King William Street

What do the Ashes mean to you? The wrapping up of the extremely one-sided Trent Bridge test has brought the majority of English fans out into raptures of delight. To see how the worm has turned, one only has to look at the headline of Tom Fordyce’s piece on BBC Sport. “Have the Ashes become to predictable?” he asks. Really? Very few predicted England would win this series, and now we’ve gone full circle. I was tempted to throw in a spurious Twelfth Night reference (as the only Billy play I’ve read, and that was out of educational necessity) but that would be pretentious. However, if this Ashes series is anyone’s idea of the food of love, then I would quite like the band to stop playing.

Oh dear. Am I being a frightful curmudgeon?

Who’s that Greek fella who rolls the bloody stone up hill? That one. I feel a bit like him. So let me please do this one more time just to make sure those who want to use my words against me, as some elegant escape narrative for the constant misrepresentation of my points. So, as the bullets were so effective in the last post, let’s play it again Sam, as Humphrey Bogart.did not say in the 1942 film Casablanca, directed by Michael Curtiz, and did you know Casablanca is not the capital of Morocco, and Rick Blaine is not the brother of David Blaine. Anyway, bullets (not rubber, as 10CC sang about in their 1973 single):
•    KP is not the illness, he is the symptom of the high-handed treatment the ECB showed towards those they need to build the sport;. The fans. Some of you were OK with it. I was not.
•    Outside Cricket is not just about Piers Morgan. Carry on believing that if you wish. This ia about a toffee-nosed, self-selecting elite telling the people who pay their wages that they are not to be concerned with the important things. Like THEIR national side.
•    I think Giles Clarke needs to be completely relieved of all duties for cricketing reasons. This is the clean break most needed in the sport in this country. He is, in my view, a malign, contemptuous, entitled charlatan, with about as much empathy as the desk fan I have next to me.
•    As certain ECB personnel leaked like my cistern, they are complicit in this episode. To suddenly forget this is not on. Absolutely not on. This may, or may not, be linked to the bullet point above.
•    The print media acquiesced and now, after 18 months, they believe the furore has passed. An Ashes win has been a pleasant surprise to them, and now they’ll milk it. And in some cases, settle scores.

TLG wrote a very good piece about his reactions to the Ashes. It was, as usual, excellently put together, brilliantly argued, and he can pay me a bit more if he wants any more nice words. As I said, I  can never want England to lose to Australia. That is not in my DNA. I walked down King William Street after the 5th Day in 2006. It was a walk of utter despair, total humiliation and a recognition that a week that started with decent expectations, and indeed with two excellent days to start the test, had gone downhill and then collapsed. It was pitiful. I’ve seen my team lose to a last minute goal at Wembley, a last minute goal in a play-off semi-final and an FA Cup Final, and I’ve never been gutted as I was that day. It was a day long torture session. English angst and passivity powerless in front of mental disintegration. It was a day we were stripped bare. So I’m not in this for the glory or the kudos, and I’ve seen the bad times, and paid a ton
of money to do it. Don’t attack my credentials. To be labelled, as we were in that wretched buffoon Ed Smith’s piece as akin to desperate students trying to garner support for a cod-Marxist rally, I say this. I’m fucking delighted to have been at your last test match, and seen your last test dismissal. The termination of your test career. As Arnie didn’t say “I won’t be back”. (I don’t like being this churlish, but stuff it. He goes on like he’s the world’s brightest light. Arrogant in the extreme).

I’ve seen one tweeter in particular, who Dave Tickner and Dan Brigham gave more house room to than he was entitled, keen to rub people’s noses in it. That an England fan thinks the upshot of the last 18 months is to gloat into other supporters’ faces is an acceptable conclusion, then well. I never meant to gloat in front of other fans unless they were being arses to me and people I give a damn about, and it wasn’t even gloating – it was despair. I would aim my points at the press, the ECB and their enablers, and yes, that included Alastair Cook. Try finding a bad word on this, or my previous blog, about Joe Root, Gary Ballance, Moeen Ali, Mark Wood, Steven Finn, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Adam Lyth, Sam Robson et al. You won’t, unless it’s about cricket performance. This “I’m a better supporter than you” bollocks is that. I have a view, and people read it, but I never claim to be a better supporter. People who oppose my views, and slag me off, are supporters. The difference is, I acknowledge that. They don’t. Oh – the tweeter concerned shares the same surname as the England captain. A nice coincidence.

