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Writing22nd December 2010

It looks like there could be changes to the starting XI at the MCG judging by the request for AJ and myself to join Jimmy in his morning sledging practice – that’s ten minutes of Clockwork Orange style behaviour-modification as your eyelids are held back forcing you to view disturbing images of Mitchell Johnson’s tattoo’s and Mr Cricket’s forced smile, followed by ten minutes listening to Derek and Clive Get the Horn, then the all important Rorschach inkblot test to see if it’s all come together. It’s an intense process; dark, brooding, potentially psychologically damaging; pretty much how you’d imagine sex with Grace Jones, really.

In the end I was excused the training after my expletive ridden rant at the pointlessness of the entire exercise gained me an automatic pass.

That’s the thing about Yorkshiremen. We always call a **** a ****. And, given the opportunity on Sunday, call Mitchell Johnson a tattooed ****** **** of a ***** who enjoys **** ******** **** with a **** ***** ********** **** until the end starts to tapper.

You can’t train skills like those; you need to be born with them.

The afternoon turned out to be more relaxing, with an open discussion within the squad about how to approach the upcoming test. Admittedly tempers did start to fray with Alistair towards the end as he’s still having difficulty understanding why the Boxing day test isn’t pre-recorded like the Christmas Question of Sport special he appeared on a couple of years ago.

Alistair’s going to be England’s next captain. Comforting thought, that.