10 Top tips on how to improve the Australian cricket team – from a Pom

Taken by me at the WACA in Perth the day that ...

Happy days could be here again (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Watching the current Australian cricket team has been an uncomfortable experience. Yes, I’ve enjoyed the results, but as an England cricket fan since the early 1990’s I’ve been having flashbacks to those dismal times. You see, unlike some England fans I don’t like seeing Australia be humiliated, in the same way as most people who have been waterboarded wouldn’t want it to be inflicted on anyone else. I’ve been there and it is just of painful. So in a spirit of solidarity I’ve come up with a few top tips that could help Australia turn the corner. If you’re reading this, Boof, feel free to use any with my compliments.

1 Give each player a stopwatch showing how many days, hours and minutes play are left
The game lasts five days. I know you are playing in England, but this is not a normal English summer; rain is unlikely to stop play (well, you’re in Manchester and Durham for the next two tests so I may be speaking too soon). You don’t have the openers with the skill to force the pace against this English bowling unit, so bat patiently and hope they blow themselves out.

2 Reverse the batting order
I don’t have the stats, but I’m sure the lower order have either out scored or come close to out scoring the top six. Why not let them open? It may sound a little strange, but you could encourage Shane Watson to increase his conversion rate by bringing him in at no.11, point out Agar, and tell him if he fancies that young squirt’s world record score.

3 Clone Ryan Harris
He’s the one bowler that has the English batsman worried and isn’t a vegetarian. You need a few more of him. Just remember to add extra calcium to strengthen those bones.

4 Treat the Umpires to laser eye surgery
A lot of people have moaned about DRS, or about Stuart Broad not walking, but the real problem has been the umpire team’s myopia. Us England fans felt the sting early on but there have been some howlers that have gone against you guys over the past few days. Why not treat the umps to laser eye surgery. Apparently it only costs £600 per eye – according to spam mail. It would be £5000 well spent.

5 Bring in some South Africans
It worked for us and as far as I know, your new citizenship laws are practically begging you to do so (while at the same time basically writing off the next generation of home grown talent – but what’s a disenfranchised generation compared to a chance of winning.)

6 Spike Jimmy Anderson’s and Graeme Swann‘s drinks
It’s desperate, but you can’t tell me that all those players who come down with Dehli belly on a tour of India are by accident. Admittedly we still have Onions, Tremlett and an angry Finn waiting for a chance and that Joe Root is a bit handy, but it could work.

7 Write off this Ashes and start training camps back home
It looks like this Ashes series is beyond rescuing, but you could have revenge within a few months. All you need to do is put all the toughest, spunkiest young players in a camp, feed them raw steaks coated in Vegemite, and play them tapes of ex-pro commentators who never got close to winning and Ashes series looking smug and basking in the reflected glory of their modern counterparts. Do that for six months and it could be carnage.

8 Tell Shane Watson to place his front leg so his bat can come around it
How many times is Shan Watson going to play beautifully only to be out LBW in his mid-twenties. Maybe you could wire up his box so that every time the coaching staff catch him planting his foot straight in front of the stumps to an in swinger, they could give him a little shock as a reminder to never do it again.

9 Know any Indian bookmakers?
It’s worth a try

And if all else fails

An Australian Ashes winner?

An Australian Ashes winner?

10 Remind the poms who taught them reverse swing in the first place
Yes, if none of this works, you can always remind them that if it wasn’t for Troy Cooley and David Saker, the poms would still be crying into their warm beer at yet another Ashes series lost. Just because they forgot to pass the word around back home, it doesn’t mean they aren’t responsible for England’s success. Yes, at the end of the day, Australia will still win the Ashes.

Well, an Australian.


6 thoughts on “10 Top tips on how to improve the Australian cricket team – from a Pom

  1. Numbers 3, 4, 6 and 10 must commence ASAP. Great blog mate: as an Australian fan I am gutted with our performance in this test match. We are back to the dark days of 77 through 89 when we couldn’t win a raffle even when we purchased all of the tickets.

    • I know the blog is a bit tongue in cheek but a weak Australian test team is bad for cricket. I wouldn’t be too worried about your bowling. The guys are still young and will get better (just check out Anderson’s early Ashes performances) but the batting is a big worry. Nasser Hussein was asked how he turned around the England side if the 90’s and he said they started picking on mentality over ability. You need to find some young batsman who are prepared to dig in and are bloody minded enough that they just refuse to lose.

