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  1. scandi-noir tv series

    The original Killing from Denmark was superb, as was the political one Borgen.
  2. I will be in Bahrain for a few days in a week or so and wondered if any one has recommendations for decent cigar bars? Also are the airport duty free options worth checking or should I bring my own?
  3. the cricket debacle

    Exactly this. What was the point? Who is advising him? He is also not helped by his personality, he comes over as just false. The whole thing very strange and seemed to serve no purpose at all (unless it covered some legal obligations ?)
  4. the cricket debacle

    Am I the only one who found the Warner "press conference" bizarre?
  5. the cricket debacle

    The greatest series I have ever seen, even better for me than the 2005 ashes. Botham, Willis and Brearley were incredible and all this against an Aussie team that featured some of the finest cricketers ever. As a 16 year old watching the contest between Botham and Lilllee remains possibly my most enduring sporting moment. Whats interesting is that everyone remembers these as Botham's Ashes and rightly so but focus on the games he had with the bat at Headingley and Old Trafford (the Manchester innings by far the better, the one at Leeds was really just slogging that came off). For me his 5-11 in 14 overs in the 4th test at Edgbaston was the key, Aus needed only around 160 in the 4th innings to win and take a 1-2 lead in the series. Botham's bowling that innings turned the game and the series. Why did Walters not get picked?
  6. the cricket debacle

    You are right Ken. When I think about it the captain of Aus has almost always been their best/most consistent player with as you say a couple of notable exceptions. In England we have followers this trend in the last couple of decades with some disasterous results, not least Flintoff and KP (also who can forget the debarcle that was Bothams captaincy admittedly against an unbeatable WI team). At club level I captained a very young (and very short) Root in his first senior game. I asked him to bowl one over near the end of their innings so our quicks could change ends and the clown batsman laughed out loud and made it clear at the top of his voice how pleased he would be to pick up some easy runs at his expense (not in these exact words I assure you as it was Yorkshire league cricket). Needless to say Rooty’s first ball in senior cricket took the Neanderthals middle stump out of the ground. The pleasure I took in escorting the knuckledragger back to the hutch whilst vocally pointing out the age and height of the “little prick of a schoolboy” who had bowled him will stay with me forever
  7. the cricket debacle

    I suspect the hobbit Warner couldn’t reach Broad. I do know that Rooty is as decent, respectful and courteous a guy as you could wish to meet and has been since he was a little nipper, Broad on the other hand .... Im sure that giving him the captaincy has affected his conversion rate. I don’t get the theory that the best player should be captain, look at some of the great captains who were not the teams superstar A positive from this must be that Renshaw will get another crack at opening (and without the poison dwarf as his partner). Still baffelled by why he was dropped, looks a natural test 1 or 2.
  8. the cricket debacle

