Incredibly Profitable League

– I’m officially getting behind the Royal Bangalore Challengers. I didn’t really follow the IPL last year, so no doubt someone’s going to tell me they’re the Yankees or  Man Utd of the competition, but if Jesse and Ross are playing, that’s good enough for me.

– Still, there were no early Black Cap fire works this year. Oram top scored for the Kiwis with eight, while Jesse and Taylor got ducks. Jake did do a great job with the dog, though.

– JRod has kindly previewed all the teams so I didn’t have to – here’s his Royals run-down.

–’s IPL t-shirts are still available and taking up valuable hall space I usually use for trips to the loo and emergency exits and that. Buy Now.

Everybody loves Kev

There’s been precious little Kevin Keegan in these parts lately. I’m putting that right with a bit of gibberish from the lengthy KK page on my new favorite site, Danger Here. Bear  in mind he’s being questioned about the transfer window:

“Well, that’s like asking me who is on my Christmas card list. I sit down with the wife and I say ‘Did they send us one last year or this year’, and if they haven’t we rip the name up and throw it in the bin. But then, a couple of days after Christmas the card might arrive late so we do a card for them on the 28th and date it the 22nd and send it off and hope they don’t notice…I haven’t a clue what I’m talking about.”

Imagine him and Stu Wilson having a chat. Here’s Kev on a bike:

Links on Friday

He’s thirteen, well done” – I’m downgrading my opinion of Michael Owen from boring to utter twat

Vijay Singh makes the most incredible ‘I’m going to go ahead and skip this one across the lake’ hole in one EVER, then wanders off

Everyone loves playing Jenga at the beach, but these nerds have added some impressive firepower

Ace Hockey goal – never thought I’d write those words, team

KP’s coming home

Laurence Booth summarises just what Kevin Pieterson is up against in the South African IPL jaunt.

In the two weeks he’s there he’ll match wits with ex-best mate Shane Warne and his England team-mate / power-struggle nemesis Andrew Fintoff, and will captain Boucher and Kallis, who’d probably rather KP played international Cricket for South Africa.

Add in that the expat is as popular as a punch in the nuts in the Republic, where crowds aren’t renowned for subtlety (nice work Richie, BTW). He’s up against it – his planned jaunt through the exotic sub continent, before collecting US $1.55M has a very different look now, not that it will bother this supremely confident Cricketer. It’s a little known fact (to me, anyway. Ahem) that Pieterson has only three 5os from 29 attempts in T20, a poor return for a guy who’s made for the Ramones form of the game. He should do better than that at home. Hayden Roulston arse coverage

Check out this clip at 1’50 – that’s Hayden Roulston‘s arse. He had a bad fall on the cobbles during the weekend’s Paris-Roubaix race and Did Not Finish.

The clip gives you a good idea of Paris-Roubaix, or The Hell Of The North’s fairly frickin insane racing style – when it rains, you get a kind of Mad Max / muddy Galstonbury raver hybrid on bikes. Riders have to cope with several cobbled sections, guaranteed to shake bikes and riders’ fillings loose. This prompts much discussion on modifying sleek road machines to take cobble-related punishment.

Further Hayden Roulston arse coverage from the Belgium Knee Warmers blog:

No-one knows quite where to look, eh?

Stuff the details

Check out this page on, video with a massive white space underneath. Headline on the Stuff Sport homepage is ‘Nasty Rugby Fight’ (they left out the !!1! LOL! bit).

ScreenHunter_01 Apr. 14 09.27

Is it:

A. A placeholder page, with little details like the where, when, teams involved and outcomes of the fight to follow soon?

B. A teaser for a damming expose of violence in sport in general and those imported from the west in particular and what this means for post-communist society in Eastern Europe?