  2. Hi mate – I just clicked on your link through twitter and read a few of the blogs etc… Then I came across this one. Hmmm…how to begin…. (a smug smile forms on my face and I laugh somewhat maniacally as I relish the chance to unleash!!!)

    But I resist that temptation – sport is such a reagt equalizer and, as sure as death and taxes, one day you’re up, the next you’re down. The Ashes series of 2013 in England was a flattering result for England – we should have won in Manchester (rain) and were unlucky elsewhere. We were thrashed in aspects of the game at Lords and rightly humiliated. England deserved to win the Ashes in this series as, overall, they were the better team…just. In boxing parlance, it was a split decision with the third judge giving England the nod by one point.

    But how all that changed in Australia only a few months later. England completely imploded under in-fighting, poor form and gool-ol’ Aussie aggro! Not just from Johnson, but Warner, CXlarke and Haddin as well. In Australia, we don’t mind seeing the team lose a game or two, because we like being the underdog – and the Australian Cricket Team has been the underdog for a few years. It’s a different culture here to the “winning” culture of the USA though. We like to be underdogs, punch out of our division, win everything, but not crow about it. (Well, okay, maybe a little crowing…).

    To see England lose anything is great for us – even if we’re not involved. The impending soccer world cup is another opportunity for Aussies to do their favourite Argentinian or German shirt and lay a bet or three on England being punted out of the competition on penalties just when theiur supporters can taste victory. Our side will be out in the first round, and rightly so – we’re crap; the worst team in the competition (worst team to be involved since Saudi Arabia a few years ago!).

    Anyway, just a few thoughts!. I’m not sure when the next Ashes series is on but it could well be next week judging by the amount of cricket we have seen lately. I’m sure your lads will put on a decent showing and be a shadow of the rabble that visited our shores this summer.

    cheers – Jamie

    • Isn’t hubris a wonderful thing?! I think England and Australia are two very closely matched sides. England had the edge due to a special series from Ian Bell in our summer, only for Haddin and Johnson to be the difference during your summer. I thought Australia did really well in South Africa (I thought you were going to be thrashed) but again many of the key performances were by players who won’t be around much longer, specifically Johnson (what a year he’s had). As you might tell, I’m a fan of cricket who supports England, not a rose tinted England fan only there for the old times. I got into cricket in my early twenties just as we entered the early 90’s, therefore England losing is the default mode for me. The past few years have been a little unsettling, it’s good to have see normality resume (this is a lie but it makes me feel better).
      As for the football world cup, if England make it out of the group stages I’ll be happy. Any more would be a bonus. The one I’m really looking forward to is the Rugby World cup in 2015. We have a young and exciting team who are developing well and we’ll be playing at home. I get the feeling we it might just be our year.
      Thanks for the great comment and for stopping by.

  3. Cheers Dylan – RWC15 will be cracker. The Kiwis and the Boks are always strong so they’ll be tough. Your blokes are hard to beat anywhere, even moreso on home soil. Wales will be a handful, so too the French. The “roughies” will be Ireland and Australia. We have been going okay but this coming winter will be the key to see just how far we’ve come. The rest on them are just making up the numbers…Scotland? Come on!!!

    I have followed cricket since I could walk – I was born with a knowledge of how to shine the ball and how to call a short run. I remember the late 70’s (yes, I’m an old fart) and the 80’s – I also remember our dark days from mid 80’s to around 1990 when we were atrocious. But our down times weren’t as long as England’s so that’s something. I feel your pain because we all go through it. You guys were close a few times over here, but the result was pretty much done after the second test. It will turn around I’m sure – just beat everyone else except us!

    England can do anything in the World Cup – out in the group stage or they can win it! You just never know – a bit like being a Spurs fan (you never know which team is coming out to play!). Or Villa. Or Newcastle. Or Man U this year! I might have a sneaky tenner on the Poms to get up and win it, just in case.

    Now…what other sports are there…??? Hmmm… oh yeah, Rugby league. Oh…sorry.

    OK (drums fingers on table…), no, I’ll think of one…actually, I better shut up before you mention the Olympics. Yorkshire won more medals than us FFS!


    • We could always talk about the Winter Olympics… 😉
      I wouldn’t waste your money on us for the football World Cup, better to put it in the charity tin. Agree about the rugby World Cup, I think it’s going to be the tightest in years. Aus have a good chance to win as long as you find a couple of good props, a hooker, two locks and a back row 🙂 (feel free to start your league comeback at any time).
      All the best

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