There’s a long KP related piece in the works to give people the ammunition to call me an obsessive, but that will be released on an appropriate date. What I want to do in the remainder of this ramble is to just set out my feelings on the Ashes triumph.

Supreme indifference.

You want to know why? You know why if you’ve been reading this blog, and it has naff all to do with Kevin Pietersen. Just watch the last Giles Clarke interview in Death of a Gentleman about journalists and administration. Just read Maxie’s incredible piece on The Full Toss. Just read How Did We Lose In Adelaide. Just read @jamiecook1988 and his twitter chat with Tickers and Brigham. Just read Mike Selfey. Just read Paul Newman. Just read Stephen Brenkley. Just read FICJAM. Just attend a speaking engagement with Lovejoy. Just buy The Cricketer. Just read anything by either Alec Swann or The Analyst. Just read Derek Pringle. Watch Paul Allott on Cricket Writers on TV. 

The malcontents are treated as the enemy without, not even within – hence the name of this blog. Not once do those who criticise really try to understand why we are like we are – and I am being presumptuous on my clientele here, so do permit me to use “we”. They think we are that fickle that an Ashes win will bring us back into the fold. Fact is, we never left. We were just stuck in the naughty corner of the pen, and the only way to get in with the crowd is to come back with our tail between our legs. Admit we are wrong. Say we are sorry. Bow down to our masters. We are supplicants who need to know their place. WE WERE WRONG. ADMIT IT.

Ain’t gonna happen. I’ll be around for a while yet. So get used to it FICJAM and others. I ain’t going away. I remain, for now, firmly Outside Cricket.

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62 thoughts on “King William Street

  1. keyserchris Aug 10, 2015 / 11:14 pm

    Ah, that King William Street walk. I avoided it after Day 5, too many Australians had piled into the ground by than. Went out the back into the park above the Oval to avoid the smugness. It didn’t work…

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      • keyserchris Aug 10, 2015 / 11:25 pm

        Found a pub in North Adelaide that was quiet, then filled up later. Turned out it was booked for the SACA workers post-Test BBQ, where I met Les Burdett (groundsman) and “thanked” him for the wicket. He took a bite out of his chicken wing & replied “yeah…. it sure fucked you blows up the arse…”. That was the highlight of the (grimmest) day for me…

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  2. paulewart Aug 11, 2015 / 12:55 am

    Those ‘cod marxist’ rallies Smith dismisses so witheringly are rather popular right now. This reads as yet another example of the essayist’s complacency. History will not be kind to the likes of Smith and Clarke.
    I’m always reminded of the smug Fast Show character when FICJAM’s in full flow: ‘which was nice.’

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  3. paulewart Aug 11, 2015 / 5:04 am

    16.20 in.

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  4. Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 5:06 am

    I think I know the appropriate date. 🙂

    DVD watch: Old Trafford Day 1 tonight…

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  5. Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 5:23 am

    By the way:

    “Some people just want to impose their view. No room for manoeuvre. No respect for others’ opinion. It’s sad.”

    They still can’t be bothered getting it, no matter how many articulate pieces like this you write.

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  6. Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 6:37 am

    Look out for a fawning piece by Dominic Lawson in the Mail, as cited by Newman.

    Guess who it’s about?

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    • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 6:43 am

      Features the term “online mob of followers”. It’s about the contrast between two players, but you knew that already. Don’t play cliche bingo when you read it: you’ll need more than one card.

