No Minister

A Mix Of Cricket Trivia

My post with a best ever Australian Cricket X1 elicited some sledges etc in the comments and they made me think of various characters, famous sayings and incidents over the years I have been playing and following cricket:

Yabba was an icon of the famous `hill’ at the SCG and the following is attributed to him although I see others have used it too. Frank Tyson, possibly the fastest ever English bowler was bowling to an Australian batsman whose name I don’t recall in the 1954/55 Ashes series – the batsman had played and missed at 5 or 6 balls in a row (8 ball overs in Australia in those days) when Yabba yelled – bowl him a piano Frank and see if he can play that.

Brian Johnson was one of several great English Commentators that were a part of my cricket listening life. The following two gems are attributed to him. He was commentating on a test match England v West Indies in the late 70’s or early 80s when he came out with this one – the bowler is Holding the batsmans Willey – Michael Holding WI bowling to Peter Willey E.

His second effort involves New Zealand great Glenn Turner playing for his County Worcestershire and facing England fast bowler Bob Willis, Warwickshire. Turner got hit in the abdominal protector area (box we called them) and went down as men do. Eventually he was restored to fitness and faced up to Willis again for Johnson to pick up the commentary with – Turner to face Willis, one ball remaining.

JR Reid was batting against India on the 1955/56 tour. According to Reid’s book Sword Of Willow Indian left arm spinner Gupte was pitching the ball about 18 inches to 2ft outside off stump and spinning it away – ball after ball making it nearly impossible for the NZ right hand batsmen to score off him. Reid decided to do something about it and make a point – Gupte bowled a ball and Reid never moved from his stance as the ball went through to the keeper.

Gary Bartlett was possibly New Zealand’s fastest ever bowler. He played in the late 50’s early 60’s but injury and an alleged suspect action limited his career – at his best he terrorised batsmen. Someone I played club cricket with told this story about him in a Hawke Cup match Marlborough v Wanganui. Bartlett hit a batsmen and while the batsman was being checked out Bartlett walked back to his mark and called – prop the bastard back up and I will knock him down again. Wouldn’t go down too well today.

Finally when I was in my high school first X1 we played in the local mens senior competition. In one game the opposing wicketkeeper appealed against the sun, we complained about their umpire smoking and their fast bowler clean bowled Ian (Nectar) Stevens (All Black) with an orange – I was umpire at the time.

Written by pdm1946

February 4, 2021 at 7:39 am

Posted in Sport.

2 Responses

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  1. Ha ha, gold.

    Regarding Bob Cunis:

    This is Cunis at the Vauxhall End. Cunis, a funny sort of name: neither one thing nor the other.”

    Variously attributed to John Arlott and Allan Ross

    John JohnO

    February 4, 2021 at 9:28 am

    • Good one JJ.

      pdm1946

      February 4, 2021 at 10:11 am


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