Standing At The Limit Of An Endless Ocean

From 2006, not 2002. Pre-digital camera in 2002…..

Dmitri here. I wrote a blatant filler post (actually lifted from How Did We Lose In Adelaide in the early days) about the visit to Brisbane in 2002. Given we have analysed the last test in great detail, and Sean may well have more to say tomorrow, I thought I’d put on the metaphorical pipe and slippers, sit back in the proverbial armchair and do my best impression of Rowley Birkin QC and give you my memories of the 2002 test in Adelaide.

But before I do, can I remind those that filled out the Ashes Panel question last time that if they want to do it again, can I have the answers by mid-evening tomorrow. I would have chased up today, but I’ve been on a day trip to Madrid. As you do. And as I had to get in because one thing today and 2002 have in common is genuinely how amazed I am at my fortune in life. But, the questions were on one of the posts on Monday, so pick them up and have a go. And if you didn’t participate, feel free to send me answers on .

OK. Memories of Adelaide 2002. Self-indulgent but I hope you enjoy them:

  • Accommodation – That was fun. We were due to be in Adelaide for just the first three days of the test before flying home, but I managed to wangle a few extra days off and so we were going to try to see the whole test. Thing was, we hadn’t booked anywhere in Adelaide. Three days before we sat in an internet cafe, and no luck. The nearest was Mount Gambier. A phone call at a tourist office and we found somewhere in Glenelg. We had to do all sorts to get the key as we didn’t arrive in Adelaide until 10pm the day before the test. The cab driver was brilliant. The accommodation, less so. We wandered down to The Jetty Bar, karaoke was on, and a local was signing Gary Glitter. Not cool, even then.
  • Tickets – We then were due to pick the tickets up from, we thought, the ticket office at the ground. We got there 45 minutes before the day’s play, and found out that we were actually meant to get the tickets back in the city centre. Then, in a brilliant piece of customer service, they let us in without tickets, and someone then collected the left behind tix and brought them to our seats. We missed the first 15 minutes.
  • We didn’t miss the Langer “catch” off Vaughan. Absolutely bleedin’ hilarious, made even more so when Andy Bichel claimed one off at least the second bounce a little while later. England started well, but lost Trescothick before lunch.
  • We had a walk around the ground, and as you do, I started talking to an Aussie called Michael (and his less talkative mate Bernie, and it wasn’t the Winters) and found a great rapport on talking cricket. I ended up meeting them both by the same floodlight for each of the four days (when I returned in 2006, I went to the same place, to see if he was there – no joy). On the third day he said he really rated Harmison and said he’d win us tests some day. I laughed. He knew more than me.
  • On day 1 we had four blokes with 4x shirts sitting in front of us. When they weren’t spouting nonsense they were playing cards. The nonsense got too much. That night in the Jetty, I got talking to a local and said I was sat behind some absolute muppets in 4x shirts, playing cards. I think you can fill in the rest. We made our excuses and left.
  • It’s a great shame that Vaughan has chosen the low road of being the reactive, go with the wind moron he is now, because the 177 he made was stunning. Sure Langer can moan, but the shot making, the sixes, the domination of the attack was amazing.. His dismissal off the last ball of the day was cataclysmic.
  • We heard Great Southern Land by Icehouse at lunch. And then Beautiful Day by U2. By the end of the test I never wanted to hear them again.
  • The second day was less memorable for the cricket, but Sir Peter still raises the lunchtime interview. I had not had a cigarette (I was a smoker then) for all of a couple of days and I was feeling spectacularly grumpy. England had collapsed, I’d been surrounded by even more idiots, there were jokes falling flat, and I had had enough. Sir Peter set his video off, and I just ranted. Yes, unbelievable. After it was finished, I stormed round to the floodlight, begged Michael for a cigarette (and he provided the strongest ciggie I’ve ever had) and then we settled in for the Australian reply.
  • The Saturday was to be the last day in the flea pit in Glenelg. We had booked the Holiday Inn for the Sunday and Monday. That was because we’d got our flights changed, at no cost, out of Adelaide on the Wednesday, not the Sunday. Watching Australia give us a pasting was not particularly fun. Ponting made 150-odd, Martyn 90-odd and Hussain trolled Steve Waugh. But we conceded 500+ and had a dodgy end of day to end it three down (I believe, not checked the score).
  • That Saturday was the hottest day I have ever encountered. 41 degrees C. Jeepers. I fried. And then, during the tea interval, there was a race taking place on the field (it is on the tour video, with a local, who clearly knew one of the runners, calling him a a maggot. Must be a term of endearment) and it was the stupidest thing I’d ever seen.
  • That Saturday night we found out what thongs were in Australia. It was hot in herre.
  • Sunday was an interesting day. The forecast was a shocker. Rain was due, and when it came, it would set in for a day and a half. England needed to survive. We did rain dances. Extend your holiday and want it to rain. Love being English.
  • “Was this the greatest catch of all time?”
  • Stewart made a half century but post-lunch the rain started, and with England 8 or 9 down, they went off. We rejoiced. We should not have done so. Steve Bucknor wasn’t going to let England get away with this. While the drizzle eased a little, it didn’t stop, but Bucknor brought them out. Then they went off again – but no, out we came again and Australia sealed the win. Within half an hour the heavens opened. It absolutely hosed it down all day the following day. There would have been no play. We were 30 minutes away (if you were there and remember it differently, please tell me).
  • I’ve never watched Hard To Kill again. It entertained us that Sunday night.
  • Monday was the Bradman Museum / Exhibition. We also booked a Barossa Valley tour the day after although I’m a beer person rather than vino. The Bradman museum was dull. Kept wanting to say he was the best player of medium pace bowling of all time, but that might be like going to the Vatican and saying eff the Pope. We made our excuses and left.
  • The Barmy Army do that night at the Prison was an eye opener. We were in and around them at times, and watched the end of the game with them, but the do was everything I feared. We did have a lovely picture taken with Dermot Reeve though. A career highlight.
  • A night in a 5* hotel in Adelaide to finish our stay was somewhat melancholy. It had been the holiday of a lifetime – Brisbane, on to the stunning Port Douglas (I sent an e-mail home saying now I knew what true relaxations was) and the Barrier Reef, then staying with Sir Peter’s friends in Sydney before Adelaide was top stuff. I wonder if cricketers know what joy that brought to me even though we were losing. That’s why the heart is in it, even when we get told to do one by the powers that be. When a day’s cricket at the SCG, to see a New South Wales team with lots of top players, is an afterthought it tells you how much I loved what we did.
  • The test at Adelaide also brought my favourite ever photo. It has me in it, so you can’t see it, but it is shortly after we have lost. The people around me, in all shapes, sizes and actions, with the scoreboard. It’s on my system as “We’ve Lost”. It’s cracking (in my eyes).