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      • paulewart Aug 11, 2015 / 7:48 am

        Yes, such a modest English family, particularly Nigel. So modest he gave his daughter the type of ridiculous name that would make an oligarch blush.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 8:00 am

        Dominic Lawson is scum personified.. I wondered when he would crawl out of his shit hole.
        And as usual on almost every topic he is either wrong or hypocriticcal. The funniest thing in his hatred of KP is revealing his hypocrisy to his constant defense of his beloved selfish economic free markets. KP wanted only the best, and wanted to earn a living from the IPL. This was Thatcherite individualism that hypocrite Lawson would normally be defending. If this was some selfish Tory toss pot business man Lawson would be defending him to the hilt.

        His hero Cook has not conquered the world. He has beaten the worst Aussie team in history. (Which Cook contributed almost nothing in runs scored.)

        They are all coming out of the woodwork now to do their little war dance and circle jerk. I am delighted that we got to them so completely. As FDR one said about the Lawson elites of the 1930s “I welcome their hate.” If scumbags like Lawson are inside cricket I will always be on the outside. I wouldn’t like the smell of hypocrisy that leaches out of his snake oil skin.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 8:48 am

        Yes Dmitri, English snobbery of the worst kind. Which Lawson specialises in. I don’t know whether he believes it or if he justs turns tricks to ingratiate himself into the establishment. If he isn’t already a member of the MCC I’m sure an invite will be in the post for writing such drivel.

        It is for me the worst aspect of the little Englander. A phony claim to love standards, decency, politeness, while all the time hiding an iron fist of intolerance and bitter venom. (You saw the fake politeness when they booed KP on finals day.) there was your fake niceness. As hollow as a rabbit warren.

        Lawson is a tub thumper for a dupicitous England. A fake England which demands pretend nicenes and politeness from the lower orders while forcing a strict class hierarchy. These people lament the passing of the British Empire. Funny how they lecture about honesty and integrity but support mass theft and slavery imposed on others. The Lawsons of the world would smile politely while sticking a knife in your back. Funny that sounds almost exactly the same character has the England captain. Hold a meeting and encourage players to be honest and then run off to the coach to tell tales.

        Arron did warn us about what an England win would mean. He was dead right. The vicious bitterness is now ozing out like puss out of a infected wound. As usual with a lot of British history we will now see it re written by the elite. The Oval is going to be a British version of the Nuremberg rally. Expect every establishment toe rag to be paraded like some tin pot dictator.

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      • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 9:11 am

        The litmus test for me was – who will get most credit in the immediate aftermath, and in what order: the patently obvious Compton-Miller medal winner-elect (Root); the four bowlers who sealed the two wins between them; the captain; the management team.

        And lo and behold it’s 3, 4, daylight, 2, 1 in that order. Of course it effing well is.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 10:18 am

        Earth to the Independent, Earth to the independent …….

        Cook averaged only 23.20 in the 3 ashes victories. He contributed nothing.

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      • SteveT Aug 11, 2015 / 12:50 pm

        Wish I hadn’t hit the link, I feel dirty having let the contents pass before my eyes. Must be a contender for a Dmitri Award. Right up there with Jim Holden

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        • LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2015 / 12:52 pm

          Been thinking about the Dmitri Awards. Not sure I’ll do ten this year as so many sacred cows named last year. Make it like Wisden in you can’t win one twice.

          A couple of shoo-ins at the moment.

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        • LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2015 / 1:16 pm

          Gold start for the inclusion of muppetry. As for the pieces. Well. I must have imagined all those critical journalists over KP. Wow. There were so many.

          For 18 months they begged us, ordered us, threatened us to move on. Now in Nirvana, they think of nothing but. And it was all so predictable.

          James on TFT in a good piece says “can’t we all get along”. In the words of Public Enemy “Hell No”.

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      • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 5:18 pm

        I told him, via Douglas Adams, that he’s trying to argue black is white. Revisionism doesn’t begin to cover what he’s doing.

        In response, he called me a “little Kevinista”.

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        • LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2015 / 6:09 pm

          James Morgan’s call for peace is resonating. Not going to happen.

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      • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 5:51 pm

        Quebecer’s reply to wctt should be framed and put on permanent exhibition in an art gallery somewhere.

