ashes 2006-07

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Shane Warne wins the Midwinter-Midwinter

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 9 2007, 12:43 pm

As I said on Friday, Shane Warne has wrapped up the 2006-07 Midwinter-Midwinter, the BoG award for this summer's Ashes series.

(BoG stands for Best on Ground, a more appropriate term I believe than MVP)

The Midwinter-Midwinter is not an Award, Trophy, Prize or such, it is simply the Midwinter-Midwinter. Named after one of the few cricketers to have played for both sides in Australia v England Test competition.

Eng-ger-land.... sigh

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 6 2007, 9:05 am

"The performance in the Ashes series has been a great disappointment and a number of lessons must be learned. This review will be comprehensive and broad ranging with the clear objective of regaining the Ashes in 2009 and significantly improving England's results in one-day international cricket in the next four year cycle."

- ECB chief executive David Collier, 5.1.07

Sydney Day Four: Goodbye, farewell, amen, and John did you drop something?

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 5 2007, 12:51 pm

Not since the Harlem Globetrotters last beat the Washington Generals has a foregone sporting conclusion been so rapturously and emotionally received by a sell-out crowd.

All over by lunchtime. Australia 5, England 0. Warne 708, McGrath 563, Langer 7698, Buchanan 68-11-10. Lots to reflect upon and digest, but that will have to wait for this evening.

Sydney Day Three: You did *what* for an MBE?

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 5 2007, 10:13 am

"You got an MBE, right? For scoring seven at the Oval? It's an embarrassment."

- Dr Shane Warne to Paul Collingwood MBE, Sydney Cricket Ground, 4.1.07.

Now we all know that the credibility of the British honours scheme is in tatters, but the decision to hand out gongs to the 2005 Ashes team a year ago was really a bit silly, something that I wrote about at the time.

Sydney Day Two: Warne's 1000th vegetable

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 4 2007, 8:42 pm

You have to hand it to the Murdoch comic books. One week they are celebrating - in advance - the Lord Of The RingsText Alert's 700th wicket, the next week they are celebrating his 1000th wicket. With that rarest or rarities, the full page colour liftout commemorative poster.

So what are we celebrating again? Shane Warne's 1000th international wicket. As in all "full internationals". Let me explain, by introducing the vegetable index (More about the fruit index later)

How much does a tabloid Urn?

Submitted by Rick Eyre on January 3 2007, 8:28 pm

Yes it's that time again, when the populists and the ignoramuses (or in John Howard's case, both) call for the urn holding the original "Ashes" to be kept in Australia. At least until England wins again.

As Malcolm Fraser used to say: Let me be quite plain.

The Urn is a fragile antique. It is not a trophy. It is not something to be carted around the SCG on the players' lap of honour. Nor waved from the upper deck of open-top buses, nor to be brandished (and possibly dropped) in airport lounges. Nor to be used as a vodka glass after a few dressing-room verses of "Under the Southern Cross I stand".

Melbourne Day Three: Numbers galore

Submitted by Rick Eyre on December 29 2006, 12:44 pm

190: The approximate number of overs left unplayed when the Melbourne Test finished two and a bit days early.

244,351: The cumulative number of spectators at the MCG over the three days of the Test, an average of 81450 per day. The record cumulative crowd for a Test in Australia was 350,534 for the MCG Test against England in 1936-37, a six-day Test thus averaging a mere 58422 per day.