2015 Dmitris – Number Three – Death of a Gentleman (Kimber/Collins)

Jarrod-Kimber-Sam-Collins

In essence this is a really simple one. Probably the most important cricket film in our lifetimes, one that tried to at least have a stab at getting to the power-brokers and making other journalists sit up and listen to what some of us social media zealots had been banging on about since the Big Three carve up, and which slowly but surely is setting the narrative on what is happening in the world game today.

Jarrod and Sam, who both TLG and I can speak to freely, which is pretty nice of them, are every bit as deserving of the good journo award as George was last year. They are not your typical reporters. Jarrod, in particular, has always been one that has intrigued me. His is a bloggers style taken that extra mile that is beyond nearly all of us. His piece, for example, on the beaten England team at Sydney was a masterpiece, capturing the spirits of a defeated army better than the sniping, leak-driven, agenda-laden bog paper our media was serving up. He was also the journo responsible for the reading out of the Top 10 Worst Journalists poll to the press corps at the Sri Lanka tests. He gets the blogging mentality because he is one. He recognises the fandom we have, that that is a positive energy for the sport, not one to be derided, abused, ignored or treated with contempt. So while a Selvey will sneer, or a Bunkers go into a paroxsym of Cookie worship, Jarrod is sniping around the edges.

I was fortunate to be allowed to see Death of a Gentleman early. It was an interesting film, and probably Sam and Jarrod would admit that it isn’t perfect. But what it is is a reminder of how test cricket exists for no real logical reason now. Sure, the Ashes might sell, as might an India v Pakistan match-up, but little else matters. The all-consuming T20 expansion around the globe is seen as a threat, but the film argues it shouldn’t be. It highlights what test cricket meant to Ed Cowan, and that a number of other players see it that way too. But then it turned to the governance of the game, and the film got to its main point.

Sports bodies around the world are viewed with suspicion. I think the term is “a toxic brand”. Collins and Kimber bring that toxicity to the screen. Interviewing Clarke should come with a Hazardous Material warning, while Wally Edwards probably told them to foxtrot oscar. Srini avoided every question that might tie him down. While they might not have found the smoking gun, what they did find were rooms with a huge smell of discharged bullets. The biggest of them all was being left outside the meeting rooms, given short shrift by the security guards, and fed platitudes by the press officers.

While some of the key players, well, I mean Srini really, are not in the picture any more, the evidence Jarrod and Sam needed is coming out. Tim Wigmore is doing massively good work (keep that up and he’s in the running for next year) in highlighting the plight of the associates. Peter Miller and Andrew Nixon are two vociferous associate defenders. The game’s concentration, rather than widening is disheartening to all. While countries treat test matches like the last thing they want to play, there are loads of countries dying to give it a try. It’s a nonsense.

But let’s put it this way. They made Giles Clarke look even worse than we thought he was. That is a stupendous achievement. They have continued to fight the good fight, taking the film to Australia, holding a demonstration outside The Oval, continuing to keep the film in the public eye. The mainstream British media have done little to highlight the film since (with some notable exceptions) and certain senior journalists have not even cast their eye over it, or been major defenders of the ECB in their own lovely way.

So for the efforts to bring the dark arts of cricket administration under the scrutiny of the media, the cricketing public and anyone who might actually give a stuff how our sport is run, I am giving a Dmitri to Jarrod and Sam for their excellent Death of A Gentleman. Available on Amazon etc, and very recommended. My heartfelt thanks for all the work they have done.

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56 thoughts on “2015 Dmitris – Number Three – Death of a Gentleman (Kimber/Collins)

  1. SimonH Dec 18, 2015 / 12:44 pm

    Jonathan Wilson’s cricinfo review was magnificent:

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/903855.html

    Lawrence Booth got it (mostly):

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/article-3177286/Test-cricket-s-demise-greed-shoddy-governance-Death-Gentleman-film-concern-lovers-sport.html

    But then in comparison there was this:

    http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/jul/28/the-spin-death-of-a-gentleman-icc-ecb

    I’m sorry if I appear to have it in for Andy Bull but – did he watch a different film?

    Like

    • Arron Wright Dec 18, 2015 / 2:42 pm

      Stop carping you misty-eyed spouter of cobblers.

      🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. RufusSG Dec 18, 2015 / 1:33 pm

    Excellent choice. Probably the best, and most concerning, cricket film I’ve ever watched, and I can’t imagine the amount of dedication and stress Jarrod and Sam would have gone through to put it together and follow up the right leads to speak to the right people. I’m glad they did it, of course, since it’s important we understand the threat this sort of shoddy governance poses to so much of what we love about our great sport, so we can begin to do something about it.

    Which leads me onto something else – Tim Wigmore’s Cricinfo article “Growing poorer in the big three era” has mysteriously vanished from the website without explanation. Hm…

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/story/952665.html

    Like

    • d'Arthez Dec 18, 2015 / 1:52 pm

      Not sure why that would have happened. Anyone able to get in touch with Tim Wigmore? One of the snakes may have filed a suit, in which case it is understandable. In fact, if it is anything else, it is just another nail in the wall.

      Like

  3. jennyah46 Dec 18, 2015 / 3:24 pm

    First class Dmitri. Very well done.

    Like

  4. MM Dec 18, 2015 / 6:03 pm

    I loved that film and Ed Cowan’s my hero.

    Like

  5. May Dec 18, 2015 / 8:26 pm

    Appreciated the film and was also pleased I could attend the protest at the Oval. This article was first class. Thank you. Never give up and never be silenced.

    Like

  6. Jrod Dec 18, 2015 / 9:48 pm

    Thank you very much.

    I was trying to come up with something funny to write, but honestly, just thank you.

    Like

    • LordCanisLupus Dec 18, 2015 / 9:53 pm

      No problems, sir. Thanks for all you did this year. We’ll do our best to aid the momentum.

      Hope it makes sense. Out on the pop tonight!

      Like

  7. pktroll (@pktroll) Dec 20, 2015 / 8:40 am

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/952847.html

    Mark Nicholas now gets in on the act when discussing the death of test cricket. I can’t say I’m his greatest acolyte, however this particular article that focuses on the West Indies and their current utterly dreadful situation. The question poses whether or not that each of the nations that make up Windies should go their own separate way, a question that has been asked for some time.

    He then mentions that the “Big 3” are marginalising all other countries and that many others are starting to struggle. The chickens are really coming home to roost. Thanks, Jarrod and Sam, people have taken notice and are starting to at ever wider levels.

    Like

    • d'Arthez Dec 20, 2015 / 9:49 am

      One problem is of course that if the West Indies territories go their separate ways, why would they be entitled to Full Member status? Does anyone really think that Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica, Guyana and Barbados would get that? Does anyone really think that a board like Pakistan can pay for that kind of dilution of funds, especially since they can’t get a series with India over security concerns, and thus are in a financially more precarious position?

      Does anyone really think cricket in the West Indies can survive if these teams cannot even get a realistic shot at competing in the World Cup(s)? It will eventually undermine the commercial basis for the CPL too: you get to see people play a game, in which your own country has a snowball’s chance in hell of even participating at a global stage. Might as well morph into a baseball related event series, for up and coming baseball talent.

      Like

  8. SimonH Dec 20, 2015 / 12:21 pm

    76 (42). Off a six-man attack all with ODI experience. Highest SR (181) of anyone in the match who got into double figures.

    Meanwhile, the BCCI scrape the bottom of the barrel with excuses:

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/india/content/story/953445.html

    This one’s not as funny as the we-dont-understand-how-email-works-gambit they tried before. Wasn’t this the issue that a recent report stated depended on Giles Clarke’s diplomatic skills for a resolution? Who’d have thought that wouldn’t turn out well…..

    Like

    • Grenville Dec 20, 2015 / 4:04 pm

      Yes but he was out to an irresponsible shot in the penultimate over. The show pony, trying to score a six with his team still behind the rate. They lost and that was probably because he’s such a prick and not a team man (he’s had to leave every team he’s ever played in because he fell out with the dressing room. Oh, except for Natal, Notts, Hampshire and Surrey and everyone except Flower, Cook and Prior with his adopted country). Really he’s just a disruptive influence. Khawaja scored a century and picking him for the world T20 would be a retrograde step. We need to be looking to the future and building for the next world cup (after this one). Also, he doesn’t rate James Taylor.

      Like

  9. Arron Wright Dec 21, 2015 / 8:46 am

    *SPOILER ALERT*

    Never been wrong before…

    Like

    • Rooto Dec 21, 2015 / 11:15 am

      Extra brownie (nose) points after Vic Marks had said they’d do well to draw.

