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No more room at the Inn

Oliver Brett | 06:59 UK time, Wednesday, 22 November 2006

ob66.jpgFor a city that has an impressive amount of hotels, many soaring into the sky Manhattan-style, the news that there is not a bed left in Brisbane can only mean one thing.

The Gabba really will be “full to the rafters” on Thursday – I quote Andrew Flintoff - and there’s a potential problem in store.

Fans, whether from England or Australia, who purchased discontinued (illegally re-traded) tickets on internet auction sites are bound to attempt to gain access.

But one way or another, and despite any attempts by Cricket Australia to ensure predominantly Australian support, England fans will be here in record numbers.

Some are flying in on the very morning of the match.

They include a Brummie couple I met on the plane to Singapore and an old school friend of mine I haven’t heard much about for 10 years until he fired a reply to a previous blog.

At this rate, they’ll have to build emergency tents in the Botanic Gardens if the hotels really are that full.

After two days of paying scant attention to the antics of the Barmy Army, I decided it was time to pay them a visit.

I don’t know if it was jet-lag, hangovers or genuine nervous excitement about the Test match, but most were sipping their pints slowly and quietly on Wednesday afternoon.

I can report on an interesting exchange between Ricky Ponting and Radio One’s David Garrido in the Aussie skipper’s final pre-match press conference.

GARRIDO: What do you make of England's fans the Barmy Army? Any danger of them getting under your skin at all?

PONTING: Probably (laughs). Probably. No look, I've said for a long time I think they're the best sporting fans and followers in the world. They are terrific supporters of the England cricket team and they have fun, pretty much regardless of what's going on in the field.

GARRIDO: About the Aussie propaganda, I've seen some billboards saying things like 'The Poms' worst nightmare' [an advert for ice cold beer]. What do you make of that?

PONTING: I haven't seen it.

GARRIDO: A bit OTT? [Ponting stares blankly] A bit over-the-top?

PONTING: OTT? Hmm, Ok... Yeah, maybe it is. Who cares?


Meanwhile, at the Gabba, there is nothing left to do.

The sponsor’s logo has been spray-painted onto the outfield.

A team of cleaners, kitted out with hoovers in backpacks, have patrolled every inch of carpet in the corporate areas.

The cutlery, glasses and napkins are positioned ever so precisely in the banqueting rooms.

Incidentally, such grandeur is in stark contrast to what you can see if you look out of the back windows, the opposite side of where the action will be.

There, a porn emporium sits alongside a dingy launderette and some of the surrounding clapboard houses are in urgent need of repair.

I sign off today’s blog with a brief summary of some famous cricket names and the products they are marketing:

Ian Botham: Beer
David Boon: Beer
Michael Hussey: Whiskey
Mark Taylor: Air-conditioning units

Can you suggest any other possible commercial tie-ups in the world of cricket? I leave it to you…

Comments  Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 08:38 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Bob Chubb wrote:

Perhaps Bob Willis could start advertising Vick's Nasal Spray??

  • 2.
  • At 09:04 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Ralph Brooker wrote:

I know it's not strictly ashes, but couldn't Jeremy Coney market fluoxetine (prozac)?

  • 3.
  • At 09:16 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • richpinks wrote:

Perhaps Mike Gatting for Pukka Pies?

  • 4.
  • At 10:11 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • richard price wrote:

Product for Shane Warne promotion: Hot air heaters.

  • 5.
  • At 10:25 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Tim Lloyd wrote:

Justin Langer - Phyllosan

Mathew Hayden - Sponsor for the "Stop bullying in the playground" campaign

Goochie - Gillette

  • 6.
  • At 10:39 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • phllk wrote:

Re Marks post

surelY Geraint Jones should be be sponsored by Teflon

  • 7.
  • At 10:52 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Richard Harper wrote:

Shane Warne: a device to help you open jam jars (after all his right wrist is a bit weak)

  • 8.
  • At 11:07 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Alex wrote:

Its all set up to be a fantastic series.

How about Ricky Ponting advertising Alcoholics Anonymous with Anger Management!!!

