Saturday, February 26, 2011

Cricket is More Fun When its Really Really Bad.

The ICC Cricket World Cup is serving up a parade of scintillating cricket. OK, that's a lie. The world cup is serving up its usual collection of wretched mismatches and wastes of time as the four or five nations in the world who actually play cricket take on another dozen or so who have more or less heard of the game. Scores are lopsided with matches tending to have results like Kenya all out for seventeen while chasing a total of nine hundred and thirty eight. I don't know who thinks this might be worth watching but I'm pretty sure they're wrong.

This year the subcontinent is hosting which essentially means India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh because Pakistan still has those embarrassing murder and terrorism issues. The grounds have been well tended and the crowds are gratifyingly large, at least according to the commentators who have used quite a bit of airtime telling us so. They do this probably because it is written into their contract that they have to but also I suspect because there is only so much one can say about a fifty year old, one legged South African expat who is touted as Baluchistan's strike bowler.

I love watching the world cup. It appeals to my sense of the ridiculous and also to my cruelty. Sitting in front of the television for several hours watching people who really aren't very good at cricket being crucified publicly by a bunch of people who are very good at cricket gives me a certain sadistic amusement. It's even better when you have the opportunity to see teams from two nations who have almost certainly never heard of cricket slugging it out to see which of them is going to come second last overall. I actually prefer this to watching a top quality match. It makes the occasional flicker of brilliance shine forth all the more brightly. One of my favourite cricket memories comes from the last world cup when I was privileged to see Bermudan star Dwayne Leverock hurl his twenty stone frame sideways to take a catch any cricketer would have proud of. Unfortunately tonight Pakistan are playing Sri Lanka. Two top quality teams in good form. I think I'll go to bed.

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