I am officially under the pump. No longer am I the resident player blogger for the Cricket Australia website. In fact, I have been bumped off the main page and onto the blog list with the other plebs. There are new blog writers coming from all over the place. Little Virat Kohlibrow (Tom Triffitt) is writing an academy blog, Nathan Hauritz is “attempting” to keep us up to speed with what’s happening in the Ashes. I can’t match this. I can tell you about how I maxed out at 75 kilos on the 1 rep Bench Press and that I shared a dance with Annie Lennox at the Mercury Lounge in Melbourne a few years ago.... Ritz will be sharing tales of how he met the queen... not of pop – The actual Queen!! And how he and Brett Lee sit down at breakfast and eat 15 Weet Bix. I have always queried this.. Are there even 15 in a pack? There is no bowl in the world big enough to fit 15 Weet Bix. Does he eat them out of a giant pot plant?. Question marks... He will also be filling you in on the day to day issues that being on an Ashes trip brings – should I buy an investment property in London? When is the service due on the Aston Martin? What are my Blue Chip shares doing? Good luck Ritz – Turn and burn baby!!
Currently I am at the Academy in Brisbane putting some work in before the Australia A One-Day games vs Pakistan. Being involved with the elite junior cricketers in the country takes me back some decade ago to when I was a fresh faced youngster!!
I served my time at the Del Monte on Henley beach in Adelaide. This is where my love affair with the gym started. I remember turning up late to a Rod Marsh gym session. It was a stock standard Adelaide morning. Sideways sleet and 4 degrees. I ran into the gym falling over myself trying to put my socks and shoes on whilst eating toast and drinking coffee – the look on Rods face was very scary. He said “you better get those shoes on quick sticks, because you are gonna run” I get my shoes on and walk over to the treadmill. Rod explodes “where do you think you’re going Geeves? You’re running along the beach to the furthest jetty and back and you’re going to do it in 30 minutes!!” I looked outside and said to Rod “um Rod sir, not only does your moustache look well groomed this morning, but the beach is covered with water and its 4 degrees and sleeting sideways and without sounding like a whinger, the furthest jetty is 8 kilometres away ” Rod smiled and said “I know, you now have 28 minutes”. True story
From that story, you can understand why I hate the gym so much. These sorts of memories stay with you forever. Whenever I see a high tide I start crying. If I see someone in the street that looks like Rod Marsh, I hide behind the nearest garbage bin. I made my Dad shave off his moustache because I couldn’t sit in the same room as him without having a Rod Marsh flashback. Yep, the Academy did wonders for my cricket.
The Aussie boys failed in their mission that was T20 World Cup Cricket. Chris Gayle went Sonic Boom on the bowlers and that was the end of that. There were balls flying into the local school and onto the roof of the Oval. It was like a game of backyard cricket, the ball was lobbed back over the fence with dog slobber on it and the neighbour yelling “that’s the last time you boys, next time I’m letting Perry the Pooch destroy it”. Thanks Mrs Smith you rotten old bag!!
It’s a strange game T20. I don’t care what anyone says, it’s designed for the batters to embarrass the bowlers. Ask Damien Wright. Hit for 7 straight sixes against the Magpies in a Grade game at KGV. Tonked into the Glenorchy pool on successive deliveries and then five straight to start the next over... Shocking game if you’re getting hit into a pool that is not only out of the ground but across the road with a good 20 metres between the main fence and the pool. Its 137 metres.. I paced it out!! Just an 8 iron, that is thinned and gets caught in the long grass. Then a 54 degree wedge and 3 putts. Another double for me!!
Big Steve Harmison came out and made the statement that the secret to success against Phil Hughes is to bowl at his ribs. I agree. As I am discussing this, keep in the back of your mind that Phil’s average against Tasmania is the sole reason he is getting picked for Australia. I think its 99.4 or something similar. I personally have had some good battles with Phil and I love his tenacity as a player. I have bowled to him at Newcastle and the SCG which are slow old rotters for the bowlers. Bellerive is a wicket that you can bowl some short stuff and get good reward. The last time we played Phil our plan was to hit him in the head. I’m not going to lie to you; it was fiery stuff from Hilf and I. He got hit in the arm, the head, the chest and the pads... and after the food fight finished we went out for some cricket where Phil was hit in the arm, the head and the gloves plenty of times. He offered what we thought were plenty of chances. He didn’t look pretty going about his business and this is where I agree with Steve Harmison. But... this but is the same size as mine.. Ridiculously big butt! When Hilf and I had finished our 8 over long spells – 16 over’s in the game... Phil was on 60 and NSW had effectively batted us out of the game. He went on to score over 50 percent of the NSW runs for the game. The first player to do this I believe. A remarkable statistic given that we didn’t pitch one ball in his half and this is also England’s master plan to the little maestro – England – GOOD LUCK WITH THAT!!
In other news, the NBA season is done and dusted with the Los Angeles Lakers taking out the title as champs. The Lakers only deficiency for the year was the ability to stop the opposition’s best guard. On the first day of Free Agency they sign the best one on one defender in the league.. Ron Artest. Probably best known to cricket fans as the guy that was suspended for 82 games (a full NBA season) for entering the stand and beating the living beegeebers out of a fan who threw some beer on him as he lay on the scorers desk in dispute of a bad call from the ref. Lakers next year in a canter. They cannot be beaten with the addition of Ron Ron. My Mavericks have done nothing in Free Agency and will need a blockbuster trade that involves some Defence if they are to be contenders for next year’s title. The reason I write about basketball in my blog is that I have not seen a chief NBA writer in any Newspaper in Australia – This is a shout out to The Australian, The Herald Sun, The Mercury, The Advertiser, The Illawarra News and The Advocate... I’m your man!