Posts Tagged ‘Cricket Australia’

Goutham Chakravarthi

Australia honours Sehwag with the title of Swami

“The best way to play bowlers is go after them. Intimidate them, shake them up, beat them up. All with a smile. Tell the bowler that you are after his dog, money, future and see him wilt and cry,” said Sehwag to a secretly arranged gathering by his ardent supporter Ian Chappell outside Manuka Oval in Canberra late on Thursday. Ian’s brother Greg, famously known to have pushed Sehwag into moving to Japan to try his luck in becoming a sumo wrestler, was seen scribbling down furiously on his notepad ahead of the next week’s batting clinic for the Australian Test batsmen.

A host of former Australian players and current Test stars had made themselves available on the occasion to pick on the genial Indian’s brains. Sehwag, known to be honest with his talk, was giving a lecture on batting following his disciple David Warner’s request that he address the rest of the domestic bashers in Australia before the BBL and see if Sehwag could inspire them into becoming Test batsmen.

“Footwork is an Australian obsession. Quick, decisive feet movement are associated with greatness in your country. In my country, we associate quick feet movement with dancers. So is fitness and preparation,” said Sehwag and in an impromptu jig sat in a wheelchair and faced the bowling of the young quickie Josh Hazelwood and hit him out of the ground much to the astonishment of the gathering. Sehwag continued to biff the deliveries bowled from a bowling machine for a good 15 minutes and finished with a square driven six that went out of the practicing facility and into the ground where Indians were playing the warm-up match and hit Ishant Sharma on his boot injuring him and forcing him to limp off the field putting him in doubt for the Boxing Day Test.

Unconvinced by Sehwag’s methods, Greg Chappell immediately challenged Sehwag to face the greats of the past in a wheel chair and produced the latest version of ProBatter – ProBatter 2.0 – that not only simulates the bowling action and deliveries and speeds of modern bowlers, but of all those who have played the game – including the French maid Adèle who is claimed to have first invented bowling in 1149 A.D. “Fat boy, smacking Josh Hazelwood is an easy task as is flogging this machine. See if you can flog Ponsford, Old, Larwood, Barnes among others,” challenged Greg Chappell.

“Are they your nannies? Never heard of them,” said Sehwag even as the history-steeped gathering let out a collective gasp. In true Indian style, Sehwag called up his mom to seek her blessings (karlo duniya muththi mein) and set out on a rampage against the wild bearded 19th century Englishmen first.

Adjusting to the various chuckers of the time, Sehwag tore into them. One of them, a certain Lord H.R.E Muleman had his shin battered and ProBatter 2.0 had to be retired hurt for a while before Clarrie Grimmett and Bill O’Rielly were scared away by Sehwag who smote them from wide off the stumps to way over square-leg and from leg-stump to square over the point boundaries. In three minutes, Sehwag reduced the superstars from early 20th century to bowling negative lines for the first time in their real and virtual lives combined. Soon enough Larwood was sent back to the mines, as were Old and Trueman. Sehwag even had to battle the 19th century English round armers and the 1910s Aussie quickies bowling with the then slightly bigger sized cricket ball. The challenge ended when Lilliee was badly hurt on his follow through as a Sehwag straight drive caught him on his mouth even as Bill Lawry called him “you beauty” from among the cheering audience.

By the time Sehwag was done he had not only battered ProBatter 2.0, he had won over the entire Australian gathering who were reported to have been chanting “maar veeru maar…. aur maar” (hit them Viru, beat them up!) as if in a trance. With tears in his eyes, Richie Benaud said he had seen many batsmen in his lifetime, but never anyone who decoded batting like Sehwag. Deeply moved by the sagacious Sehwag’s knowledge of batting, he said, “His simplicity is astounding as his is knowledge of the game. I always thought the patch on his head was just a bald spot. I have now realized that it was the halo of an all knowing superior being. He is god to me. I have just received confirmation from the prime minister’s office that the Australian government will honour Sehwag with the title of a Swami.”

Among raucous applause Sehwag was honoured with the title of a swami by the Australian prime minister Julia Gillard in Canberra on Friday. The title was unanimously chosen by the ProBatter 2.0 bowlers who suffered his wrath the previous day. The gave him the tile of Engala Vittrungasaami (please leave us alone, swami!).