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      • Zephirine Aug 11, 2015 / 6:54 pm

        Quebecer is, of course, right and that ‘Kevinista’ post gives away exactly what wctt is all about.

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  7. metatone Aug 11, 2015 / 8:16 am

    For me, the scheduling also needs to be understood. I feel like I’ve been living in “Ashes World” – we’ve had 3 series in 2 years, along with sundry ODI games. I’m bored of Australia, bored of their chippy cricket persona, bored of the hype, bored of two bald men fighting over a comb.

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    • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 9:17 am

      I’m sick of the one -sided home slaughters.

      In Tests since 2002:
      England in England W10 L3
      Australia in Australia W15 L4

      In ODIs since 2010:
      England in England W10 L4
      Australia in Australia W14 L2

      As Mark said recently. it’s become more like watching victims being thrown to the lions than a contest.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 10:00 am

        Bread and circuses Simon, Bread and circuses.

        It’s amazing how effective and profitable it is.

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    • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 10:01 am

      What the world needs now….. is more Steve James.

      Last piece I remember by him was how send-offs were the worst thing in cricket after Marlon Samuels’ salute. Followed by an extended Twitter-sob with Selvey about how their views were tragically misunderstood and it was all the fault of nasty headline writers for over-simplifying the subtle thinking of their writing. “Welcome to my world” was one of Selvey’s contributions.

      Anyway, from this latest piece:

      “That knowledge [of former players now in the media], with analysis often improving with detachment”.

      What “detachment”?

      “There might also be a line of thinking that by bringing these former players closer, that they will be less critical”.

      “Might”? “Also”?

      I’ll be interested to see if one significant thing they did differently as a result from these exchanges with former players ever emerges.

      (This reply was originally about ten times this length but was trimmed to avoid substantial enrichment of the LCL swearbox).

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    • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 10:15 am

      I must me mellowing this morning. I thought James piece was not that bad frankly. He praised Fletcher for his theory about bowlers over 85 mph, and the importance of lower order runs. He also pointed out it could be a giant soft soap to get ex players on side.

      It is the great ex players who have been more critical than the media in general. (All sky pudits said Cook should be sacked as ODI captain long before he was) As the written media is made up of moderate ex no hopers like Selvey, Hughes Smith, and Agnew they seem to long for a world that wasn’t there. A bit like their own careers perhaps?

      He also warned it wouldn’t last. This I think will be interesting. A lot of Cooky old scores are being settled but what happens if England start losing again? It will be a test of Willis, and Botham, and Nasser to keep their integrity. But the ECB knows how to play the access game, so I’m sure they are hoping for some good publicity.

      Samuels Salute has now gone into folk law and the general view seems to be he was not only funny but it gave Stokes a kick up the backside. Bob Willis even said as much on the verdict last week. I’m afraid Selvey, James were proved wrong again on that issue

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      • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 10:28 am

        Mark, I’d give James a little credit for not joining those dancing on the grave of 2005.

        However he did play under Fletcher when he was coach at Glamorgan and I think I’m right in saying he was ghost writer on Fletcher’s autobiography – so I suspect his defence of Fletcher is more part of the “too matey by half” culture rather than any genuine departure from the approved narrative.

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      • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 10:33 am

        Not saying I haven’t read worse, but I find the premise that *our* cricket media are objective and detached and not at all like *theirs* utterly risible. And all of the names he mentions work for the exclusive broadcaster of England cricket. As did Strauss himself until recently. The same broadcaster Dmitri calls ECB-TV; the one that fawned over Downton; the one that hasn’t mentioned Death Of A Gentleman at all; the one Giles Clarke thought worthy of a massive self-indulgent circle-jerk celebration (involving England players in person and all over Twitter) of its 200th Test last summer.

        There’s a telling moment (one of many) in DOAG, when Giles Clarke says that no-one will ever want to read or learn about cricket administration, and he then opines that all people care about is “the team”. Sky follow his dictum to the letter. What a coincidence.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 11:23 am

        Arron, the point about our media not being cheerleaders was, as you rightly say the big problem with the article. Many of the MSM think they are part of team England. Their reaction to the win has proved this.