  • 9.
  • At 11:25 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Thoams Jack wrote:

I know this cricketeer is'nt ashes material, but he's been in the news:

How about Shoaib Aktar, "the Rawalpindi Express" advertising the Betty Ford drugs Rehab clinic, and if a tv or radio commercial, have "The Verves" hit single, "The drugs don't work" playing in the background?

Mmmm.... beer.

  • 11.
  • At 11:53 AM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Neil Thomas wrote:

re: commercial tie-ups

Shane Warne...Dieting aids.

  • 12.
  • At 12:07 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Steve C wrote:

Glenn McGrath promoting hot-air balloon rides

  • 13.
  • At 12:17 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • david molloy wrote:

How about the Aussie's advertiseing SARGA with there team of old past it players.

  • 14.
  • At 12:37 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Ben Thompson wrote:

Glenn McGrath: Hair Dye
Justin Langer: First Aid Kits

  • 15.
  • At 12:37 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • AussieDamo wrote:

Tresco: flying business class on holidays

Warney: Mobile phone SMS deals

  • 16.
  • At 12:39 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • neil wrote:

Geraint Jones - Teflon Frying pans

  • 17.
  • At 12:44 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Ian Gould wrote:

Product Endorsement Ideas

Bob Willis PROZAC (to cheer the miserable sod up a bit!!)

David Gower GRECIAN 2000

Mike Gatting SLIMFAST or Weightwatchers

Chris Read Preparation H (for his piles because he is going to be sitting around a lot in Oz...........unfortunately!!)

Kevin Peitersen HAIR GEL

  • 18.
  • At 12:52 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • WishFull Thinker wrote:

Perhaps Ponting would advertise for bulk buying of Prayer Rosaries!!

  • 19.
  • At 12:54 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Tim Holman wrote:

2006-07 Ashes

Over-hyped, over night and over there!

(Media) People who couldn't give a toss about cricket until England won last year are giving me a headache.

When you have been watching England play criclet for more than forty years all this crap on the BBC and the rest of the media is enough to put the true cricket fan off.

Keep cricket for the cricket fans - it is not the new sex!

  • 20.
  • At 12:59 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Andy wrote:

Glenn Mcgrath - deep heat perfect for those tired old aching limbs plus super glue maybe that will keep his over eager comments to himself.

  • 21.
  • At 01:00 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • lewis wrote:

Glenn McGrath - Esure (Surely he is the only guy on the planet annoying enough to take over from Michael Winner)

Justin Langer - Asprin

Nasser Hussain - Sharwoods Poppadom Fingers

  • 22.
  • At 01:06 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Ross wrote:

Justin Langer & Mathew Hayden in campaign against Grevious Bodily Harmisson

  • 23.
  • At 01:07 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Matt wrote:

How about:

Kevin Pietersen: working abroad

Geraint Jones: sudafed - he can't even catch a cold.

  • 24.
  • At 01:10 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Andy Magee wrote:

Ashley Giles - Long Life Milk. Takes ages to turn.

  • 25.
  • At 01:16 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • James Draycott wrote:

We have missed off the list MR Botham and Mr Lamb, and their work in the UK for british meat standards agencies, Beefy and Lamby with the cartoon pair cooking in the kitchen, and in one of the ads, my fav the pair play the BBC Cricket theme tune on pots and pans :D

Getting a little twitchy now, only a few hrs to go!!!

  • 26.
  • At 01:18 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Kit wrote:

Barmy Army - Kleenix Tissues

  • 27.
  • At 01:20 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • pistola wrote:

"There, a porn emporium sits alongside a dingy launderette and some of the surrounding clapboard houses are in urgent need of repair."

Hey... that's my ex-neighbourhood you're talking about there mate!

What I'd give to be back there now and not sitting in dingy London.

Comercial tie ups -

How about Merv Hughes and Immac
Herschelle Gibbs and any bank large enough to take his dosh
David Gower (circa 1979) and Johnsons cotton wool
Alan Lamb and ... lamb?

  • 29.
  • At 01:32 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Chris Ney wrote:


Bob Willis would have to be advertising Lego. He's always talking about "bits and pieces players", and he'd then be able to truly send them "back to their counties" cheaply and easily.

