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Blog: It's Just Not Cricket

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In general, Cricket is a sport that I am Totally Fine With. There was only one time in my life when I actively watched it, during the recording of WE VALIDATE!, when we'd take it in turns to watch a bit of The Ashes whenever we weren't needed either in the studio or building sandcastles.This was very enjoyable, but I've never really felt an urge to engage further and am more than happy for it to exist without me.

I played cricket at school and, like rugby, came to dislike it intensely. However, unlike Rugby, I later came to understand what other people see in it - I thought the point of cricket was the actual playing of it, with the running backwards and forwards and hitting balls etc etc, but I eventually realised that that's just an excuse for EITHER sitting around for a whole afternoon getting drunk and talking to your friends OR listening to silly old twits talk about it on the radio amusingly and remembering FACTS.

These are clearly all activities which I am TOTALLY behind and fully support anybody's right to pursue. However, I have already made lifestyle choices which satisfy my needs for all of the above, and so I am happy to leave cricket to others. I understand enough to get references to it if I have to, and I own a Duckworth Lewis Method album, and so until now I have been confident that I would never have the need to log an opinion re. cricket in the public domain.

UNTIL NOW.

Flipping heck, this The Hundred business has RIGHT wound me up. For those who don't know it's basically a way of making cricket fit into less than the eighteen months it takes to play Test Cricket so they can show it on telly wit adverts. The way it works is that you get 100 goes at bowling each, and then there are various fiddly bits to keep THE MATHS fairly simple (which seems to be against the whole point of cricket to me). It seems daft when Twenty20 already exists to do the same thing, but if that's what television stations want to spend their money on then that's fine with me, as long as they don't spend so much that they can't make MY telly shows anymore. Live And Let Watch Game of Thrones Prequels is very much my motto.

HOWEVER, the thing that has wound me up about it is the bloody "TEAMS" what they have invented. I was watching the telly news the other night and the News Person was going on about "The Oval Invincibles" which he then shortened to "The Invincibles" as if that was SOMEHOW A THING. It's a totally made up non-existent BRANDING exercise to bring together a bunch of entirely unrelated highly paid sportspeople so they can play against another BRAND of other similar sportspeople. And YES YES I AM AWARE that one could describe ALL modern professional sports teams like this, but the point is that THOSE brands are rooted in history and have been around for AGES. When I go to see Peterborough United (when I CAN get to see them that is - I was prevented from going on Tuesday due to BROKEN TRAINS and it made me SAD) it is because of an entire LIFE of going to see them, the associated family traditions of doing the same, the many memories, and of course the various delightful TYPES I see in the PUB beforehand who have also gone for similar lengths of time. It's lovely!

This is clearly very much not the case with "Trent Rockets", which did not EXIST until a couple of years ago. Maybe in 20 years time, if the 100 thing carries on, there will be people in Nottingham who bear a local grudge against their deadly rivals "Birmingham Phoenix" and sing songs of their disdain at every match, possibly getting into a mild RUCKUS when "South Eastern Conglomerate" come to play. But for now it seems utterly ridiculous when I see clips on telly of people wearing MERCHANDISE KITS and getting terribly excited about a team that DOES NOT REALLY EXIST! AT ALL!

Why are they doing it? This is The United Kingdom Of Lots Of Sports Teams, you can't MOVE without tripping over a hockey squad or a lacrosse team or any one of the 17,000,000 clubs in the Infinite Pyramid Of Football, so why on earth would you want or even NEED to go to The Hundred as an excuse to drink beer and shout when there are so many other options? And if it really MUST happen, could they not have come up with better names? They're all called "Superchargers" or "Spirit" or "Fire" as if they were all thought up by competitors on THE APPRENTICE. The Hundred! If you really MUST do this thing, at least be brave and call the teams PROPER business names like "Essex Mandatory Training" or "Wiltshire Mid-Year Appraisal".

I wouldn't mind so much if Telly Sports People weren't so ruddy JOVIAL about it. "Oh, that's just SO Middlesbrough Fire Drill!" they say, or "If it was going to happen to anybody, it had to be Yorkshire Broken Photocopier!" It's time we all stood up and refused to engage with this at all, and forced the telly to focus on PROPER sports. Like DARTS! or WRESTLING!

posted 18/8/2022 by MJ Hibbett

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Comments:

Go crisps!
posted 18/8/2022 by Owl Eveleigh

One of the tream IS called Brave. Does that help?
posted 18/8/2022 by Cat Eveleigh

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