30 April 2011

The Meaning Of Life

Middlesex v Surrey [scorecard]
Highlights videos: [day 1] [day 2] [day 3]
Chris Adams discusses the lessons Surrey take from this match: [video]
Match reports from a visitor (Surrey Blog): [day 1] [day 2] [day 3]

Middlesex beat Surrey by an innings and 42 runs - is Neil Dexter the meaning of life?

John "Bart" Simpson, Toby Roland-Jones, Steven Finn and -present in the mind- "MOTM by default" Gareth Berg shall be knelt down before as well. A special bow shall be taken before Ollie Rayner, whose wait for wickets is obviously over! Super Ollie was also in the runs again and I dare say his patient knock of 35 was what eventually broke Surrey's neck. Keep going Ollie.

That's three wins out of three.


26 April 2011

Ollie Rayner Interview

One day before the mega clash with Surrey Super Ollie speaks about the time he has spent with Middlesex so far, looks back to his batting heroics with Gareth Berg, and has a thing or two to say about Surrey as well (hehe), don't miss this absolute gem of an interview!


25 April 2011

Blondes Have More Runs

Derbyshire v Middlesex
[scorecard] Highlights: [day 1] [day 2] [day 3] [day 4]

Worcestershire v Middlesex (CB 40)
[scorecard] Highlights: [day 1]

Pretty in pink. Tehehe.
Well actually, as well as first and foremost, they have more wickets, but that would have ruined the pun.

Gareth Berg, better known as the Marilyn of Middlesex, is currently in the early-season form of his life. Well no clue if this claim holds any water, he used to cause a similar hysteria on other occasions, but so far the Middle haven't played a single match in which he wasn't utmost instrumental.

After beating Essex in a thriller in the CC the nice one of the two London clubs have now also taken Derby to the cleaners, 4-18 for La Berg in the first innings followed by another two wickets in the second innings and a runout over which IOB nearly climaxed himself to death on the radio (all justified, mind!) and when Middle still had to chase 130 for the victory with just four wickets in hand he put on a 97-run partnership with Ollie Rayner aka Super Ollie, which ultimately laid the foundation for Middlesex' victory. Without this partnership Middlesex could have never come close to the target. In fact I was thinking the match had been lost already, call me a faithless tomato but I was completely underestimating the stubborn donkey that naturally dwells in every man's heart.... and the batting capabilities of The Reigner

The odd couple comprising of the Saffa bombshell and the German oak seems to cooperate well in general. In the CB 40 match against Worcestershire they took six of the wickets between them, Ollie got the two big fish at the top and opened the door for Ice to walk through the Worcs line-up reaping a career-best 4-24, the four remaining wickets fell to TRJ and Murtle (denying Berg the fiver yet again. Hnnngs!)


The Middle is up and running, topping the Championship table and starting their CB40 campaign with a win as well. Dex finally got some runs, Newman and Housego seem in somewhat helpful form, Chris Rogers is the corker everybody expected him to be, and generally there's no reason to complain, except my continuous whining about the omission of Ant Ireland. Finny is in great championship fettle, too. Keep it up, guys!

Onward, my Pink Power steeds! The (Hamilton-) brown nemesis is waiting!


22 April 2011

Is Easter About Sachin?

I've collected a handful of theologically significant evidence which proves that Sachin Tendulkar is the central Easter subject:

~ Feeding of the five thousand:
Jesus fed 5000 people with just five loaves of bread and two fish.
You will agree that while a ton is a bit more than that, Sachin feeds Billions with it!

~ Invitation to follow:
Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
Sachin said, "Who cares what I am! You are following me anyway :D"

~ Crucifixion:
Jesus got crucified for dubious reasons. Once.
Sachin gets crucified whenever he's played in a match his team lost.

~ The Cleansing of the Temple:
Jesus drove the merchants and moneychangers out of the Holy Temple.
Sachin... surely thinks bad of them, too.

~ DOB:
For centuries the clerics argued about Jesus' exact date of birth, and it looks like in Sachin's case the debate could be raging for years to come as well. Some scientists even claim he was "older than brown coal". All we know for sure is that he is very, very old.

~ Exorcism:
Jesus cast demons out of a man and allowed them to dwell in a herd of pigs.
Assuming that Sachin has similar powers, it would explain the existence of Ravi Ghastli.

More proof:
~ He has the heart of the lamb.
~ He is the newbie bowlers' bunny.
~ He hides his eggs in a box.
~ He has enormous ears. No wait a minute, his captain has enormous ears. But that's close enough.
~ Anyone who dares explain to Sachin's young believers that he doesn't actually exist will face a fate more cruel than death.

Ergo: Easter = Sachinfest. Q.E.D.

Happy Easter!


17 April 2011

A Cracking Start To The Season

What it takes to manhandle Essex | [scorecard]
Highlights: [day 1] [day 2] [day 3]

Batting: Sufficient starts by nearly everyone down to No. 10 (that's Steven Finn. He'd be a vital part in my lower batting order any day ^^).

Fielding: The lethal combination of the Mssrs. Finn, Murtagh, Collymore and Berg. A German mercenary in the slips. And the urgent wish to spend the pre-Easter-weekend with one's families instead of one's fellow players.

We all know it can only go down from here. The wickets will lose their funky freshness, the air will get drier, Middlesex still have no proper spin attack. But they will seek to keep making good use of the early season as long as the conditions aid their superior fast bowlers.

Finn looks his supernatural self already and should he get picked for the national side again the gap can be filled with Anthony Ireland or Toby Roland-Jones. Should he fail to make a soonish comeback to the English team he'll stay a selfpick at Middlesex, but I hope the Zim, who, according to Murtle's diary on the Middlesex HP, is the fittest Middle player in all thinkable disciplines, and who scared the living hell out of the Middle last year when he was running in for Gloucs, is going to make numerous appearances.