David Boon and/or Merv Hughes should be advertising sea trips in between the Test Matches to go and view walrus basking on roacks and swimming around in the sea.

Geoffrey Boycott should be advertising some local locksmiths near to each ground, as he's always trying to 'start the wicket up' with his keys.

Richie Benaud should be advertising Mastercard, as he's just priceless. Where would we be without his commentary?

Henry Blofeld should be advertising cravats and/or cakes. There's real money to be made there you know.

Darrell Hair could be trundled out to advertise some mediating service, the Aussie equivalent to ACAS.

Chris Read should be advertising insurance, as you never know when an accident (Geriant Jones) might happen (to be picked ahead of him).

Stuart MacGill should be out advertising the benefits of the Australian Secret Service (if there is one), as he never smiles, and refuses to even acknowledge any kind of banter from the Barmy Army. If there isn't one, some vaguely boring mail order wine service.

Oh and Adam Gilchrist should never be allowed to advertise mobile 'phones again. He should be encouraged to take up acting instead of cricket though as he was good in those Hutchinson Three adverts you know...

  • 30.
  • At 01:33 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Tom Murphy wrote:

How about Ed Joyce, Pieterson and the rest of the imports advertising the holiday attractions of their own countries?

  • 31.
  • At 02:12 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Andy Prescott wrote:

Ricky "PUNTER" Ponting fronting campaign for William Hill

  • 32.
  • At 02:22 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Misha wrote:

Shane Warne - Anything other than those oh-so-annoying Advanced Hair adverts.

The Test Match Special crew - Mr Kipling's cakes

Inzaman ul-Haq - Pies. All of them.

Darryl Hair - Specsavers (because I bet he wishes he'd gone there before the Pakistan series started)

  • 33.
  • At 02:33 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Robin Wilson wrote:

Geoffrey Boycott - Superglue

Commercial tie-ups:

McGrath, Warne, Langer, Hayden etc. - Sanatogen wine, Saga holidays and Wintergreen rub

  • 35.
  • At 02:52 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • DaveM wrote:

Gilchrist - him painting white gloss paint lines outside his off stump to stop wafting one to the slips/gully

Jones - vaseline - make the journey easier into Duncan Fletcher.

Flintoff - cotton wool - god forbid he gets injured!

  • 36.
  • At 03:11 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Nigel wrote:

Given the King of Spain typo error for his mugs, surely Ashely Giles would be a great tie-in for buying property in Espana.

  • 37.
  • At 03:51 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • richard Bradford wrote:

Mathew Haydon must be advertising dog food.

Justing Langer for the new 'George' Kids outfits range.

Ricky Ponting for the new mothercare dummy range.

Glen McGrath for stanna stair liftf or the new pension book scheme.

  • 38.
  • At 04:03 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Mike Bellhouse wrote:

Andrew Strauss ..................... Classic FM

  • 39.
  • At 04:08 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Mike Bellhouse wrote:

Marcus Trescothick .................. DiaCalm

  • 40.
  • At 04:10 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Mike Bellhouse wrote:

Kevin Pieterson ...................... Loreal Hair Dye

  • 41.
  • At 04:38 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Paul Carroll wrote:

I flew to Brisbane the day after England with Beefy knocked HM Austrailia out of the World Cup in 92. A bus driver threw by change on the floor and I laughed in his face, Great Memories...Come on England, lets hope there's more change on the floor this weekend.

  • 42.
  • At 05:28 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • scotty braybrook wrote:

Commercial ties ins? There could could be loads - Mike Gatting - rhinoplasty, David Gower & Phil Tuffnell - Flying Lessons; Hansie Cronje - Betfair, surely; Mike Atherton - Builders Merchants (for their sand)... this must be inexhaustible.... Simon Jones - BUPA....

  • 43.
  • At 06:01 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Anonymous wrote:

Nasser Hussain: Bitter

  • 44.
  • At 06:15 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Rob Whittle wrote:

Oliver, England need to compete, be aggressive and show Australia definate intent from Day 1. The bowlers really needs to get about the Australian batsmen as Harmy and Freddie did at Lords in 1985.