      Like

  10. SimonH Dec 21, 2015 / 5:58 pm

    The Analyst (in another desperate attempt to flog his book) is counting down the ten greatest batsmen of the last forty years.

    Brian Lara is his No.8.

    Because there have been seven better batsmen than Lara in the last four decades, right?

    Like

    • LordCanisLupus Dec 21, 2015 / 7:15 pm

      Alec Swann in the Cricketer says Graves’s comments on KP were a “throwaway line “. Sure mate.

      Like

      • Mark Dec 21, 2015 / 7:36 pm

        You could make an argument that KPs texts to his South African mates were throw away lines too. Like Strauss and his C… throw away line.

        Funny how only one side is allowed throw away lines, and the other side isn’t even allowed to look out of the window. ECB/Media double standards.

        Like

      • Mark Dec 21, 2015 / 10:27 pm

        “The ECB cricketer is a belter this month.”

        Sounds like one to miss. As usual they slyly use KP in a stealth way to make their content seem more interesting than it is. They can’t leave him alone. Almost obsessive you might say.

        Like

    • LordCanisLupus Dec 21, 2015 / 7:18 pm

      Oh. Last 40 years. The two Richards, viv and Barry. Sachin. You could argue those. Anyone else?

      Like

      • northernlight71 Dec 21, 2015 / 10:04 pm

        Oh God. Oh my lord. He isn’t . . . . he really isn’t going to put Saint Alastair anywhere near the top of that list is he?
        IS HE?

        Like

      • SimonH Dec 21, 2015 / 10:50 pm

        Viv, yes. Sanga, arguable.

        Anyone else, no.

        Like

      • dlpthomas Dec 22, 2015 / 2:00 am

        Pollock? He played against the rebel Australian side in the late 1980’s so he qualifies time-wise. And he was quite good.

        Like

      • BoredInAustria Dec 23, 2015 / 9:39 am

        Ahhh Pollock. Unfortunately the only one mentioned I have actually seen playing. Used to send shivers down my spine when he got a standing ovation at the Wanderers walking IN to bat….

        Like

    • d'Arthez Dec 23, 2015 / 2:56 am

      http://goo.gl/pO2UbX

      has the list of all the batsmen who qualify on the minimum of 15000 international runs in cricket. That means de Silva, Jayawardene and Gayle still have a shot at being picked. And Gavaskar, arguably the best opener in the past 4 decades (I am not saying he is, but you can make a good case) does not have a shot.

      On the bright side, 15000 international runs disqualifies all the England players, past and present. So we can have the reasonable expectation that Cook won’t make it in the top 4.

      I suspect Gilchrist, Tendulkar, Viv Richards will be the top 3 picks. Not sure who the last one will be.

      Like

  11. Grenville Dec 22, 2015 / 12:12 am

    Shiv Chanderpaul? (I have a penchant for monomaniacal oddballs). Sobers (although his last test was ’74)? I’m struggling to find 8. Inzi? Mohammed Yousef? Javid Miandad? Younis Khan? You’re pushing it a bit. Carl Hooper for wearing a hat so well. Jimmy Adams, because he was so loveable and good. I do think Barry Richards is a good call. Here is my official ‘I hate Lara’ top 8 bats of the last 40 years:
    1. Viv. R. 2. Barry R. 3. Sachin T. 4. Kumar S. 5. Shiv C. 6. Younis K. 7. AB dV. 8. Brian Lara.

    It’s ludicrous, isn’t it?

    It is Hanif Mohamed’s birthday today/yesterday.

    Like

    • d'Arthez Dec 22, 2015 / 2:33 pm

      Chanderpaul falls short. Younis and AB are still playing.

      Gavaskar has to be in there, right? (Probably not, since it would not reflect favourably on Cook).

      Miandad?

      Border at a stretch (captaincy). Same with Kallis (fast bowling option). Even more unlikely Mohammad Yousuf, Mike Hussey, and a fair number of others.

      Like

      • Grenville Dec 22, 2015 / 11:40 pm

        I forgot about Ponting and Gavaskar somehow. They all fall short of Lara, I think. It is completely ludicrous. I could look it up, but what did he average? I did not realise there was a ban on contemporary players.

        Like

      • d'Arthez Dec 23, 2015 / 2:42 am

        Miandad in at 6, Hayden at 5. Ummm, ummm … Seriously?

