my book being read with boredom at the 1:44 mark, or in the animation with Shahid Afridi at 3:30.

The Room from ahmernaqvi on Vimeo.

Sure this is a lazy post, but I am working on the magazine, so shit happens.

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