  • 45.
  • At 06:26 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • cld wrote:

Glenn McGrath - canesten

  • 46.
  • At 07:37 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Offshore Alan wrote:

Rick Ponting :- Any product proclaiming "There is no substitute".

  • 47.
  • At 08:55 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Sam Parkin wrote:

Justin Langer maybe promoting Big & Tall menswear?

  • 48.
  • At 09:36 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Stuart May wrote:

In response to the sponsors for ashes folk how does Duncan Fletcher promoting Friends Reunited sound ?

  • 49.
  • At 09:43 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Phil Kay wrote:

Warney and Glenda - Domestos bleach, for their hair of course

  • 50.
  • At 10:06 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Jimmy wrote:

Shane Warne - Mariage guidance
Shane Warne - Nicorette patches, Gum, implants.
Shane Warne - Winners don't take drugs
Mathew Hayden - Gorrilas in the mist fund
Freddie & Brett - Achieve your goals with our ten steps to perfection on mail order DVD.

John Buchanan - Investment in people "It's never too early to start training your next generation!"
It's just too late for Austrailia regardless of what happens in this series!

  • 51.
  • At 10:28 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Derek Holyoake wrote:

Sorry England but your pain starts here. I am an ex pom who has been here for 40 years and i can tell you that youwill be very lucky to even draw a test, Adelaide you might because no one wins a game of cricket there ( dead wicket, short bounraries and dull venue ).
England only just crawled over the line in 2 of the test matches when the Ashes were won and that WILL not happen here as Australia are the best team in the world and England sadly of late are near the bottom. Sorry boys but those are the facts......keep your tissues handy!

  • 52.
  • At 10:49 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • james roberts wrote:


have fun


  • 53.
  • At 10:55 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • tom wrote:

Duncan Fletcher - sour drop lollies

  • 54.
  • At 11:04 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Jem Lloyd wrote:

How about Justin Langer advertising Anadin Extra headache pills? Matthew 'King of the Swingers' Hoggard marketing monkey nuts? Or maybe poor old Liam Plunkett selling hostess drinks trolleys...

  • 55.
  • At 11:04 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Craig wrote:

Its funny that its only taken the Poms 20 year too win back the ashes ,when its going to take the AUSSIES just over one ,we may be old but any of the AUSSIE would be a walk up start in your team , where the Poms may make it into our third grade local cricket team , sure they might have one or two in the Australia A side ( just for show ) , its going to be a long hot summer here in Australia one that England had wished they stayed at home or were on the beach playing cricket (and gettig beaten ) by the local under 12's , so ..........GO AUSSIES GO...BRING IT ON !

  • 56.
  • At 11:16 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • John Haslam wrote:

Keith Fletcher and KFC - by picking Giles he is playing chicken even before the First Test has started.
Or perhaps Birds Custard - that is yellow as well!!!

Have just logged in at 23.15 GMT...and could not believe my eyes...Panesar out and Giles in! What a joke. The Aussies must be smiling from ear to ear at the realisation that yet again, the England management go for the safe option. This seems to be a common theme with English sport, just look at the England football team for yet another indication of going for the safe option. Why is it that we cannot be taught to play match winners. Fair enough, MPs batting is not the best in the world, but his average is only about 5 less than Giles! Also, MP has a reputation for being the type of fellow that a team warms to, and feeds off. Am absolutely gutted, and if this goes wrong, Fletcher should be given the boot after this test! It is fair to say, I am unhappy to say the least.

  • 58.
  • At 11:26 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • Kerry Richter wrote:

Cricket Australia should have an advertising campaign already started (before the first test starts) in conjunction with Qantas limited return flights to UK now available for Pommie cricket supporters - book now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Complimentary towels available.
Free Excess baggage.
Non Stop
Buy one get one free
Oi Oi Oi

  • 59.
  • At 11:28 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • dicky bell wrote:

I can't wait to see the events that take place over the next 5 days

I live in rural France now where cricket is a thing that jumps in the fields of grass & trying to explain to Jean Claude, Arnaud & Fabrice what the game is about is ...imposible!!

allez les blancs!

