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Spanky doesn't like England much:

Broken England served by few players

TONIGHT, Andrew Flintoff and his disintegrating team have one last chance to beat the Australians. After that comes a final encounter with a competitive Kiwi outfit and then a merciful return to the greyness of the land they inhabit.

It is a nation despoiled by voyeuristic newspapers, obsessed with soccer, driven by desperate nationalism, a nation of cringing monarchists and lager louts leavened by sudden shafts of doomed humour better expressed in the cries of the Barmy Army than in soap operas populated by baleful characters.

I don't think I like Roebuck much as a person, given the stuff he writes. He's got chips on both his shoulders, and possibly some on his ankles as well.

Oh good. A while back I heard him talking about his cricket sponsorship thingo in Zimbabwe but couldn't find any info out about it. And if it isn't on the net it doesn't exist. Still doesn't tell you if you can help in any way.

He writes/says some good stuff (game day tactics, where he has an acute eye), and he writes/ says some nonsense (chucking, where he's gone mad).

You could send an email to "contact" address, Amanda.


Channel Nine News was heavily into cross promo last night with a long item about how Richie Benaud was going to be inaugurated into the Hall O' Fame. Bollox. Then Richie gave out some flannel about how now that he'd been out of the game for five years he was comfortable accepting the nomination. What's changed between now and last year? He still commentates, he's still on the ICC match committee. Nine were probably desperate to get him into the HOF before he croaked in the box.

Yesterday, too, he did something he rarely does. He made a prediction.

"[Stu] Clark is using a technique often used in the latter overs, he is bowling full tosses, which are hard to get away. But he's not fast enough."

Next ball Clark got a wicket with a full toss.

And yesterday the Nine nobs were talking more than the usual ammount of rubbish. At one point during the Kiwi innings nearly EVERYTHING they said was stupid. Not just merely standard Nine stupid, but really, wrong, dumb stupid. I'm sure it wasn't just me having a grumpy day.

The way he writes about every game as if he's sending dispatches from the Crimean War used to annoy me, I must've mellowed.

You could send an email to "contact" address, Amanda.

Too much effort. Give me a paypal button or give me death.

You can send the money to me instead. I'll make sure it's passed on.

OT again.

Are the "experts" reading too much into England's win on Friday?

Given that England have won all of the four tosses against Australia this ODI summer, it was only a matter of time before they put together a reasonable score for Australia to chase. Batting first every time, they were bound to win eventually. Especially on the SCG where any teams batting first and scoring at least 200 nearly always wins.

And as for Joyce - phhht! The mishits galore reminded me of Flatty at his worst.

OT Again Again.

The After Grog Blog, the blog o' Totalling Tee, is the only blog on a blogroll of a blog that blogs about grog.

Ivanhoe? Robin Hood? Waverley? What, has sipping Sinney suddenly gone all literary, like? Anyhoo, might try and check out one or two of those veen-yoos next visit.

TT, I think it was in Australia's interest to take the foot off England's neck for a while. They are now even with the sheep-shagger's for the 2nd final spot and I know who I'd rather face.

Anyway, I'm hoping that the selectors now realise that:
a. We need McGrath & Bracken in any one-day side;
b. S Clark is not that good a one-day bowler;
c. The S. Tait swinging yorker should now be patented and issued as standard kit for all Aussie fast bowlers.

Can't see McGrath and Clark in the same lineup in the same way I can't see Johnston and Bracken together. Bit too same-o, same-o. I'd also like to see Hogg in there somewhere; probably in place of White.

At the moment:

Georgie Hogg
Nathan B
Larry Tait

It's a longish tail, but losing Roy to injury and Watson being breakable means No.7 is anyone's guess.

Sacrificing one of the above bowlers for a batsman or a batsman-part-time-bowler might just save White. Pity he's not a better bowler.

TT, can't agree more about White. The selectors have given him a good go this series but his lucklustre bowling, combined with not much in the way of batting rates him below Hogg in my books.

Was very impressed by Tait last night. Good to see a sharp bit of one-day fast bowling from an Aussie.

A good leggy is precisely the sort of bowler you need when the likes of Sorth Efrica and In Zid (two smart bets for the World Cup) are on a roll.

Or a chucker.

Nice jumper in the bar of the Robin Hood.
I'd be inclined to check that venue out myself.

You mean the black tee-shirt drinking the pot middie? Yes, I'm quite partial to them.

To think I was mocked here for a Tait selection earlier this summer. Who'da thunk it, huh?

You're South Australian. You don't count.

I hope when Punter hit the runs that took him to a hundred that there was someone standing next to Hayden and Joyce saying "Now, THAT was a century". From the first ball he was in the groove, whereas Hodge might as well have been holding his dick for the first 20 minutes of his knock.

Tait was impressive, but consistency will always be an issue with him. I agree that the accountant looks a bit ordinary in the one-dayers whilst Clarke the blond bombshell has a bit of the Bell/Collingwood lack of power problem, but can bowl a bit. Jury still out on White. Symonds a big loss.

Of course, before the last World Cup, most of us were saying Symonds was a dead loss, not a big loss.

Now if we lost Hussey, then I'd really start to worry!

Don't agree about Hodge, Woody. Sure he was slow to get going, but once he was set, he was very set. Nor does he look frantic when he's going after runs, but instead accumulates in a rush. IF he can settle into the one-day side - that's IF - he'll be a valuable addition.

He's also a bloody good fieldsman, despite dropping a catch on Sunday.

Tait still worries me. That action is just not repeatable enough for my liking. He only needs one loss of radar under the pressure of a big game and the World Cup will be lost. Still, the first two matches are against Scotland and Holland, so I'd certainly be letting him loose early.

I'd rather NOT count than be incapable of doing so...

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