        James is wrong about that. But I Thought the piece did offer some balance. Which the Telegraph has done better than any newspaper. Certainly more balanced than The Guardian. Which has become a sewer for ECB waste.

        And the Telegraph did dump Pringle………which was nice!

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      • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 12:55 pm

        SimonH

        Hope this doesn’t spoil your day:

        “Even Flower, who coached the team to three Ashes wins, a Test victory in India, the World No1 spot in all three formats, and the World T20, didn’t get close to winning the World Cup”

        Bull in the aptly-named Spin, of course.

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      • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 1:07 pm

        Yes, I’ve been chewing over a response to that one.

        How long were England No.1 in the various formats? I’ve been looking for a good source of historic rankings and although there’s a ton of info on individual players I can’t find one for teams.

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      • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 3:52 pm

        Found what I was looking for and posted a comment on The Spin.

        England’s ranking’s peaks lasted all of 12, 6 and 5 months respectively. Other countries must piss themselves laughing that English journalists still crow about things like that years later.

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      • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 4:27 pm

        Especially India, who as world ODI champions hammered England 5-0 less than a year before Flower’s glorious peak. England only reached the top because of the ODI series no-one wanted. And Selvey wrote in Sep 2012 that the one-day and T20 rankings were all but pointless anyway.

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  8. BoerInAustria Aug 11, 2015 / 10:36 am

    I need to get something of my chest.

    I will admit. I am not objective on this issue. As a born Saffer that is. (Lived half my life abroad and have 3 adopted countries – and aspects of their culture and language – as part of my identity). And, I actually find KP, as a person, quite cringe worthy at times.

    I have been fascinated by the KP / ECB affair as I see a number of interesting sub-plots to this story (management issues, view on authority, conflict resolution, office politics and inter-cultural competence) that all forms part of my boring daily existence.

    The exposure of the archaic nature of the ECB as an organization in the handling of this issue has been interesting and revealing.

    I was suprised (and appalled) how the military style Flower Power found resonance within the ECB “ranks”, and how the resulting archaic macho culture (“bullying”?) seem to mirror the business ethics of Giles Clarke and Co.

    The crisis of international cricket in general and English cricket in particular (often highlighted on these pages) is certainly not well served by these conservative, archaic and Victorian attitudes found imbedded in the ECB.

    It is against this background that statements of “right kind of family”, “outside”, and most recently “product of certain kind of education” and “an idea of England – and Englishness” grates as utterly class obsessed, nationalistic and chauvinist.

    The old cliché of “never met a nice South African” (appropriate at the time) still seem to give license for abuse of South Africans that will not be tolerated of any other minority. And the Pietersen Affair seems to be a conduit for a lot of closet xenophobes. Even BTL in the Guardian

    The ECB, and many pundits have shown their true colours over the last “18 months”, and it has not been pretty. Is this reflection of modern (English) society? What does it say about the game? What does that say about cricket supporters? What does that say about me?

    I love cricket, I love the drama, the contest, the subtlety, the skills. I see it as a game of respect, of integrity. I see it as a game that can unite people. I played a lot of it in back gardens, on beaches and streets. For me it is a peoples sport. A world sport.

    Some of the reasons I found these last months so utterly depressing.

    Thank you for this blog, and for everybody on here. I still live in hope…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 10:42 am

      Boer, have you read the “review of 2007” I posted on the DOAG thread? I did so as an insight into the thinking and persona of “early” Giles Clarke, and as a sledgehammer-subtle comparison between actions after the 06/07 and 13/14 whitewashes.

      However, towards the end there’s also a rather unedifying discussion on Kolpaks you might find, er, interesting.

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      • SimonH Aug 11, 2015 / 12:19 pm

        “A rather unedifying discussion on Kolpaks”

        I made the mistake of looking at a Guardian CC thread yesterday. I wanted to make a comment about Hampshire’s win over Warwickshire – but found the thread had been taken over by ‘what’s Fidel Edwards doing playing for Hampshire?’ types.

