Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rain rains McCullum McCullums

It it’s all to be expected, really.

As people always say at this time of year, it was “old-fashioned” cricket. People say this because it would have been so long since they watched a proper match that rubbishy one-day cricket has become the norm.

A Kiwi on the radio just said that it was a “technical” day of cricket. He went on to justify this remark. It didn’t make any sense.

I often find that with New Zealanders.

Phil Tufnell is on now. I can’t say things are getting more coherent. He’s like Britain’s honorary little Kiwi.

Anyway, Brenda McCullum was told to behave and bat as if he cared what the bowlers thought of him. He played properly to reach fifty: letting balls go; nurdling singles. He did let go a little after he reached his half-century, but he has long promised to bring a limited overs approach to test cricket.

The New Zealand wise heads, fearing that this might be a bit too mad for them, promoted him up to number five, in an attempt to impose responsibility on the scamp.

The management of your Good Player in small teams is an interesting affair. In rugby, your strategy is simple: give the ball to the big bloke. It usually works out fine.

But in cricket, the situation is a little more complex. You have to consider countless variables. What position should he hold? Who should come in with him? How should he play?

For England, we have long agonised over KP. Should he come in at three? Should he slow down? Should he speed up? He should certainly shut up.

Fortunately, these problems melted away when England successfully imbued Pietersen with our losing ways. He’s one of us now.

New Zealanders are the experts at managing modest resources. Given the size of their country, you wonder how they produce a test standard team at all. But when they do get good players, they seem to know how to squeeze the best out of them.




Jrod said...

Do you think Fleming and tuffers ever shared a joint?

Miss Field said...

Why do you call him Brenda? Don't you like him?

I wonder if it's called old-fashioned because you have no lights. That's soo lame. Yes, that's right, soo lame.

Samir Chopra said...

JRod: They probably did, and never asked me if I wanted any.