Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Andrew, Andrew, Andrew ...

Look, I know you are sick of hearing about my dislike, distrust, dismay and just plain dissing of the Australian selectors but really, where else is there for me to go in response to the latest rabbit-from-a-hat surprise, Clint McKay? Yes he debuted three years ago in first class cricket and yes his record is reasonable, even good but his only international experience is two one-day games in India. Against that, we have Stuart Clark, with nearly one hundred Test wickets and the man mostly responsible for Australia's only win in the recent fiasco in England. Of course, we are playing the West Indies and this is a selection for the future. Good, then make it in two years time! It comes as no surprise, that the current President of the Jamie Siddons Club, Brad Hodge, has announced his retirement today from first class cricket. Quite apart from remarking his outstanding record in all cricket caps, including the Baggy Green one, it should also be noted that he had to retire so the Presidency could be cast on Stuart Clark. Further postscript to the Hodge career: if you had your time over Brad, perhaps you would have taken that swing at the bouncer in an all night Sydney bar or as a Victorian, dropped your Wangaratta out for that lass in another bar in India. You might have been made Captain? I'll be there in Newcastle in a couple of weeks mate to cheer you on and off the field and believe me, I don't do that for many non-Bluesmen and never for a Mexican. Like others before you, your career hit a Hilditch.


  1. I like Hodge’s frankness – couldn’t get a spot unless Ponting was out. At least CA save some $ on his national contract after xmas. Perhaps they should give it to Tait.

    I’d be amazed if Hodge appeared for Aus in any format – if he didn’t get a look-in for the last 20/20 World Cup that is unlikely to change next time around.

    On the West Indies front things appear to be going from bad to worse. If Sarwan is picked for the Adelaide ‘Oval’ test there’s no way he’ll be 100% fit. Taylor is going back home so whoever takes the new ball will be a third choice bowler. They’ve got a 2nd rate Queenslander in their line-up who can’t catch.

    Good news in New Zealand where Pakistan and out Tasman rivals have demonstrated that test cricket is the bomb. The last session with all three result possibilities is ideal for a test and with local pitch assistance this eventuated (with NZ grabbing the spoils in an away test in Dunedin). Compare this with the batting classes on India roads between Sri Lanka and India. I heard for the first time that Murali is retiring from test cricket before the 2011 World Cup and this is his last overseas tour. I expect by the end of next Aus summer we will see the end of:

    Dravid, Murali, Clark, Lee, Hussey, Oram, Ntini, Younis Kahn, Kallis, Chanderpaul and…………Ponting. Big calls as Tendulkar is a possibility also. Can’t really think of any regular test player from England staring down the barrel. Obviously some of the players mentioned won’t need to officially retire from test cricket as the choice will be made for them. Some may not even retire but exclude themselves for other reasons. In any case I’m keen to hear what people think of the list and whether there are many names people would add or remove.

  2. Sorry to jump the gun but add Bond from NZ now as at 34 with another serious injury it will goodnight for him. Veyr unfortunate as upon his return from ICL banning he's done very well.

  3. i don't know if i think McKay is the right choice to step up to the ones (of course i do, he's a Vic!), but i do think NOW is the time for a new cap, not in 2 years time.
    this series means nothing, and looks to be playing out as planned, if CA's objective is to get young people experience, then this is the perfect time.

    i am a big fan of boy-next-door-Stuey, but we all know there are few that get a proper gold watch towards the end of their playing days. unless we see wholesale breakdowns within the seam stocks, Clark is yesterdays hero.

  4. I find it interesting that Hodge mentioned he was on hand if anything happened to Ponting. At the time Ponting was the best batsmen in the world and CA thought Hodge significant enough to fill that void, but not ideal for any other batting spot. That makes NO SENSE!!
    I too like Clarke, he is a line and length bowler that can tie down an end but I am afraid his time has gone. If CA are committed to youth they need to farewell Hussey, drop Watson down the order and invite Hughes back into the fold. It is the perfect time to blood young players while the opposition are weaker. No point throwing them into the deep end when we face the soap dodgers next.