Wednesday, June 20, 2007

ECB spills the sour beans

I have been trying to squeeze information out of a faceless ECB bureaucrat over the last few months. Partly about the captaincy situation, but chiefly to badger them to accept the logic of the Matthew Hoggard for Captain campaign.

At the announcement of the ODI vacancy, I naturally upped the ante and insisted on Hoggy’s promotion. I hoped you played your part, too. The response was not good. Sadly, I can officially provide an off-the-record leak and announce that Matthew Hoggard will not be the next England one-day captain.

This is a bitter blow to all those who believe in truth and justice. Therefore, in the best tradition of shamelessly abusing your position of trust, I will publish the entire email correspondence between myself and the ECB lackey. Like most of humanity, I doubt the faceless bureaucrat reads my blog, so I shan’t be at risk of being sued. You might, though, for reading it.

Me: Dear ECB,

Please could you appoint Matthew Hoggard as England's next captain. I think he's really good, and like his hair. I also think he's good at bowling.

Kind regards,

The Atheist

P.S. Would it also be possible if you could make Monty Panesar captain, too?

He: Dear The Atheist,

Hmm, don't think we can make everyone captain. Sure Matthew would appreciate the compliment though!

Kind regards,

Faceless Bureaucrat

Me: Oh yes. I didn't think about that. Well. How about making Matthew Hoggard captain on some days, and Monty Panesar captain on others. Like they do in the army. Hope this helps.

He: Think we might stick with one, hopefully fit, captain for the duration!

Me: OK - But will you promise, when this one falls over his slippers, you will make Matthew Hoggard captain?

He: not my decision, which everyone will be glad to hear! enjoy the summer's cricket

Me: OK. Who do I need to contact to secure this promise?

He: Sorry, The Atheist. no-one is going to promise you that we're going to make Matthew Hoggard captain, or anyone else. Michael Vaughan is England captain. Andrew Strauss is captain for this Test, and Michael will hopefully return next week.

Me: So, you are saying I need to make a case somewhere? That makes sense. I'm a tax-payer, and my taxes go into the England team, so I should have a say in it. That's democracy: no taxation without representation. Who should I talk to state my case? Or should I present a petition?

He: to resolve this one finally; it's a decision taken by the England Selectors, appointed by the ECB Board to select the England team. It's not a democratic decision at all

Some time passes here. I try to use lying to get my way.

Me: Seeing as Hoggard is fit again, will you appoint him as captain? I heard that Vaughan has a tummy bug.

He: Hello. No. Michael Vaughan is captain for the foreseeable future

A little later, Vaughan announces his stepping down from the ODI captaincy. My big chance to make the case for Hoggy. Clearly is it is water-tight.

Me: Now the time is ripe. The moment is here. Surely, the ECB must appoint their most experienced campaigner to the newly available captaincy? Surely, now is the time for Matthew Hoggard?

I have thought long and hard about this. There is no possible reason you could give me that would convince me that Hoggy is not the man for the job. He is a perfect candidate; it makes your life easier; and his leadership will win you lots of games. Even the World Cup. You are lucky that this is going to be a simple decision. There's no contest.
I would be willing to give you advice on a permanent consultancy basis, if would prefer to have my expertise on tap? I could be like Allan Donald. Only cheaper. And better.

He: Thanks for the offer. Think we'll stick with Allan Donald for bowling consultancy for now! New ODI skipper and squad will be announced on Friday morning on the site

Me: Great. So, can you confirm Hoggy's promotion? I promise not to leak it. It'll just be our little secret.

He: Think you may be disappointed on that front.

What a blow! A Sad day. A sad day for us all.


Cricket Coaching and Fitness - David Hinchliffe said...

I know this is unrelated to matthew hoggard as england captain, but would you like to do a post on Twenty20 cricket?

I'll putting some together on my blog. If so, drop me a mail so I can give you the details, it david at harrowdrive dot com

oh and erm, hoggy for Twenty20 captain!

Roberto said...

Your persistence is admirable, I'm sure it will pay off one day.

The Atheist said...

I wil have my day. Hoggy will be king.

David, OK, I will send you an email. I'm not really sure what you're on about, though.

Blue and Brown said...

We received similarly short shrift during our 'Ian Austin for Emperor of Earth' campaign back in 1999.