        Like

    • MM Dec 22, 2015 / 1:46 pm

      Hate to say it but Ricky Ponting was pretty tidy. Captain Waugh, too.

      Like

      • SimonH Dec 22, 2015 / 1:58 pm

        Hughes has Ponting at No.9 which is only marginally less preposterous than Lara at No.8.

        Like

  12. Sherwick Dec 22, 2015 / 11:13 am

    Brendan McCullum to retire in Feb before the World T20 comp. Can’t help thinking that the recent Chris Cairns trial has hastened his decision..?
    Sad that another exciting cricketer will soon be gone from the international scene.

    Like

    • Andy Dec 22, 2015 / 11:53 am

      Chatting to a mate this morning (one of those strange ‘real world’ people), about this.

      we were both surprised that it would be before the Wt20, but also thought it might be the hangover from Cairns.

      Surely he has 4 more years as a nomad t20 player (which again makes retiring before the Wt20 a surprise).

      Hope his legacy is remembered for his spirit and approach to captaincy – aggressive yet fair to the oppo.

      Like

  13. MM Dec 22, 2015 / 1:48 pm

    I love Brendon McCullum. Sad he’s going. Hope he does another stint at the Brum Bears.

    Like

    • Tuffers86 Dec 23, 2015 / 11:53 am

      He’s only gone and signed for the bad guys in 2016. That’s a major disappointment.

      Like

    • d'Arthez Dec 23, 2015 / 12:19 pm

      Oh, I see there is an Associate cricketer of the year. Presumably that means there was a World Cup. The things you learn by looking at such lists …

      Like

    • Mark Dec 23, 2015 / 12:35 pm

      The ECB/media/PR agencies will really love those award winners.

      Englands only winner is an umpire.

      Like

      • Tuffers86 Dec 23, 2015 / 2:21 pm

        Umpire Ravi was robbed.

        Like

    • SimonH Dec 23, 2015 / 1:40 pm

      After last year’s farrago (to borrow a Lawrence Booth-ism), Selvey’s review of the year is eagerly anticipated……

      Like

      • Mark Dec 23, 2015 / 3:14 pm

        It will be 90% about the Ashes. Well, 3 of the test matches anyway. No doubt there will be the usual derogatory remark about KP. Probably about his 300 and the Strauss meeting.

        Oh, and a prediction for England to win easily in South Africa. Selvey does not rate South Africa. Even when they had Kalas and Smith. He seems to view their number 1 status as odd. Anything other than a an easy England test series victory will make Selvey look like a complete Pratt.

        Like

      • Sherwick Dec 23, 2015 / 11:35 pm

        Yes, the one thing that scared the s**t out of the ECB and got their media luvvie friends into a masochistic frenzy was an England qualified batsman scoring a thrilling 355 not out in a county match just before the Ashes.

        Like

        • LordCanisLupus Dec 24, 2015 / 9:16 am

          What’s the big deal with the joint 30th highest score of all time? Anyone could do it against THAT attack!

          Like

    • RufusSG Dec 24, 2015 / 6:14 pm

      I would probably have given Cook an 8, and Stokes a 7, but apart from that I think the ratings are mostly fair enough (I think recent form has had a bearing on some of them, hence why Amla and Steyn are both 8 and not 9, whilst Cook’s big UAE runs push him up to a 9). I may be biased as a bit of a de Villiers fanboy, but I have few qualms with him being given 10, especially since he was the only South African to really hold his own with the bat in extremely tough circumstances in India.

      Like

      • SimonH Dec 24, 2015 / 7:30 pm

        What does Root have to do to be rated a 9? He averages 54 (highest for his country for half a century), is 5 ranking points off being No.1 batsman in the world and his runs tend to win matches.

        Steyn has the highest SR of any bowler ever with 300+ Test wickets. And he is only an 8…..?

        Like

      • RufusSG Dec 24, 2015 / 10:40 pm

        Fair point. In retrospect, I think that Cook and Root should probably get the same rating, whether that’s an 8 or a 9, since they’ve both scored a heap of runs this year and been our only two consistently decent batsmen time after time. I suspect the reluctance to give Steyn an 8 is down to an uncertainty whether he’ll be at his rip-roaring best coming straight back from injury, even though looking at his whole career you’d obviously give him a 9, maybe more on a good day.

        But eh. They’re just one guy’s ratings in a paper. Maybe I’m overthinking this.

        Like

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