    Good read Ken, I agree with almost all you have written. The underam incident is a completely different matter, indeed when I heard the press conference the other day I was astonished to hear Smith state that the recent incident "goes against the spirit of the game"!!! What an idiot, it goes against the laws of the sport not the spirit you tool, the underarm delivery was indeed against the spirit of the game not (at that time) the laws. For me this showed that Smith whilst complicit is also simply a fool, its not uncommon for sportsmen in this day and age to grow up in a cosseted world where ability is all that matters and basic intelligence, common decency, empathy and understanding of real life is neither taught, valued or encouraged, just look at the raft of idiot footballers in the premier league (particularly many of the current and former English ones, Gerrard/Carragher/Rooney/Vardy et al). What I find most astonishing is that so quickly it has become apparent that Warner is at the root of the problem. CA know that this individual is (and has been) a constant bad apple throughout his career, that he has been tolerated and indeed been honored with the vice captaincy smacks of a weak board pandering to a star player (of course this is not unique to CA). Why did no-one have the balls to stand up and say enough is enough before it got to this stage. I have mentioned before that I know well Joe Root and the incident in the bar in Birmingham with Warner was something I heard about from a very close and trusted source and Warner was well our of order and all knew it at the time and effectively did nothing, you reap what you sow. The state of the game in general is suffering from incompetent leadership at all board levels in each country not just in Australia, from the corrupt BCCI, the shambles that is the West Indian Board and not forgetting the ECB who's chase for the £'s has meant that only those with satellite subscriptions can watch any England live games and the scheduling of this coming summer meaning no test matches will be played from 5th June-1st August, the middle of the summer when all the kids are on holiday. When they complain that test cricket is dying on its arse and that grass roots participation from kids is at its lowest level then they have themselves to blame, shame on you ECB! I think the traditions, history and nature of cricket in general have helped to a greater extent shelter the game from the win at all costs attitude of some of the other professional sports, yes it is a tough, uncompromising contest between teams who are paid to win. There will always be problem players, borderline practices, straining of the rules and its naive to think otherwise, but with better and stronger leadership from the top of all countries who play the game and a willingness to put cricket before the individual from the authorities I think the sport I love can still flourish. In this respect I applaud the actions of CA in terms of the punishments they have dealt out and I hope that they reflect on the cause of this issue to avoid a repeat. I hope also that the other governing boards get their acts together and start to put cricket first before politics, power and money, I'm hopeful but not overly optimistic.
  9. australia's most shameful day

    Could not agree more Ken, spineless is the best description. I am also really disappointed with Lehmann, I know people who where involved with him during his time here at Yorkshire and they spoke so highly of him not just as a player but as man. All very sad and disappointing.
  10. australia's most shameful day

    Looking from afar at this series it seems that something is not right with the team and management as a whole. For sure SA have not covered themselves in glory but the Aussies seem somehow out of control this tour. I blame Cricket Australia who I think have recently set a terrible example in a number of areas in the last few years. Smith as captain should rightly shoulder much of the blame, they are his team and play the game the way he guides them on and off the field, a brilliant run getter but a piss poor individual. The press conference was extraordinary, he clearly was sorry for getting caught not for breaking the law. He should have held up his hand and taken full responsibility, not throwing the young lad under the bus, with high office comes great responsibility, as a test captain he should behave as leader.
  11. Speaking of batsman what happened to Renshaw? (Actually he is another player from my club here in Yorkshire, he and Root played together as kids). He looked to me a natural test opener and a good fit alongside Warner at the top of the innings. If he was registered for England, as he could have been, I'm sure he would have been capable to do a job perhaps in the Cook role.
  12. I think it is fair to say that the rankings are a pretty good reflection of the top 5 right now. Smith is clearly in a golden patch where his recent dismissal for only 40 odd was seen as a positive result for England. I’m biased in that I was Root’s first captain in senior cricket and batted with him on quite a few occasions when he was a youngster and it was always clear he had some magic about him. With his first ball in senior cricket he took out the middle stump of some great oik who had given him some lip when I ask Joe to bowl. It gave me immense pleasure to escort said buffoon back to the pavilion with a few choice Yorkshire phrases I hope he still remembers. Part of the problem for Rooty is the same reason Anderson is so high in the bowling rankings. The pitches and conditions in the UK are so bowler friendly that not many batsmen can score big often, particularly in the second innings. Last year the Windies knocked off odd 300 odd at Leeds but that was a compete fluke. Normally in tests these days in the UK 200 is the max to chase in the last innings. It seems that Rootys conversion rate in the second innings is really poor but I think this is part of the problem. It’s also no coincidence that Kholi is not half the player in England he is when in the sub continent, that’s not to say he’s not a sublime player, he is for sure. This problem of playing in seaming bowler friendly conditions in the UK is for me the main reason why we will/are get thumped by the Aussies this series. The minute the ball stops moving off the pitch or in the air we are buggered.
  13. “Cigars with the Boss, is this the name of Ken’s dream TV show? I would watch it, would also suggest “Fish and Chips with Kylie”
  14. Thanks Rob, good timing for me as I’m flying there tomorrow for a few days. Will give some of these a whirl and report back.

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