        Everyone with any sense knows there aren’t enough bowlers in the CC bowling at 85+ mph. Edwards can do that – and the CC is better for it.

        The atmosphere about Kolpaks reminds of the climate around in the 80s when the number of overseas’ players was reduced to one. The time when Hampshire were forced to dump a servant like Gordon Greenidge and books were appearing about overseas’ players with titles like ‘The Enemy Within’.

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      • BoerInAustria Aug 11, 2015 / 1:05 pm

        Thanks Arron

        F***ing disgrace.

        David Lloyd:
        “We have just signed a bloke called [Francois] du Plessis at Lancashire and, if you read the blurb, he is going to play in the second team. Why? Why have they signed him? Why not just scrap the academy? Countless players want to play in the side, so why does a 24-year-old want to sign for Lancashire? If he can’t play in South Africa and wants to learn the game, why does he not go and play in Pakistan? The simple answer is that he gets paid in England. … They give nothing, absolutely nothing. They are not great players, they have a burning ambition to earn money.”

        BBC on the signing “Not great players”:
        “The 23-year-old plays for Nashua Titans in South African domestic cricket and has a first-class average of 40.52.”
        http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/cricket/counties/lancashire/7119544.stm

        Peter Moores 2010 on Faf after him needing to leave: “give nothing, absolutely nothing”:
        “Lancashire coach Peter Moores also said the development was a “real disappointment”. “Not only is Faf a very talented cricketer, but during his two years at Lancashire was lauded by everyone in English cricket for his fielding brilliance. His positive energy and enthusiastic approach to the job at hand will be sorely missed and I speak on behalf of everyone in the dressing room when I thank Faf for his unwavering commitment and his contribution to the club and its supporters”
        http://en.espn.co.uk/cricket/sport/story/9581.html

        Conclussion from Bumble:South Africans = Mercenaries
        Unlike the ones that went on the Rebel Tours: Dilley later said: “… Chapter 4 of his aptly titled 1987 autobiography, Swings and Roundabouts, did carry the headline “Oh for Hindsight”, a rueful reflection on his decision to pull out of Graham Gooch’s South African Breweries-backed tour of 1981-82; it would have given Dilley “far greater financial security than I was to achieve staying within the legal framework of the game”.

        http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/535446.html

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    • Zephirine Aug 11, 2015 / 10:49 am

      Great post, Boer.

      There are interesting reflections to be made on the SA/Zim presence in English cricket and in particular the conflict between Flower and Pietersen as two expats struggling for influence over the host country.

      Sadly, I think the nastiness of the ECB and its supporters does reflect the present state of society in much of the UK. The unwarranted importance given to ‘businessmen’ and ‘entrepreneurs’; the zero-sum outlook that means there are no colleagues, only rivals; the domination of marketing and commercial imperatives… it’s a neo-liberal world, folks.

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      • man in a barrel Aug 11, 2015 / 6:23 pm

        Not sure I buy that, Zephirine. Surely the ECB are the least businesslike and entrepreneurial organisation you could think of. Look how they are opposed to getting cricket into the Olmpics, for example. look how they ignore the decline of cricket in this country and seem to do nothing to halt it. Look how they clamp down on anyone who presents a critical view or who attempts to circumvent the Sky paywall – even to the lengths ofgetting Test Match sofa closed down. If they are driven by marketing and commercial imperatives, the game would be growing rather than dying.

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      • Zephirine Aug 11, 2015 / 6:45 pm

        MiaB, that’s why I put quote marks – what I meant was the deference accorded to people with business experience, regardless of whether they’re any good or not. Look at Paul Downton, it was supposed to be his stellar career in the City which would make him a great administrator. Clarke throws his weight around because he owned Majestic Wines and Safestore. Probably neither of them would last long in a proper, large, well-run company.

        I think they are driven by marketing and commercial imperatives, but these are ill-judged and inappropriate.

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    • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 12:32 pm

      Boer, what is the feeling in South Africa to the carve up of world cricket? I haven’t seen anything in the English media about your situation. You are number 1 in the world, yet have been treated with contempt.