OK – that was my walk down memory lane, and as a little break from the 1st test analysis. Hope you enjoyed it and I’ll do one for Perth 2006 for the 3rd test. I think I’ve written enough about Adelaide 2006 to last a lifetime.


23 thoughts on “Standing At The Limit Of An Endless Ocean

  1. man in a barrel Nov 28, 2017 / 11:36 pm

    Have you ever read Proust? His very long novel is about, among many other things, about how we are made up of our memories but the way we view those memories varies according to circumstances, and the memories themselves subtly change over time according to the story we want to tell..


  2. man in a barrel Nov 28, 2017 / 11:38 pm

    All your posts about that tour make me wonder whether you could get a Booker prize if you could piece them together with a commentary about your inner growth and family


    • LordCanisLupus Nov 28, 2017 / 11:39 pm

      Had too much outer growth (as I found when crammed into a 17 inch width, 28 inch pitch seat this evening) to care about inner growth!


    • LordCanisLupus Nov 29, 2017 / 12:46 pm

      Ed Smith me?

      Oooo er.

      Or do you just want to copy it and pass it off as your own. #EdthePlagiarst.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Scrim Nov 29, 2017 / 9:36 am

    See, this is what I would struggle with if I tried to write about 2006, like you suggested LCL! Yes Warne bowled unchanged, England went into their shell and Hussey batted like it was overs 30-40 of an ODI… but what are my personal memories from that day?
    – I was a student on my summer break soon after exams and just pissing the day away, listening on ABC Grandstand. After all, it was guaranteed to peter out to a draw.
    – I rang my mate Jonesy after a couple of wickets fell, caught the the next bus in and met him during the lunch break under the Moreton Bay figs next to the scoreboard.
    – it cost $5 to get in. I thought to myself later that day that it was the best $5 I’d ever spent
    – I was wishing as harder than I had for anything else, that those last couple of wickets would fall before tea. When they did fall, I was pretty confident they could finish the job.
    – people began flooding in around 4-5pm as work finished for the day,
    – by the time the winning runs were hit, there were probably 15000+ there? Not sure, but there was a great atmosphere, and a mix of elation and amazement in the air that it actually happened… and this feeling filtered all the way out to North Terrace as we left the ground.

    When you’ve been to Adelaide Oval 100 times, and can see the Bradman Stand from your stop every day while you wait for the bus home , you lose a lot of detail of individual visits.

    I think I went to at least one day of the 2002 test as well… Maybe 2. I think I might have seen Ponting make that 150, but he was doing it pretty much every year in Adelaide at that stage in his career, so maybe I’m getting it mixed up with another. I can clearly remember seeing Vaughan making his century and I can remember seeing Key’s name on the scoreboard – things I definitely didn’t ever see live again. I didn’t see McGrath’s catch live – I remember seeing it for the first time on the news later that day. I also recall a meeting boyfriend of one of my schoolmates, who had snuck in a bottle of whisky or something, and who spent the latter part of the day trying to get the Barmy Army’s attention and sledge them. Embarassing.

    The one thing your memories triggered for me was those songs! Hahaha! Yes, all day long Icehouse and U2. Was this song there too? Could have been another year.


