Feb 03

Yes, yes, I know.

I haven’t had a post on here in a while. For those who have absolutely no idea of what I’ve been up to…well, I’ve been on holidays.
No, not the same kind of holidays that most of ‘us’ are on now. A genuine holiday away from home.
Last week, I enjoyed myself in Scamander while it was nice and warm (borderline friggin hot). I quite enjoyed it, mind you we got out of there just before the hottest temperature was recorded there ;-) .42.2 degrees C, I couldn’t think of a better place to be in hot weather, mind you!

So, now I am up here (Ulverstone) with broadband access, unlike the free dial-up we got at Scamander (SLOW). And this would be the worst location to fry in the heat. Ok, maybe that’s not true, there is air conditioning here.

But anyway, on Saturday I went to watch my older cousin play 2nd grade cricket for Ulverstone in Burnie. 3 caught-behinds and some fantastic cricket shots by the better batsmen in the team, nothing better to watch. If only….if only the canteen was open all day and it wasn’t so bloody hot. That day, Burnie recorded a temperature in the 30’s which was higher than most of the temp’s in the state! Overall, a good days spectating.

Sunday was a little different. Cooler temps were a nice change, but the Ulverstone cricket ground is no more than 800m from the house at which I am staying. This time I was watching my younger cousin play 3rd grade. 1 caught-behind, plenty of ‘chirping’ and a steady 22n.o. with the bat later, it was a good day.  Mind you, for the group of which I hang out with, it would be a very different experience. These cricketing guys are fairly social beings, their friends hang around the club rooms to watch their mates and their mates’ mates play cricket. A little different to what I’m used to, that’s for sure. Offtopic for a second, but a good beer afterwards went down really well, I kid you not :-) !

Boag’s Classic Blonde, or something like that. Very nice. Even better when you don’t pay for it :D .

A good weekend of spectating cricket, and then to head home to watch the Aussies play cricket and Federer and Nadal in the Tennis…a really great day to watch sport. YUM!

Depending on what happens this week, I may not be able to publish another post. I’m away until Saturday, unless something changes. Hey, this looks like my shortest post in a while, WOW! Less than 450wds, wow.

Catcha later,


written by Chris Jacques \\ tags: , , , , , ,

Oct 07

Yes, I know it is late. The AFL grand final was two weekends ago, and the NRL grand final was last weekend…but anyway.

Regardless of which predominate code of footy you follow, it is the end of the home-and-away season. Some say that it’s a good thing (like a good friend of mine who does not enjoy watching either of those codes to great lengths), and others (like myself) dread when the season comes to an end. It’s not like I do not enjoy either of the grand finals (the AFL one was a let-down, I tipped Geelong, and the NRL one was fantastic to watch, even though I don’t follow it to great lengths), it’s just that this time of the year incurs a void.

A void which is not usually filled until the beginning of November. The cricket season begins!

After planning most of your year around watching your favourite team play on the TV, it’s hard to get back into the mindset that there isn’t sport to watch on the TV of a weekend. No doubt that Soccer fans will complain that they always have a competition going on at any time during the year, but it’s not the same. It doesn’t feel Australian to me. If you look at the history of sport in Australia, you would realise that Soccer hasn’t been played for very long in this country. If you take a peek at the two predominate codes of footy, one has been played for 150 years (AFL), and the other 100 years (NRL). My apologies to the purist Soccer fans, but the two major codes are entrenched Australian sports. Soccer, I believe, is just another import from a foreign country.

NRL (National Rugby League), one of the Grand Final plays.

NRL (National Rugby League), one of the Grand Final plays.

AFL (Australian Footbal League), one of the marks of the 2007 Grand Final.

AFL (Australian Footbal League), one of the marks of the 2007 Grand Final.

Anyway, enough of that.

I’m not sure what happens during this time of year leading up to the new year for NRL, but I do know that the AFL have ‘trade week’ where players are bought, sold and traded to clubs for large sums of money (still nothing like the ridiculous sums of money in the English Soccer League). No doubt that both Hawthorn (AFL) and Manly (NRL) will still be celebrating their grand final victories in grand style, while the rest of us are back at school/work.

So, what do we do now?