Ice Lord Gareth Berg deserves a special mention for his convincing allround performance. If there is any justice in this world he has grabbed the MOTM for this match. It is good to see him fully recovered from his back injury, I was a bit worried he could give up his bowling for good.


14 April 2011

Highest Honours

The following blogs and bloggers have earned mentions in this year's edition of the Wisden Almanack:

Congratulations to all these well-deserving mentionees,
and big thanks to Jrod, who let the cat out of the sack last night.

On a very humble side note... yours truly is mentioned, too
And I'm convinced that the major part of my gratitude goes to the Antichrist Jrod as well for that!
Thanks a lot, old chap.
You can acquire Jrod's prose in book-form here.

PS. Don't be evil.
 Raise your voice against the exclusion of the Associates from the World Cup 2015.


9 April 2011

The Linley Bandwagon Is Racing

Don't say I hadn't warned you. The Timster is a beast. With fangs and claws and books and stuff. Had a rather fabulous pre-season and I could hardly contain my consumed beverages when he was named in the starting XI for Surrey's first CC match of the season. Hopefully he can keep biting, he is currently my only umbilical cord to the brown arch nemesis and it would admittedly be a fairly sizeable pity if he got dropped again, alas, he's gonna be on the chopping block once Dernbach/Tremlett return to the lot. 

I feel sick, dirty and horribly ashamed for writing the first post of the county season about Surrey. For once you are allowed to abuse me; I'm not deserving any better for this colossal display of mental weakness.

Beware of the hoofed brown tricksters, they'll leave no stone unturned to sneak into your soul and take possession of your heart. And don't halloo till you're out of the wood; successfully deschofielding your mind is just the most minor of victories in an eternally raging battle against yourself. I'm not promoting complete abstinence here, that would be unhealthy, but don't allow yourself more than one soft Surrey spot at the same time.


8 April 2011

If You Are Wondering How AUS Won Against BAN XI


Look at the gallery of this match. Can you spot a single Bangladeshi player in these photos?

See. So if Australians are playing Australians... who do you think will win?

Need more proof?

Look at the BAN player names: Raqibul. Mahmudul. Mominul. Mahbulul. Such a line-up only exists in a funny person's mind.

Just saying.

PS. Don't be evil.


6 April 2011

Time To Raise Your Voice

The Borronator is enraged!
Okay go to this Cricket With Balls post, if you are short of time ignore the blabla and scroll down to the bottom of the post, then follow the instructions. The easiest thing to do is to sign the petition, I have signed it and you should do it, too; it doesn't take a lot of time, just enter your name and email address and there you go. You can also use the banner on your blog or website or even better make your own one, and guide your readers to this post. Make some noise!!! It is time to say
Also don't forget to follow Cricket Ireland on Twitter / Facebook, they'll keep you updated on all the action. Join the vast majority of cricket fans worldwide who want KOB, Stubby Stirling, The Slaar, Ten Inches and The Borronator to have a chance of participating in the next World Cup!


4 April 2011

ICC Confirms Elephant Wedding

So the next World Cup will be played only by the ten full members with no chance for any Associate to take part. Furthermore the group stage will be replaced by a round-robin system, with the four top ranked teams entering the semifinals.

Well done. What a cunning plan. The round robin format makes sure that all Test nations play each other *ka-ching*, and we won't get robbed of matches like Australia v England, of which we had not seen enough before the WC. On the other hand the elimination of the Associates spares us torment like the Ireland rubbish or the embarrassing displays by the Messrs Seelaar, Ten Inches, Borronator & Co.

Of course Ireland will benefit from an extended T20 World Cup, a tournament for which they had not managed to qualify before. Reducing their appearances to the T20 will also indirectly help them to get closer to a full membership, which they are undoubtedly fighting for with nail and tooth. 

The ICC's decision is not like breaking the legs of a child that has just started to walk properly, no. 

I cannot eat as much as I want to vomit.


EDIT: Trent Johnston tweetet:
"So that means our plans to become a full member have been a source of humour around that elitist table....."

That basically sums it up, there's nothing more to add to that.

Warren Deutrom, who I had featured earlier because he presented a brilliant case for Irish cricket on the Switch Hit podcast, has declared the 4th of April 2011 'an absolute black day for the sport'.

Here's the link to the Cricket With Balls post, in which Jrod names a few things you can do to protest against the decision. Also check out the respective comments, some useful suggestions for emails to the ICC have been posted there.

3 April 2011

MS Doughknee

Well I've said a few times that MS Dhoni is one of India's positive aspects, from my largely Australian standpoint. To my utter amazement many Indians, no matter what age or gender, would either collapse in shock, or feel the immediate urge to stick knives and forks into the soft parts of my body whenever I dared to mention this.

But his huge elephant ears, very similar to those of my grandfather, are a sign of smartness (on smart people that is), and this time they have flapped India to the World Cup title. Furthermore he is a quietly spoken guy, who has never appeared arrogant or offputting to me, unlike some of the other captains who have made an appearance during the World Cup.

And look how the public love him! Now I can lean back and feel my view confirmed. The Doughknee deserves all this appreciation, he's been a bloke who, whenever I could be bothered to pay attention,  copped plenty of stick for... dunno. Why actually? I'm happy for him. Enjoy your triumph, Mr. Knee. That's about all I was going to write about him. After all, he's still an Indian :P

Congratulations India, you were fantastic hosts and you deservedly won the trophy.

Thanks for reading this nothingpost. I have absolutely no clue about Indian cricket, to the point of being unable to identify Gautam Gambhir in a photo. But many other Indophile bloggers know what they're talking about:

Billy The Worm

...just to name a few!