      It’s almost as if the the big 3 are saying good luck being number 1 because you won’t be playing us much.

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  9. Zephirine Aug 11, 2015 / 10:37 am

    http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/aug/10/paul-farbrace-england-aggressive-ashes-winning-tactics-accident

    This interview with Farbrace underlines the importance of that ‘Yes we can’ statement made by Root and Stokes at Lord’s against NZ. It really was a tectonic shift moment. Since then Cook has had the sense to realise that he can succeed by supporting and enabling these players rather than trying and failing to be some kind of solo ‘transformational leader’.

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  10. Ian Aug 11, 2015 / 11:03 am

    I just cannot understand people who think that we won the Ashes because KP was sacked and Cook backed as captain. Lets face it the Ashes have been won even with a couple of passengers in the team, I include the captain in that. It has been won because Australia cannot just play our bowlers. My girlfriend watches cricket and as she was only introduced to it by me a few years ago, watches with far more innocence than I can. She doesn’t get involved with reading press articles or blog posts. Anyway we were listening to the end on Saturday and the post match discussion. They were blowing smoke up Cook’s arse as you can expect. She remarked why is he getting so much credit. What has he done?.

    The other point I wanted to make was. I assume you all remember the Ed Smith article about people on social media magnifying criticism. That the average person would have read it and thought fair enough and agreed with it. Well I was talking to my Dad about Ed Smith, my Dad isn’t on twitter but he read the article and thought it was bollocks but doesn’t bother to tweet Ed and tell him. Ed isn’t clever enough to realise this and as an essayist you would think he might.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Arron Wright Aug 11, 2015 / 11:13 am

      Hello Ian – hope you’ve seen the last two pieces from Ed Smith, which we have posted on here over the last couple of days.

      He thinks people like you and your dad and girlfriend are part of a “mob”. Perhaps you could tell them that and see how they feel.

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      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 11:31 am

        Ed Smith has a lovely line in his Wikipedia entry….

        “He scored a century on his first class debut for Cambridge university cricket club in 1996, and graduated with a double first despite devoting much of his time to cricket.

        Jesus how arrogant can you get? A double first is pretty impressive, but the entry makes out like he was not even really trying. Too busy on the cricket field.

        Me thinks he is one of those too clever by half types who knows the cost of everything and the value of nothing.

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      • Zephirine Aug 11, 2015 / 12:00 pm

        A pedant writes: always be suspicious when someone claims a double first from Cambridge, especially in a subject like History. Strictly speaking you can only get a double in the final degree of subjects such as Maths and Classics where there are effectively two different subjects being studied. But some people claim a double first when they got a first in their 1st or 2nd year exams and then in their finals. It’s still a good achievement, of course, but, y’know…

        Like

      • alan Aug 11, 2015 / 12:05 pm

        I haven’t listened to a word of TMS this year for the first time ever. I simply cannot abide Smith. He may have a high IQ but, as all these articles you highlight amply demonstrate, he is actually pig ignorant. All he does is wrap his ignorance in a steaming mound of pretentious bullshit

        Like

      • Mark Aug 11, 2015 / 12:26 pm

        Zephirine, it’s not that he has achieved a first, as you say a good achievement, but the casual throw away line that it was achieved with little effort because he was playing cricket most of the time.

        But hey, what do I know? I’m just a cod Maxist off to my latest rally.

        Like

  11. Ian Aug 11, 2015 / 11:30 am

    I have read them unfortunately. GF thought it ludicrous that just because you disagree you are suddenly part of a mob. I am seeing my dad on Thursday so I am sure we will discuss Ed then, I hope he heard TMS last Thursday lunchtime.

    Interestingly my gf was against sacking KP but equally she was an advocate of TINA last year.

    Like

  12. thebogfather Aug 11, 2015 / 4:15 pm

    LCL awards? – The Lack of Wisdom all so slack five ricketeers of the year?

    Like

    • LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2015 / 4:20 pm

      You remember the Dmitris? Not all bad. Dobell, B-Mac, TFT……

      Like

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