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I thought one ate humble pie or, at a pinch, crow.

Glad to see that the menu is expanding.

Apparently scapegoat tastes a lot like beef jerk.

Or like Ashes in one's mouth.

Sounds like one of my barbies.

Or one of your toasts.


What a ridiculous attempt to try and defend Giles. "he did his job in the last series" Which was what? Give the Australian batsman a few overs rest from the Pace attack that was skittling them?

He's a crab.

If "he did his job in the last series" is intended to mean "he fair dinkum got under my skin when he had Ponting caught at leg-slip just before lunch at Edgbaston when Ponting was absolutely flying", then "he did his job in the last series".

Nah mate - I'm with Punter on this. After the Gary Pratt Incident, followed by the Poms constant rotation policy this time around, I hate the cunt. Blame the bastard for everything.
Anyway, this sort of bloodletting is so very English. It's better than TV soaps. Well - what isn't?

Yeah, I hate him, too, he's just not a cricket goose.

This bit is priceless: "The big difference now is that he's part of an inadequate attack, rather than one in which the other four bowlers all did their jobs." Which could be read: 'Giles was carried last year by four superior bowlers. Now that Harmison and Anderson are also shithouse, his lack of ability is thrown into much sharper relief.'
To be honest, I agree with most of the article. Panesar is being talked up like the Second Coming of Christ (or Guru, in his case). He's no Warne, though. I do love the British penchant for scapegoating, though (and we do it too, but not with their gusto). Reading the English press is almost as much fun as watching the actual matches.

Following the Guradian and BBC over-by-over commentary on Tuesday was superb. No one does "Fuck, here we go again" as well as the Poms.

(Gusto is a good word.)

The Guradian - national (mythical) bird of Indonesia, innit?

No it's a health drink from the West Indies.

Breaking: Martyn retires!

Feel free to start speculating on a replacement.

Damien Martyn retirement shock

Damien Martyn has today announced his retirement from all international and domestic cricket amid intense speculation over his place in Australia's Ashes team.

Martyn notified Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland of his decision this morning which will be effective immediately.

Bring back Boof!

Wow. His quotes from the link above sound very grim, I wonder if there is a backstory to this.

Oh, ummm, Jacques to replace. Or Symonds. Or Haddin.

Basically, anyone playing first class cricket in Australia ought to be able to fill in, really.

Keeping it Giles; Boof should be picked for his bowling.

My old man reckons Love is playing well, if we are considering batsmen. He's seen the elephant.

Yeah, I buy your "elephant" reference, Fm, experience might have extra currency in the short term. I just hope whoever they pick is seeing them like an elephant.

Full credit to Martyn for making what must have been an incredibly difficult decision. Surely Hungry'll get a go now? Save Haddin for Gilly's retirement.

Can Hungry bat down the order? That's almost rhetorical, given how hard it is to get in he'd probably take anything that's coming.

But Martyn bowing out of all cricket? Either he's got a tight media deal stitched up or there is something plainly wrong.

Well, with the way Chef and the Gnome are batting lately, Hungry'd still be facing the new ball every innings, so he should be fairly comfy at 4.

Actually I think Jaques' natural game is down the order. He just happens to be the best of a meagre field if you are looking for those with the capability of being openers. Along with Shameless, I guess.

But Martin Love? Yes, that's exactly what we want. Let's look for ways to make this team older. That's the path to success, no doubt about it.

Yes, very interesting quotes. Martyn has more or less said he isn't/hasn't been committed to playing. The question, "for how long?" comes to mind. Strange timing too. Watson is still injured, so he probably wouldn't have been replaced until Melbourne

Replacements.... Hodge is injured apparently, so that probably rules him out. Rogers, Voges and North are the players in best form. Cosgrove or Jacques are the most likely. Playing Jacques now is worthwhile as well, as he is more likely to get a permanent spot soon, being the likely long-term opening replacement (along with Hussey?) for Hayden or Langer.

Cosgrove is a ODI player. Not yet ready - if ever - for Test. I hope I'm wrong.
Voges is an interesting option. Maybe just put Hungry in to start meshing him with the rest of the team.

Yeah, I couldn't imagine them going for anyone other than Hungry. Unless they decide to pick Boof as a stop-gap just for the remainder of the series.

Watson will be kicking himself with his good leg.

As I hit here thinking about it, though, I haven't seen Hungry bat for much more than his one test. How's his technique? There have been plenty of Shield/Pura run-machines who haven't been able to replicate their stats in Tests.

That's because most of them are mid-30s before they get the chance to find their feet in Test cricket. There's no point waiting for Jaques to reach that age and fail like the rest of them. Get him in now while the team's winning. I'm sure his technique'll be top-notch by the time it matters.

Cricinfo seems to think Symonds is the logical Martyn replacement for Perth. Australia's all-rounder fetish continues. That 46 bowling average of his, oh yes, he'll be an asset to the team all right.

Sideshow Roy, it is. And Adam Voges. (Vo-Jess, apparently.) I've never seen him play.

Voges - haven't seen him play either but we need to up the Sandgroper count with Martyn bowing out.

And he's another lefty chinaman. Though if Hogg can't get a game, what's his chance?

And that must mean that Jacques is then a shoe-in for an opener spot which will shortly be vacated.

It's actually Vo-jezz.

Hungry started the season like a house on fire, but I haven't been keeping up with NSW. Is he struggling at the moment? If Voges is better than North, Rogers and Marsh, he must be alright, or at least have some raw talent.

I think Clark (M) has taken Marto's position so maybe they're looking for Symonds/Voges as a backup alrounder. THough I don't think Voges bowling has been all that impressive but far better than the others you mentioned.

Interesting that Tait had to make way for the 2 additions.

