Thursday, 30 November 2006

Advance Australia fair...

The best prescription for what ails the England cricket team is here, despite my doubts about the Daily Telegraph being a 'quality paper' (reference to blog entry entitled 'Hoist with one's own petard'). Fletcher and the team should follow EVERY word:

Mark Nicholas in the Telegraph

No more of this polite South England, public school cr**. It took a "Seth Efrikkan" - and one with Boer roots, at that, looking at his surname - to take the game to the Aussies. Kevin Pietersen stepped out to meet the Aussie bowling attack as if to say, "You want a piece of me? Come and get it." Finally, the fire of last summer blazed brightly, if only briefly. But it was *there*, at had been smouldering, not extinguished. Pietersen's 92 runs in a match where England batters were dropping faster than swimmers in "Jaws" is nothing to sneeze at, and shows a scrappiness and strength beneath the flamboyancy that makes me glad he's with us, and has me looking forward to watching his fledgling career unfold. KP, bottle that spirit and pour it over your teammates - now!

Come on, England. You're in the country whose national motto is "Give blood. Play rugby." They invented Aussie rules. Do you really expect a gentleman's game? Do me a favour.The Aussies respect nothing more than grit, raw passion, straightforwardness and resilience. Show them that, win or lose the toss, and we'll have a series worthy of last summer. Show them indecision, defensiveness and caution and you'll be taken apart faster than one of the swimmers in "Jaws" - except it won't be as painless.

We need passion, cojones and guile in equal measure...Captain Flintoff, you need to know the Aussie batsmen and adjust field placements accordingly - frustrate them and they'll make mistakes. Don't depend solely on your bowling. Now let's get out there and kick some Aussie a***. Let's turn "Advance Australia Fair" into "RETREAT, Australia - BEWARE!"

The lion does NOT sleep tonight.

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