Sunday, 21 November 2010

Yet more from Collingwood's sock

Collingwood's sock was very positive in his exclusive report to Fantasy Bob following England's 10 wicket victory over Australia A this week.  'Life in the sock drawer just gets better and better.  I shared a big partnership with Belly-boy who showed he is a different class of sock altogether, hitting it to all parts of the ground.  Good wickets for our back up bowlers too.  Job done. Colly lent Monty one of my chums from his sock drawer for the game - and just see what a difference it made to his fielding.  What a catch - what a man - what a sock!'

And here's a link to Monty's catch.  Internet hit of the day - whatever that means.

The sock went on 'And I hear Scotland turned over South Africa at Murrayfield.  Fantastic.  The boys are very pleased - well all except KP and Trott obviously.....'
Elsewhere as the big day approaches there has been a lot of balls talked.  To be precise, the differences between the Kookaburra and the Duke have had as much coverage as the Royal Wedding, and a damn sight more interesting too.  The conventional view is that the Kookaburra's seam is less proud and the ball gets softer sooner (and some of us thought that everything in Australian cricket was hard). This makes it less useful for swing bowling.  Glen McGrath has been amongst those opining - pointing out that he averaged six wickets a Test with the Dukes, and four with the Kookaburra.   'Give me a Duke anytime,'  he said.  A tweet from Kate Middleton responded - 'A Duke? How common - I've got a Prince.'

No one told Tim Bresnan that he had the inferior ball as he took 4-86 in the second innings in Hobart. 

And here's the best comment on what bowling is all about that FB has seen for some time - again from McGrath interviewed in the Guardian:
Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to keep it simple. The two weapons I had were accuracy and bounce. I could land the ball where I wanted. I don't really know where that accuracy came from. I put plenty of hours in the nets but it was always the feel to me, rather than looking at a spot on the wicket. I only looked at getting a batsman out in three ways: bowled, lbw or caught by the keeper or slips. And because of my accuracy I always had the fielders there. I didn't need extra guys on the leg side or at cover in case I bowled a half-volley. I wanted those guys catching.
Then Ben Hilfenhaus says he has plans to get under the nose of England captain Andrew Strauss during the Ashes series.  The Hilfenhaus Moustache could be the fashion statement of the year.  Start growing yours for Christmas now.

And former  Australia opener Justin Langer believes former WA team-mates Hussey and Marcus North will make it through the Ashes, as long as they ignore the 'mountain of distractions'.  Yeh, yeh - distractions like straight balls, in-swingers, off-cutters, bouncers, yorkers and arm balls.

But the state games have seen some of the Aussies run into form, with much needed confidence boosting performances by Mike Hussey and Mitchell Johnson.  The main surprise is the Australian selectors have left out Nathan Hauritz in favour of left arm spinner Xavier Doherty.  (Panesar for Swanny anyone?)  Could he be the first player with a name beginning with X to play Test cricket?  Expect excruciating puns about the X-factor in all the popular press this week.  These puns have been spotted by Fantasy Bob, but even he would not stoop so low as to use them.

And the cracks in the once mighty structure of Australian cricket seem to be spreading.  This is a picture of the square at Perth this week.

Fancy a bat?

And finally, Fantasy Bob cannot remember ever having watched cricket on ITV, a channel for him forever associated with Bob Monkhouse and the Golden Shot, Morse, Taggart and Magpie.  But it's ITV that is doing its duty by showing highlights of the Ashes to non payers of the Murdoch tax.  10pm on ITV4.  God bless them. 

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