  • 60.
  • At 11:38 PM on 22 Nov 2006,
  • ed wrote:

Talking of commercial tie-ups..
Have heard on a few Aussie internet stations a song that's been talking up the Aussies...
Well I chanced upon this song gently taking the Mick out of the Aussies...

Apparently it was #6 in South Africa, of all places

Worth a listen , very funny!

  • 61.
  • At 12:00 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Duncan wrote:

I'm sat in Knoxville, TN, US and cannot hear or see any coverage. I'm a POM and need to hear this - can anyone help?????

  • 62.
  • At 12:03 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • J. Gregory wrote:

Hi everyone! Bet your like me, can't wait!! I'm only 15. Doin my coursework and revisin while listenin!!! Come on the england boys!!!

  • 63.
  • At 12:08 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • John Haslam wrote:

I was so gutted before by Fletchers decision I even got his name wrong! Mind you he does not deserve people getting his name correct - CLUCK, CLUCK, CLUCK!!!!

  • 64.
  • At 12:11 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • ash wrote:

kevin pietersen for hair colouring agents
shane warne for diuretics
geraint jones for butter

btw can someone tell me how i can mail into the TMS inbox

  • 65.
  • At 12:24 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • ravinder wrote:

am utterlly depressed that monty isn't playing. i fancy making "it'll be alright monty, ashley's rubbish"-t shirt and wearing it to work in the morning. we have lacked backbone when it has come selection and this year is no different. a very sad day for british asians everywhere. race matters.

  • 66.
  • At 12:52 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Tom wrote:

A Pom in Aussieland! C'mon Freddie and the guys watchin nervously from my desk in Sydney!

  • 67.
  • At 01:00 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • CJ wrote:

i agree, can someone tell me how to email the TMS inbox??

  • 68.
  • At 01:12 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • david williams wrote:

Botham for beer? Shredded Wheat more likely, with a belly like he's sporting at the moment i wouldn't bet him a Harmison maiden he coudn't eat six to be honest...

  • 69.
  • At 01:39 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Darth Vader wrote:

How about
The Australian team endorses Viagra.
The choice of the Outback and Aussie cricket team!!!

  • 70.
  • At 02:00 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Mark Harbison wrote:

I know this is one is probably too easy but surely Eddo Brands could have some sort of tie in with any leading biscuit manufacturer or while we are going down the sledging route get Merv Hughes to promote bus travel!

  • 71.
  • At 03:05 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Nick Tyler wrote:

Im in NY . Why on earth would BBC stop me from getting Test Match Special commentary ? No help from World Service either .......... in fact the BBC general coverage in the USA is almost zero , no shortwave and no local carriers for more than an hour each day ........ what an opportunity deliberately lost .

  • 72.
  • At 03:06 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Nick Tyler wrote:

Im in NY . Why on earth would BBC stop me from getting Test Match Special commentary ? No help from World Service either .......... in fact the BBC general coverage in the USA is almost zero , no shortwave and no local carriers for more than an hour each day ........ what an opportunity deliberately lost .

  • 73.
  • At 05:47 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • nj thompson wrote:

you boys badly need panesar and giles to be playing..should have thought about the two spinner option..hoggard is surplus here..

he would be better off advertising ashtrays for motorbikes... or something similarly useless

  • 74.
  • At 06:47 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • MistaJohn wrote:

Please take Boycott off TMS. He was continually criticising Ponting, continuing over the applause when he got his ton. "I prefer Lara in his pomp", "They've made it too easy for him", "He's a goodish bat, a poor captain", "he's only got two shots so you shoud be able to bowl to him". Shoot the bastard now! I am English BTW.

  • 75.
  • At 06:57 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • paul twiney wrote:

So, here working hard in Melbourne. I am an Englishman who should have been at the Brisbane Test but could not get out of work. The tickets have gone to waste, I am therefore a tad peeved.
1. Listening to the Oz commentary on ABC radio. Pietersen is spinning it a distance! They announce that Warne and McGill rate this as one of the best spinners wickets in the country. Giles is a fine individual but not a match winning spinner. Panesar was omitted, was he that bad in the Adelaide warm up game?
2. When they call for replacement balls, where do those balls come from? Have they just been bashed about in the nets? Or maybe in a practise game, an under 14s match?
3. Ben Dirs, are you from Essex? There is something about your writing style.