Sit and wait, I suppose. The cricket season isn’t far away, so while there is a void at the present time, it will pass… Just the same way that it does for every other year.


written by Chris Jacques \\ tags: , , , ,

Jun 01

I don’t know about anyone else ’round here, but i’m pumped for the IPL final tomorrow morning. You want to know why I’m pumped? I am cause I saw some great cricket in the matches played in the Home and Away season. Simple as that.

Some might complain about the timings of the matches. Why should you care? Late friday night and Saturday night matches are OK for most ppl, even during work/school periods. And for those who (like me) are on holidays for some reason, they have no excuse for not watching at least ONE match. That match should be the one on tonight/morning. The Final.

Who doesn’t want to see present and former Australian players among past & present players from other countries? Seriously, come on. Who doesn’t want to see Shane Warne bowl again? Who doesn’t want to see Murali & Dhoni? Unfortunatly, there wasn’t much in the way of competition during the Semi-finals. A 9-wicket win for Chennai (Dhoni’s team) and a 100+ run win to Rajasthan (Warne’s team). At least the final should be good at this rate.

Why complain at all, when you get the chance to see young up-and-coming Indian players shine against good opposition. Guys like Tanvir, who got the most wickets for the H&A season, are worth watching especially in the finals. It is these guys that I feel have made the IPL a success.

Only time will tell if the IPL is a success or failure. But at this rate, it will succeed. It beats watching motor racing or soccer. It is fast-paced. It is exciting. It is interesting. And it is the future of cricket as we know it.

Join me, if you will, in watching tonights/this mornings match. Scheduled start of 0:15 (according to the TV guide) on TDT (direct feed of Ten from Melbourne). And like all the other matches I have watched over the past week, i’ll be having a Woodstock during the match.

Weed out.

written by Chris Jacques \\ tags: , ,

Apr 17

Most, if not all, people ’round here won’t be aware of a special event happening in India which lasts a month and starts tomorrow night.

It’s the IPL (Indian Premier League). You know, the ‘rogue’ 20/20 cricket competition.

For those who don’t know what is is, it is a ‘formal’ take on 20/20. Local, young Indian players are set alongside some players from around the world who were ‘bought’ by one of the clubs for a certain amount of money. For example, Ricky Ponting was bought for a certain amount of money by the Kolkata club. How do the clubs afford it, you ask? Well, each club is ’sponsored’ by a company or corporation. That’s the way it goes.

This is a very unique way to get young Indian players playing against the greatest players in the world, and in some cases, great players against each other. Some teams are better off than others (like Kolkata, they have Ricky Ponting, David Hussey, Sourav Ganguly, Shoaib Akhtar and Ishant Sharma). Believe it or not, Anil Kumble may face off against Ishant Sharma (they’re on different teams).

If anyone read anything into the ‘07/’08 cricket season in Australia, then they would know that Sharma troubled Ponting with his bowling. It is ironic that they are playing in the same team in the IPL.

The first IPL match is on tomorrow night, at 8 p.m. India time. India is UTC+5:30. We are UTC+10. Yes, this means that this match won’t start our time until half-past midnight. Not cool. The fixture is a bit better for some matches, as some are set to start at 5 p.m. Indian time (9:30 p.m. here). The matches themselves are televised on TDT, so those without a Set Top Box are stuffed. If you can get TDT, then I suggest recording the matches, but for some that may not be possible anyway. Therefore, hassle me (with my MythTV PVR setup), and I might be able to record them for you!

1st matchRoyal Challengers Bangalore v Kolkata Knight Riders

2008 IPL Wikipedia Link

The Official Fixture

Enjoy, I know I will. I can’t wait to see Sharma in action again!

written by Chris Jacques \\ tags: , , , ,

Apr 12

There it is, the last swimming carnival of my school life is now done and dusted. Sure, I didn’t participate in any of the races, but by ‘doing my part’ and taking photos for the school magazine, I managed to go ‘participate’ in an event that I would not normally participated in. Sure, I’ll freely admit that I missed out on last year’s swimming carnival cos I was working – but I managed to make it to this years, unlike some people I know… YOU BLUDGERS!

Now, even though I was taking photos at the swimming carnival – some would call me nasty things – I was just making my contribution to the school society, I promise.

Anyway, I noticed that even though a lot of non-seniors (that’s the year 7-10’s, folks), were actually in attendance, they weren’t doing a whole lot in the way of actually getting into the spirit of things, like, they weren’t getting involved. Some were doing homework. Others read. Others still hung out with their friends – sure, they were having a good time, but not exactly participating in the swimming carnival as such.