C. A flimsy excuse to share video of a sweet fight?

Moles’ final day plan: concentration, application and a really big hose

SRNZPA:  Facing with three sessions to bat with six wickets remaining, optimistic Black Caps coach Andy Moles’ strategy is simple: “We’ve got everything we need – the players, the attitude, and a couple of fire trucks. You can’t write us off just yet.”

Should his middle order struggle early and expose the tail, Moles is confident torrents and torrents of water will give the Indians something to think about. “Coming from a hot climate, their bowlers will struggle with a high pressure hose, possibly two, hitting them square in the chest. I’d say the run ups will get rather treacherous, too.”

With pride on the line and Ross Taylor, on 69* overnight, the last recognised batsman, the Indian team will run out this morning with fire crews on standby, watching their every move. “A couple of caterers have given up their spot pitch side for some heavy duty fire appliances. The team can take heart that a simple phone call will put the square under a foot of water in three or four minutes.”

Basin day two report

Saturday at the Basin may turn out to be the most blogged about day ever, with Hadyn, and Ben doing write ups, and Robyn filing a n00b report. Here’s how my day went.


Day one went fantastic for the Black Caps, who dismantled India’s star studded batting order like a 21st marquee due back at midday. The sun shone, and we had one more wicket to get at the close before getting stuck into the (big) total.

Day two. I walked into the Basin for the first time ever just after 12. After saying g’day to Graeme and son, and holding my breath through the field of bad vibes and disturbing weirdness that surrounds Sonny Shaw (don’t explore that site at work, team), Hadyn and I, and soon Dan were parked up on the bank. For those of us to used to ramming our knees behind a plastic Eden Park seat, stretching out on the grass was a real treat. The Basin Reserve is a fantastic park, the  elevated view from the requisite down-the-ground angle gives a great perspective.

Then we started watching Cricket, possibly the down point of the day. To me, the crisp (I’m being nice) breeze made it tough to bat, but just as tough to bowl in, especially into into the breeze. Ross Taylor was quietly playing to the conditions, waiting for bad ones and putting them away with sweetly timed on and off drives. No-one else wanted to do that, and our top order used the walk from the sheds to the pitch to the sheds again like a revolving door.

Ryder was more interested in staging a one man outlandish helmet exhibition than batting, much to the disgust of bloggers staying up late in the UK, and was soon back in the sheds, followed by pretty much everyone else. It was depressing, slow going – this Indian team may be full of rock stars, but they fuck around between balls and overs like Keith Richards trying to change a string. The over rate was disgraceful, and made the day tough going at times.

The tail enders weren’t about to let the crowd turn blue without getting their money’s worth, though. Every blogger’s favorite Ian O’Brien got his highest test score in front of his home crowd, while Chris Martin, yes, ‘Learn to Bat‘ Chris Martin hit Harbhajan back over his head for four. Good on him.

The final potential high point of the day was watching Sehwag knock it around, but turned to custard as Martin claimed him after only a couple of token swipes. From then it was shut up shop time until, I admit, we sneaked off early with beer and a heater top on the list.

It was one of those days that add to the purists’ sense of worthiness, but despite that, I thoroughly enjoyed it. The great company of all the above, plus Fraser and Robyn, a couple of beers and great conversation made a challenging day’s play for Black Caps fans go by too fast. I was hugely impressed by the Basin, especially the ‘let everyone run around at the lunch break and smack balls at each other’ policy, and can’t wait to come back.

I have to note that I arrived in the capital Friday to a stunning day and extremely kind welcome from the Wellington digerati. I’m not sure if it’s the strong coffee or daily caviler laughing in the face of earthquake-induced certain doom, but the capital has easily the warmest web / community spirit around – the locals were incredibly welcoming of Auckland based half-arsed sports bloggers blowing in for the weekend. I even got free beer in classy surroundings. Ta.

I can’t stress enough the *awesomeness* of meeting up with the *actual people* we’re reading / writing to / twittering with over the intertubes. Let’s not forget it’s about connecting with people – there doesn’t always need to be a modem involved, eh.