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7th December 2010

The pride. The passion. The patriotism. Does anything encapsulate sporting rivalry quite like Ian Botham and Ian Chappell brawling in a car park?

It’s the poetic ballet of middle-age alfresco belligerence. Chappell trying to punch underarm, as per family tradition. The chip on his shoulder wobbling frantically. Botham – chest full of testosterone, stomach full of Pinot Grigio and three shredded wheat – parries. Fellow commentators attempt to pull them apart. Gower shrieks out, “Leave him, Ian, he’s not worth it”.

God, why did I have to miss that for our post victory celebrations? All we did was sit around getting drunk while Colly watched the Dexter Season 3 box set in his undercrackers.

At least the morning brought some excitement. Six for Sixty-Six. No wonder the Aussie batsmen were walking out like the undead. This was their Amityville. With the giant burger stuffed face of Shane Warne the ghost of cricket past haunting them from the sidescreen advertisements.

Of course the big news to come out of the game for me is the abdominal injury to Broady, which opens the door to a place in the Test team. The upcoming match against Victoria is now being billed as a bowl off between myself, AJ and Twiggy. The three of us being medical marvels having somehow stayed fit despite not being sent on the strength and conditioning course that’s turned Stuart into a highly tuned Adonis who currently has trouble bending over, laughing or giving a bowel movement the hurry up.

Tremlett is the current favourite to replace Stuart in the side, although judging by his past record it’s only a matter of time before he turns his ankle over running away from a spider. So, between me and AJ then. That should calm Chappell down a bit. Likes his Yorkies does Ian. I couldn’t believe his commentating on my 80 not out in the Champions Trophy semi. He was practically drooling. Girlfriend didn’t like it one bit; said she was a cheesy wah-wah guitar soundtrack away from changing her Facebook relationship status.

Oh well, back downstairs to the celebrations. I can only pray Straussy’s not brought out his travel Pictionary again. Monty’s attempt to draw Two Mules for Sister Sarah the other night is one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever seen. And I come from Pontefract.