Monday, 27 December 2010

All Things Must Pass


  1. Nice to hear you are going to the cricket at the SCG. It should be a pleasant time and perhaps there will be a changing of the guard.
    Today I feel happy for English fans like Mick Jagger who must have enjoyed the past few days. My eyes were averted having a party to attend with Quyen's vietnamese overseas students' brigade and having given up watching the stuff.
    I saw a number of games at the Gabba as my dad was a member of the BCG Trust and he also had a guest's badge so I could stumble into the Member's stand quite often.
    (Some friends and I also managed to build a cricket ground for the Bundamba Strollers which was essentially the miners' cricket club in Ipswich. A gigantic machine rumbled out of the mine and scalloped out an oval and dug out the two metre deep hole for the pitch to be laid into and then rumbled back down into the mine in a single day.)
    As for the game itself I had no aptitude for it being essentially ill co-ordinated and clumsy and schooled in golf and football and running rather that crick. I did, however, sacrifice myself to its altar for seven long seasons as a player in the senior ranks playing in prisons and cow paddocks round Ipswich and beyond with the Strollers. I never really knew what happened to the ball from the time it was held in the bowler's had till the time it found the wicket keeper's glove. And I think that bastard Andy Bichel as a 15 year old managed to bowl out our side for about 13 runs and also managed to bang me on the inside of the knee handing me a life-time wound.
    From the stands I had the pleasure of seeing one of Greg Mathew's last games for New South Wales when he was captain and after he had recovered from his awful head injury having being head rammed against a wall by some drunken hooligans. He pIaced himself at silly mid on with Border batting but retreated after Border skittled with some cracking shots designed soley to kneecap his adversary.
    I saw a lot of Alan Border saving the Australian side time and time again and I remember my dad's glee when a New South Welshman called Thommo who had had 21 jobs in his short working life was snaffled to play for the Sunshine State; employment would be found. Cive Lloyd clubbing the ball in the middle of the bat at the Gabba was a pleasure to behold. Wes Hall rolling in from the boundary another indelible image. Warne paralyzing the Pakistanis with a bag of about three wickets at a cost of half a dozen runs on a steamy Gabba morning's session was also something to savour. Oh cricket a sunlit courtyard in the city of history.
    Apart from that you must understand that I hate cricket; a cruel and vicious game where voodooists conspire to confound athletes.
    I remember once being a guest player in an aboriginal side (I was invited to play by the actor Billy Macpherson). I was caught on the rainforest boundary in a field on Tamborine Mountain after the first on drive of my career connected. I hate cricket.
    Have a lovely time at the game.
    PS I'll try to find a little note I wrote about Border's last innings.
    I remember when he was commentating with Michael Holding and Lara was batting and Lara hit a magnificent square cut. Holding said "Great shot! That reminded me of you in your hey day Alan!" to which Border replied "I wish."
    I think Border's great gift was his judgement and knowledge of his limitations. I believe when the young gun McGrath opened the bowling for the first time with Border at crease McGrath appealed for a catch. The ever attentive Border parried the appeal by walking to garden a spot in the middle of the pitch with the words "Ya feeling lucky Big Fellah?"

  2. I'm sure you're forgetting a fine season in the ACT Poets' Eleven, captained by that strapping figure of a man, Paul Brosgarth