So, what to do? Well, we were at a Student Council meeting, and we were discussing the finer points of the swimming carnival (as you do at these sorts of meetings). Someone came up with the idea of completely revamping the swimming carnival to be more… participant friendly. Something that not only the athletic types would enjoy, but also the less athletic among us.

What about… a beach carnival. Yeah, I know, at first it sounds a little corny/in-formal/inappropriate, but maybe if there was a swimming carnival with beach cricket, beach volleyball, and for the non-participants among us, sunbaking, mucking around in the surf, and all that kind of stuff. My question to you is, would any of you be interested? Interested more so than the present swimming carnival?

Thoughts? Post ‘em in comments…

written by Benny Ling \\ tags: , , ,

Feb 11

From washed-out games to poor performances, the typical cricket-loving Australian has seen it all. In the first 4 games of the One Day Series.

Having just watched the great 4th match of the series, I can say that we *really do* have a good series. Sri Lanka may not be playing at their best, as was shown in the 3rd match, but given time (I.e a few matches), they will be up to scratch. India are well and truly flying, and would be way out in front on the leader board if it wasn’t for the washed-out games. Australia are stuck, kinda. Their side was not at all bad for the 4th match, but it needed another specialist batsman. They could have done with Hogg, if the Indians had shown the wicket to spin, which was not the case. Anyway, back to 1 week ago…

All was well and good, both sides looked promising in the first game, India especially so. After the farcical Sydney test, India deserved to have a bit of luck playing Australia with a good looking young team. India had Australia on the backfoot, thanks to some wonderful bowling by Sharma and Patan. If it wasn’t for the rain, Australia probably would have lost that match. However, it was a great ‘practice’ session for India.

The same can be said for the second match, except that it was Sri Lanka’s warmup match. Sri Lanka were on the backfoot, thanks to a great ton by Gambhir. That was well worth watching, however, it was VERY disappointing to see that the game was washed out after the tea break. And that ‘CRAP’ that Nine (Win) put on during that time of regular updates regarding that match, was appalling. There is crap, and then there is pure sh**. But that’s not what I’m talking about, and that’s another issue for another day.

Fast forward to the 3rd match. Australia were looking great, and Sri Lanka were looking bad. A bit of a turn-off game, rather boring. So much for competition. The first match without rain, and it was BORING.

And then there was today’s match. It was worth watching from the very 1st Over, when Gilly got out (to a rather dubious-looking LBW decision). It wasn’t crap batting that rocked the Australians, but the great bowling of Ishant Sharma and Sreesanth that rocked Australia. Sharma has been the one to watch for India, anyone who saw any of the Test series would know this. This guy is incredibly young, and can bowl exceptionally well. At 19, he is almost no older than some of us! Imagine that, going on a tour of a foreign country at that age! Anyway, the Australians went down (batting-wise) without a fight, to be honest. India started off attacking when they batted, until Tendulkar got out to a freakish catch by Lee. The young Indian batsman, Rohit Sharma, and the captain Dhoni steered India home from a very sticky situation (being 5/102 at one stage, with no hope of scoring runs).

Here is some suggestions for the Australian selectors to consider (seriously):

1. Drop Punter. He is not in form, he probably needs a rest, and it would be great to see Gilly captain in the Perth ODI.

2. If Hogg isn’t going to be an addition to the 11-man squad, then consider a proper paceman to cover somebody else (Clarke). Stuart Clarke is not a ODI bowler. He is a bloody good Test bowler, however. I think it is time to see some new blood in the squad (*HILFY*!!!)

3. Bring in some new blood. Seriously. Do what the Indians are doing, cause they look promising. And they are delivering too.

4. Give Gilly a bowl. Please! One of the Nine (Win) commentators suggested this back at the Adelaide Test. Considering Hadden is in the squad, you could always give him the gloves…

Anyway, I praise India for what they have done so far this summer. I not only wish for them to continue it, but I want them to *beat* Australia in this Tri-Series. They should do it for cricket. Anyway, who wants to see one team dominating the cricket? It’s just no fun without competition…

Chris Jacques


written by Chris Jacques \\ tags: , , ,