And I think that Jacques has his grip firmly on an opener's place ... the selectors haven't rushed him straight in because they know he will be in shortly anyway (either once we win the Ashes or once the series ends). So at least one of the Gnome and FTB are soon to be ex.

So Cook, Strauss and Bell have done nothing of consequence in the series so far. Collingwood and Pietersen have had brain fades at crucial moments. Flintoff is carrying an injury - and has failed to bring the best out of his mate Harmy (crap this series) and his county team mate Jimmy (more run outs than bowled outs) and his old mate Gilo (worst international cricketer EVAH). Jones - a study in mediocrity. Hoggard has flown the flag. Who gets out? Marto!
Good on him for having the balls to admit he's past it - hope Gilo and Jones are watching.

ps if Monty was Australian, and he didn't get a game, it would be due to Australian racism.

This Voges is 27 years old. Seems a bit young to be thrown into the test arena. Couple him with Clarke and you've got a team hopelessly skewed towards youth and inexperience.

What's with Tait getting the boot? That boy's got pace!

He's too young, woody

In answer to Tony's original question, I certainly want to make a scapegoat of Fletcher. I don't, coz it wouldn't be fair.

But I still want to. Smartarse c***

Perhaps Panesar also prefers wine to beer? Regardless, he is not the Messiah, not even a very naughty boy. He is just a spin bowler who can actually spin the ball. Having seen him bowl, I wouldn't even put him in the MacGill class, though like MacGill, he is poor against batsmen who are not playing him aggressively. If we're to judge players by this year's playing standards rather than 2005, we should also stop harping on about Geraint Jones's keeping, just like we've forgotten Pietersen's once-poor catching skills.

Voges at 27 and Clarke at 25 make the team too young?! What on earth has become of Australian cricket if we think that way? In 1995, Ponting and Stuart Law debuted in the same match. Ponting was 20, Law 27. At the time, Slater, Brendon Julian and Glenn McGrath were all 25, Warne 26. And we wiped the floor with the Sri Lankans, who were far better than these bloody Poms.

Where did this softly softly approach come from? Too young? The team is ancient! That's the bloody problem!!

...unless I've been the victim of a sarcasm undetectable at 1am??


'Fraid so, mate.

Given the paucity of our attck us poms, by which I mean me, are reduced to recycled dads army cracks. And don't think this is the last of them. A rich comedic vein if ever I saw one.

Not sure what the idea is in bringing Roy into the side, he's a gun one-day player but his test record ain't too crash - maybe if he makes good this time around I'll change me mind.

No chance of Hodgey getting a go is there? Nope nope, hes a Victorian.

Re: Martin Love had his chance, he fucked it up.
Too bad, so sad, next please.

P.S. Who the fuck is Voges?

Woody, ahhh, if only it weren't such a prevalent view around these parts, I mightn't have fallen for it!


Is this serious? If you want a scapegoat - read this!

It's almost like reading Warwick Todd.

Well for tasty writing... I think you really can't go past Simon Barnes in The Times...

In part: "But the idea of England’s coping was unacceptable to Warne. He wouldn’t let them cope. He ate their minds." (wasn't that a plot point in Night Of The Living Dead??)

""Warne summoned up panic and, like Warne’s faithful dog, panic came panting up at his behest" (hmmm it seems a while since I have seen "behest" in an article!!) and finally

"Playing Warne is like riding an oated-up thoroughbred — once you let him know you’re afraid, you’re buggered." (although I think Warnie prefers to ride than be ridden..??)

In full: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,8303-2491030,00.html

I LIKE it !!

And yes... Chevy deserves to be the scapegoat.

Effin' 'ot!

It sounds like The Gilo is scapegoating himself. "I wake up at 7am and the first thing that comes in to my head is that this day might not run as smoothly as we would like. In an effort to just try and forget about the cricket I go to the gym to keep busy. It is one of those situations where most players are thinking it could happen but nobody dares say it."

Surely that's a paragraph whot screams "I can't handle it; you better not pick me again." Yes, it was frightfully honest, and The Gilo seems like a good bloke, but you just don't SAY it. Not out loud.

Saw that yesterday, Jimbo. (Or was it today?) In fact, I read "he ate their minds" twice; I'll be using it frequently from now on. Don't the cricket press love a juicy turn of phrase. I blame Neville Cardus. Or I congratulate him. One of the two, anyway.

I blame Shakespeare.

Or Homer (not Simpson).

At the risk of repeating himself - Barnes again:

One of the great Magic Numbers of the sporting year is surely 551: the number of runs England scored for six declared in the first innings. A first-innings declaration occurs only when a team is so far in front that further expression of dominance would be unnecessary, otiose, tautologous.

But wait... there's more !!

This time from Simon Wilde in The Sunday Times, in a column headed "How To Pin Down Ponting"...

"The jitters weren’t finished yet. When James Anderson came on, Ponting drove and edged just short of gully. He then played and missed. Then he survived a leg-before shout; the ball was just going down leg. Soon he went for a foolish single that would have cost him his innings had Paul Collingwood’s shy from midwicket hit its target. All this, remember, on a pitch deader than a Norwegian parrot..."

Ahh those Poms love their Python don't they??


Full article at http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,23069-2496288,00.html

New topic needed TT...??

Maybe about some nerf herder of a sheikh calling for us to be ousted from the Asian Soccer Federation before the 2010 World Cup qualifiers as we will ruin Asian soccer...

Or about the powder-puff Irish scrapping the international rules (silly comp though it is) because of a bit of biffo... I'm sure I have seen the Irish dish some stuff out in previous series.

Just thinking out loud.

Yep - the Paddies are a bunch of soft-cocks. IR was a joke, but they were happy to try it om themselves.

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