Goutham Chakravarthi

Cricket Australia’s decision to rotate players to ensure that there is a good pool of players available at any time to mitigate problems arising out of injuries, players falling out on issues of when to sing the team song and when to pop a beer. The new rotation policy looks beyond mere player rotation and looks at rotating most things associated with Australian cricket to give itself a wider pool to choose from.

It is learnt that Micky Arthur, the new Australian coach, wants the team to try a new team song this time. Under the Southern Cross I Stand, the traditional team song has resulted in at least one team member falling out with the current captain. He said, “In order to have better options, I have proposed the latest internet rage pa pa pa paen Kolaveri song to be our new team song. Already, the team is hooked to it and cannot wait to sing it as a team. The strict rule is of course that we can sing as a group only after we win games. With the team desperate to sing it all the time, you can expect them to demolish the Kiwis swiftly in the first Test and sing the song.”

The proverbial fat lady who sings has appealed to Cricket Australia that they cannot sing the song as she has obtained the rights of singing the song for all sports. The news was received with broken hearts in the Australian dressing room. Pat Cummins, the new pace sensation, tweeted “We are absolutely devastated. We so much wanted it to be our team song. Looks like the fat lady has sung! we’ll fight her in court for the rights on this song.”

Australian players to sport boxing gloves to give them the extra punch.

Among other rotations to be part of their plan this Australian summer will be the rotation of batting gloves. As mark of respect to the Boxing day, all Australians will sport boxing gloves while batting. Justin Langer who used to box as part of his preparation has justified the move saying that this will give his batsmen the added punch and a sense of additional security while facing the menacing Indian quicks like Praveen Kumar. Langer also pointed out that the benefits included shooing away of close-in fielders against spinners. He said, “We have been found short playing good spin recently. Now this gives an option for the batsman to skip down and punch the short-leg or silly-point fielders while pretending to play a punchy stroke.”

“Hockey sticks and baseball bats will also be used on freehits in ODIs and T20 games,” said selector Rod Marsh. He reasoned, “It both confuses the opposition and also makes our players more versatile. Should some of them not cut it as successful cricketers, they can fancy becoming hockey drag-flickers and fancy Major League Baseball aspirations. It is a win-win situation through and through.”

Kiwis to perform Haka during the toss to distract the Australians

John Buchanan, the former Australian coach and the current Director of Cricket for New Zealand expressed admiration for such theories. He said, “I’m finally beginning to believe that they have got a hang of what I was trying to achieve in my time with them. Still, they can look to rotate captains or have multiple ones. They do rotate their spinners either by plan or accident. But as part of the Kiwi set-up now, we are well prepared to face any challenges the new Australian management will throw at us. We have tricks of our own too that we look to put to practice.”

When asked for specifics, Buchanan explained, “We want to carry some of our practices from our recently crowned rugby champions. You will see Ross Taylor and boys performing the Haka before the toss for one. Am sure they might throw puches with their boxing gloves and all, but we tackle and scrum better. That way get into them even before the game begins. You will also see the young quickie Trent Boult taking the art of bowling to the next level. You will see him perform a couple of cartwheels in his run-up before he delivers. It gives him the leverage to release the ball at any point in his cartwheel which means his release point ranges from a maximum height of 14 feet to a minimum height of 3 feet. He might have a career in circus once his cricketing days are over. He is that good.”

It is also being speculated that there could be rotation policy for the selectors and spectators too. And also for retirements. Pat Cummins is expected to announce his one-day retirement first before Haddin retires from dancing down the wickets to quicks and Ponting from playing the hook shot. Written press releases are expected on these lines before Thursday from the players to show their commitment to this new initiative.

Got a flair for Sketching? Think no more …

Posted: August 4, 2011 by thecognitivenomad in Cartoons
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Chandrasekhar Jayarama Krishnan

Head of Cricket, CouchExpert

4 August 2011

CouchExpert welcomes contributions from those who’ve got a flair for sketching. Even an image from your scribbling pad would do – as long as the idea is conveyed!

Also, if you have played a game of book cricket, don’t hesitate to publish your scores. The XI you’ve chosen becomes your opinion, and the scores they’ve made … well … their fate.

Project Shane: Hunt for the New Kid with the Golden Arm

Don’t forget The CouchExpert’s Golden Rule: You don’t have to be good, you just have to possess an opinion of your own!

NOTE:  The sample caricature is to exhibit the current abysmal standards of the existing caricaturist within (your’s truly). Hope this propels someone to oust me from this section for good!