    • LordCanisLupus Nov 29, 2017 / 12:25 pm

      Cheers Scrim. I could do 200 memories of 2006. Did a full write up of the first days last year.


  4. thebogfather Nov 29, 2017 / 11:37 am

    I so enjoy your memories of being there
    I’d love to be able to spend just one day
    At a Test, I wouldn’t care where
    To sate a sole soul fable, to expend my cricketing love, just to say
    ‘I was there’…

    AshesPanel2 sent!


  5. Sir Peter Nov 29, 2017 / 11:37 am

    Ah fond memories D’mitri…it’s odd that many people avoid Adelaide on the grand test tour and that it has a rep as being the lessor of the places to visit. I’ve recommended Glenelg to Cook.R. Hope Madrid was a muy Bueno or is the beano? As for this time round, the ECWB team need to fight fire with fire…


    • LordCanisLupus Nov 29, 2017 / 12:22 pm

      Just don’t leave your wallet out. Or put tin foil wrapped food in a microwave. Or wash your socks at 4am.


  6. Miami Dad's Six Nov 29, 2017 / 3:14 pm

    A lot of chat about Lyon over the past few days – particularly in the English media – about him being ‘under-rated’ or ‘unsung’. Am I the only one who thought Lyon was always a good bowler, always a better bowler than Ali, and always likely to be able to trouble left handers and pin down right handers? He’s been doing it for years. He’s got over 250 Test wickets and is the top 40 Test wicket takers – EVER. THe 4 man attack doesn’t work without Lyon. They can swap any of their seamers with Pattinson, Bird, Siddle etc and not lose too much, but he’s the most important bowler by miles and has been for the last 5 years.

    They do the same every away tour we go on, usually about a spinner, and it’s pretty embarrassing.
    “jeez that tubby Herath fellow looks good”
    “I’d say Shakib Al Hasan is probably good enough to get in England’s team”

    They then go on to say that they’re probably only good in home conditions, whilst lamenting how toothless and slow Anderson looks with a Kookaburra ball…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. SimonH Nov 29, 2017 / 4:28 pm

    Uh-oh, never say it can’t get any worse –


    • oreston Nov 29, 2017 / 4:52 pm

      Just saw this. Does the timing of his trip to NZ take on a new significance? A last taste of freedom, perhaps, before being re-arrested, charged and presumably bailed with conditions restricting his movements? If there were going to be a trial it could be quite a number of months away, so I think the chances of him playing any part in the Ashes may have just worsened considerably.


  8. SimonH Nov 29, 2017 / 4:58 pm

    “Get some good news out there, Hughes minor….”

    “There is a growing realisation that women (i.e. mothers and wives/partners) make the majority of the ‘business’ decisions in households so there will be a major campaign to make them feel more involved in cricket’s mysterious world.”

    Love that “i.e.”. Would nobody be quite sure who women were without it?

    “One of the most interesting developments is the recruitment of the British film director Sam Mendes on to the World Cup directorial board”.

    A maker of truly terrible films IMVHO.

    “His role will be to create major artistic events around World Cup venues to maximise the buzz and increase engagement”.

    Why not just do away with the cricket altogether?

    “The idea will be to stage blocks of World Cup matches at the same ground, so that that the city or venue becomes a major focus for a week”.

    This is a new one – and it sounds like a truly terrible idea. Tired pitches and fleeced spectators? The latter could be avoided by some imaginative ticketing – but this is the ECB so that won’t happen.

    “This all adds up to an ideal launchpad for the ECB’s major new construction, the city T20 tournament in 2020. The board are not deterred by the aborting of the South African’s swanky-sounding T20 Global League for this year, declaring that their own concept is based on far more solid and painstakingly dug foundations and much more rigorous research. Far from the new tournament destroying the fabric of county cricket, the ECB believe it will enhance it. Their chief executive Tom Harrison actually wants to see the expansion of the first-class county structure, perhaps to 20 or 21 counties, rather than any shrinkage”.

    Comedy gold.


    • oreston Nov 29, 2017 / 5:30 pm

      Sam Mendes, eh? Sounds like the ECB have come up with a jolly wheeze to piss another few million quid up the wall. Didn’t he direct the last Bond film? What was it called? “Sphincter” or something?


      • SimonH Nov 29, 2017 / 8:50 pm

        He directs massively over-extended ego-trips that manage to produce one or two half-decent moments amid a ton of instantly forgettable filler with a cast that are paid huge wads of cash but don’t raise any generate any of the affection of their predecessors.

        Why he’s considered suitable to direct a cricket World Cup I don’t know.


    • Mark Nov 29, 2017 / 9:16 pm

      He couldn’t sound more smug and patronising if he tried.

      I honestly think if the ECB said they were going to sell off all cricket grounds in the country to developers, and in future play blacjack these morons would say “oh how wonderful.”


    • nonoxcol Nov 29, 2017 / 9:52 pm

      Did someone say “advertorial”?.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s