Mid-wicket Tales: From Trumper To Tendulkar

By S.Giridhar and V.J. Raghunath (245 pages) SAGE Publications ISBN 978-81-321-1738-4 ‘Every Form of Spin – That’s India’, starts the 19th chapter of Mid-wicket Tales, and it appears that the irony of the title might have been lost on the two tragics who have authored the work, S Giridhar and V.J. Raghunath or “I (Giridhar)” and “One of us (Raghunath)” as they soon become known, making it a point to document who is remembering what, and when, in their slightly barmy two-handed essays. For some of the statistics, and the conclusions they draw from them, have been spun in curious […]

Chew Like Buggery

The appearance of the battered red and green card on top of the deck, looking a lot like Steve Waugh’s latter day baggy green cap, is enough to bring back strong memories of the 1990-91 summer. There were 84 to collect, sold in packs of five, with the ever-present powdered strip of Stimorol – The Sportsman’s Gum – duly dusting up the wrapper. The best thing to be said for the chewie is that you never would have bought it without the cards, which I picked up for twenty cents a pack at the Louth Park Corner Shop. In those […]

Arise, Sir Rosimus

Of all the people who deserve praise for Australia’s dominance over the auld enemy in the first three test matches, Chris Rosimus – the performance nutritionist of the English and Wales Cricket Board – deserves a special mention. At the time of writing, England has more dishes (194) on the menu prepared by Rosimus than they have scored as runs in the first innings of a test this summer. If Kevin Pietersen didn’t look himself in the afternoon session, perhaps it was the ‘blueberry and polenta muffins’ that didn’t agree with him. Similarly the ‘quinoa with roasted butternut squash, apricot […]

Grow A Beard, Jonathon

No, that’s not the name of the Nigerian President. It’s the obvious pathway back to international cricket for Jonathon Trott. The man needs some facial hair, and to learn a lesson from his destroyer in the first test Mitch ‘The Mo’ Johnson. In moustaccium sanitas. Both Johnson and Warner have been through recent stress related absences in the game themselves, but they have bounced back by embracing their inner-bogan, and unleashing the giant within – using the moustache as an outward expression of their newfound strength. Grow A Beard, Jonathon. For the love of God, Queen, and England, grow a big […]

Keep the Mo, Mitchell (Australia 1-0)

Mitchell Johnson may only have grown the latest addition to Australian Cricket History for Movember, and raising awareness for men’s health, but for the campaign to reclaim the Ashes – and the love of all things good – his new handlebar has to stay. From its very beginnings, cricket has needed its facial hair – especially among the fast bowlers. A quickie with a mo means business, no double entendre intended. Something about the look evokes fear, and adds menace to the fizz of the bullet as it passes the nose. Australia’s Fred ‘The Demon’ Spofforth was the first in […]

The Ashes 2013/14 – 1st Test Match – Day 1

I’ve been in India long enough now that it almost feels normal to rise early on a cool Delhi morning to watch Australia play in Australia – and not much different to the Ashes series that I watched as a kid, when I used to get up in winter during the middle of the night to see Australia play in England. But it feels bizarre to see Australia perform now as England used to. Like losers. There is something deeply wrong about it, as if some natural law is being broken. By the time I stumbled out and switched on […]