  • 76.
  • At 07:43 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Brian Groth wrote:

Why did you Oliver Brett - a Pommie Public Schoolboy name if ever there was one - have to spoil an okay piece with a condescending dig at Brisbane or more particularly the poor areas of the surrounding suburb of Wollongabba. Everyone has got its poor areas - the surrounds of Old Trafford and The Oval come immediately to mind, and you can't enter any phone box in England without being confronted by a swathe of porn ads. But everyone knows that the poverty and porn are always and everywhere with us. If you want to write a quality piece on the ground and the city and make it interesting particualrly for us over here, why not talk of the wonderful and historic trees in front of the Gabba grond, its wonderful grass and multi-coloured seats, that special sunlight so different from England's and the magnificent Brisbane River just up the road. Stop looking at shabby houses and porn shops Oliver there'll be plenty of those when you get home. Take instead a boat ride on the Brisbane River at night and write about that or even visit a Public School - there are plenty in Brisbane. Raise your toffey eyes Oliver and enjoy the Capital of the Sunshine State rather than becoming a Gabba Basher!

Brian In Norway

  • 77.
  • At 08:01 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Julie wrote:

Well with Australia scoring 346 runs and only losing 3 wickets, you poms would surely be hoping that Flintoff doesn't get injured because at the moment. England look like a one man Flintoff band.

  • 78.
  • At 08:37 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Anthony Wethereld wrote:

I could take offence at the statement -

"..and despite any attempts by Cricket Australia to ensure predominantly Australian support"

Perhaps Oliver Brett could back that up with 'hard' facts - or might he just be 'hard up' finding them? But what's the harm in trying to garner such support anyway - providing it doesn't disadvantage opponents' supporters unduly?

On another note - many Aussie cricket followers (like myself) are wondering (as can be seen in various blogs over the past couple of years) why we don't 'doctor' our wickets to suit our team when this is done in MANY other countries...I (and others I talk with) have never seen or heard proof that such a practice not only occurs in Australia but would actually be condoned.

Must be our 'fair play' sporting nature.

  • 79.
  • At 10:01 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Liam Hughes wrote:

This is one of the most banal blogs ever, you are on the BBC website, please try to write something vaguely interesting next time.

  • 80.
  • At 10:22 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Damian Johnson wrote:

Shane Warne - Mobile Phones
Kevin peterson and Andrew Strauss - Tourism for South Africa
Shane Watson - Effects of Steriod abuse
Stuart Clark - Thunderbirds

  • 81.
  • At 10:36 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Richman wrote:

Brian Groth - you epitomise Australian sport fans inability to take critisism or banter in anything like the way you feel at liberty to dish it out. Re-read your post. As an Australian, I feel continually embarrassed by this attitude. Its a sport, sport.

  • 82.
  • At 10:40 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Tommy Scragend wrote:

Quote : " I could take offence at the statement -

"..and despite any attempts by Cricket Australia to ensure predominantly Australian support"

Perhaps Oliver Brett could back that up with 'hard' facts - or might he just be 'hard up' finding them?" (end quote)

How about letting Australian residents buy tickets 18 days before they go on general release?

And all this "Go off in green and gold" that CA keep banging on about. England don't need (and don't have) the ECB begging the supporters to go to matches!

  • 83.
  • At 10:54 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Hodge wrote:

The total arrogance coming from some of you Aussies makes me laugh. You bat well on the best batting pitch on the planet and you think its game over. Had we got in, the magnificent Strauss would have scored quite a few, not to mention Cook and Bell.

  • 84.
  • At 10:56 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • isaac hunt wrote:

Re . commercial tie-ups .
How about Adam Gilchrist advertising for Volkswagen , since he bears more than a passing resemlance to a Beetle with the doors open !
Or Glenn Mcgrath advertising for Jacob's Creek since both make a fine w(h)ine
Merv Hughes for weightwatchers
Boycs advertising Yorkshire Puddings
The ICC sponsoring research into worms and other spineless creatures

  • 85.
  • At 10:56 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Mick smith wrote:

The Hilton still has rooms !

