Book review: The year of the balls 2008: a cricket disrespective

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I was lucky enough to win a copy of The year of the balls 2008: a cricket disrespective by Jrod of Cricket with Balls, with my 200 words. Here’s what I thought:

2008 was the year of Australia v India (twice), England v New Zealand (twice), South Africa in England, the IPL and South Africa in Australia. It was also the year of Sehwagology, Nice Bryce, Dirty Dirk, the Crab and mental images of the world’s top Cricketers shagging that prove very difficult to shift once you’ve read them.

Cricket With Balls’ 2008 blog posts have had a shit, shower and shave and been published in a book, an honest to goodness read on the bus, in bed and on the dunny book. Reading a book is totally different to reading the internet; you can take it in slowly and re-read each zinger without wondering what’s happening on Wikipeida and diving off to the next tab, comment or tweet.

If you read CWB, you’ll be familiar with JRod, the Rasputin of Cricket bloggers’ style. Cricket’s English traditions, Sub continent fervor, Aussie hard-nosed-ness, Kiwi niceness, West Indian cool and South African boring work ethic is great raw material for writing, and JRod’s blog combines a very Australian ear for a dirty joke, Lester Bangs’ passion, Peter Cook’s refusal to suffer fools and Richie Benaud’s love and respect for the game. You laugh a lot reading this 2008 Disrespective, but often feel like you could use a shower and vigorous scrub afterwards. Here’s a taste:

Sehwagology scripture: SEVEN – ‘You shall not commit quick singles’

Andrew Symonds goes AWOL: Symonds has broken clause 17.67a, ‘Drinking any alcohol is fine, but you cannot drinking in any bar that thinks Bundy and Coke is a cocktail.

Jaques Kallis having sex: Jaques will the enter the bed, still under the covers and position himself on top of you, being careful not to touch you in any erotic way.

On Stephen Fleming retiring: …he captained like a mad scientist, rather than the McDonald’s managers most captains are. Without guys like Flaming, Cricket would be stuck in the 1800s and we’d all be bored shitless.

CWB’s 2008 Disrespective is passionate, constructive, knowledgeable (I learned loads about leg spin. And a few new swear words) and, most importantly, realises that to take sport too seriously is to miss the point. As a blogger, reading an actual paper and cover physical book someone’s had the balls (ahem) to go out and make is deeply inspiring stuff. I think it’s fair to say Cricket With Balls has has improved Cricket. Simple as that, and a nobler achievement for a Cricket blog I cannot imagine.

Well done. Great nut. Onya. Support a guy who’s doing what you wish you could do. Buy a copy, don’t just win one.

Author: Richard Irvine

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