First - Who'll replace The Doyen?
People keep asking the wrong questions about cricket coverage. For example, "Who will Channel Nine replace Richie Benaud with when he finally goes?"
For almost a decade, that question has come up like hay-fever, imported wasps, and barbecue-related injuries at this time of year.
For starters, it is the wrong question because he is still there these many years later, and for all we know, he may follow the Queen's example, which is apparently to abdicate about the time rigor mortis sets in.
Frankly, if Benaud can survive a summer following those Twelfth Man ads for KFC, I'm pencilling him in for the 2020 Boxing Day Test.
Second, it is the wrong question, because there is patently no one who CAN directly replace him.
If Mount Kosciuszko suddenly disappears, it is not like it can be replaced with a robust two-storey home, or some telephone books stacked on a step-ladder.
They will have someone else anchor the telecasts, they will try various combinations of 37 others trying to synthesise a semblance of the Sahara-oriented wit, the gentle authoritativeness, the sense of history and perspective, and the sheer unfailing horse-sense, and jolly good luck to 'em.
What Benaud's got, you can't buy off the rack (not referring to the infamous ice-cream-salesman suits, of course).
Finally, the question is not "When will he go?" or "Who will replace him?" so much as "How long can we keep him around?"
One of sport's more punishing truisms is you are a long time retired. When he finally does sail off into the Benaud-Tomorrow, we're going to be an awfully long time without him.
Second - Which is better, TV or Radio?
Another of the wrong questions people always ask about cricket coverage is: "Why can't the TV version be more like the radio version?"
Here is an instructive experiment which Leapster actually carried out over the entire final day of Steve Waugh's Test career. Watch the game with the TV and radio sound up, at about equal volume. After a short while, madness will set in. After that, it is possible to observe a couple of things.
Benaud may follow the Queen's example, which is apparently to abdicate about the time rigor mortis sets in.
The radio guys talk at least five times as much as the TV geezers. One possible conclusion is that if you had to put up with that while trying to watch the game, it would drive you spare, not to mention costing a small fortune each time the screen was smashed in and repaired.
If you then turn away from the TV, and switch the radio off, you will not only become a little sleepy, but may observe that silences that a fleet of trucks could be driven comfortably through at speed are not the perfect medium for disseminating information or atmosphere from a sporting event you cannot see.
At the risk of repeating oneself, until we are all teal in the face, the key difference between Nine's cricket and ABC cricket is not commercialism v purity, or populism v elitism, or even T. Greig v reality. It's radio v television, pure and simple.
Personally, I'll take TV AND radio.