  • 86.
  • At 11:02 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • duncan wrote:

"AMOUNTS" of hotels in Brisbane? Surely not.

  • 87.
  • At 11:44 AM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Andrew Long wrote:

The Cricket Australia Administrators have blunted The Barmy Armys effectivness by only allowing a small number to siy next to each other.Also has anyone seen the racist Ford "tonk a pom" ad campaign?

  • 88.
  • At 12:17 PM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • Andy Miles wrote:

Ashley Giles - recycling bins
Andrew Strauss - classical music or Danube torism
Ed Joyce - Dublin
A. Cook - kitchen equipment
Monty Panesar - curry powder
Ian Bell - ringtones
Paul Collingwood - Collingwood Aussie Rules F.C.
C Read - Reed Employment Agency (C Reed about it)
Matthew Hoggard - dog food
K Pieterson - S African Airways one-way only fares

Darren Lehmann had his testimonial function last week (which several of the England team attended). A special limited edition beer was brewed for the occasion. The rumours that Lehmann drank it all himself are probably unfounded.

  • 90.
  • At 02:04 PM on 23 Nov 2006,
  • "Bowling Warnie!" wrote:

Australia are the greatest sporting nation in the world.
Ponting's men will not concede a match in this series.
I'm just waiting to see McGrath score his maiden test century.

  • 91.
  • At 11:21 PM on 24 Nov 2006,
  • Craig Elliott wrote:

Why is the BBC podcast hosted by such Aussie-centric commentators? Having said that we're not going to get rational comment from the 'great' Boycott, having rubbished Fletcher recently. What is the BBC trying to do with cricket? Is it just because you've lost the full TV rights that you allow this appalling coverage? No wonder everyone liked Channel Four's coverage despite the horse racing interuptions. In truth, it's a question of professionalism. I dare say that only comes when you have to be governed by the market instead of being subsidised to reproduce crap.

  • 92.
  • At 11:58 PM on 24 Nov 2006,
  • Craig Elliott wrote:

Re: England selections

England's chances of winning the Ashes series is clearly a matter of the success of defensive selections. In the last series the emphasis was on attack. Our bowlers were superior to Australia's and were able to humble some great batsmen to low scores in all but the final test (where centuries were commonplace). This series we're obviously understrength in the bowling attack. But we can't solve this flaw by removing our best wicket keeper. Certainly, on his best performance Geraint Jones will score about 50 runs in a test match. But the question is how many more runs would he concede as a wicketkeeper than Chris Reid. A good wicket keeper will save your team 50 runs in an innings, so why the emphasis on batting. This is a mistake. As is selecting Giles, when Monty Panesar has performed well for England since the Ashes. The fundamental flaw is our English obsession with judging players (of all sports) on their best performance rather than their average performance. If we chose the latter criterion, then we would create steely sides that would make it difficult for their opposition, rather than failing when challenged by an equal force. Erratic bowling is only the tip of the iceberg. It is the psychological battle that England won in the lats Ashes series. England pummelled the resolute Aussies into submission by winning almost every session of the last four test matches. With this test as good as lost, because they allowed all of the batsmen to get good scores, we need to recapture the confidence of last year, block out the pathetic and petulent responses of the Australian hierarchy to erradicate English chanting during the series, and concentrate on the fundamentals. Bowling tightly, batting responsibly, and fielding energetically and effectively. Bowlers win test matches, batsmen only defend. If our bowlers don't delivery, we've got no chance. Although there are now many Australians who are interested in watching this series, it has taken them over eight years to realise that their team is good and worth supporting. In 1998-99, if it had not have been for English backpackers and ex-pats, most of the Australian grounds would have been half empty!

  • 93.
  • At 01:49 AM on 01 Dec 2006,
  • James wrote:

I'm a final year student staying up all night to watch this ashes series. Now i don't mind sacrificing my degree for the ashes, but only if they win! pull your socks up straussy!

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