From left field
By Tim Hancox
Fools or politicians seem to always become sports administrators in this country! South African cricket appears to be doing a remarkably good job of shooting itself in the foot. Why, oh why have we managed to let Allan Donald slip through our fingers? Seeing the great man helping the blundering Steve Harmison is heart breaking when one thinks about what he could be doing working with the likes of Makhaya Ntini, Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel in the Proteas set up. There is also the chance that England might approach Jonty Rhodes to help with their fielding. These two along with other national treasures need to be utilised in South Africa. This has long been a problem since the refusal to allow Kepler Wessels to assist with the mental conditioning on an Australian tour, when he has the knowledge and character to be a real motivator on a tour down under. Please can we start to use the top resources at our disposal?
On a more positive note we are in store for a most entertaining month with both the T20 cricket world cup and the rugby world cup at our doorstep. Academics, for many of us, may have to take a back seat while the really important stuff is unfolding in France. It is always a heart warming thing to see the All Blacks with worried faces, as anything short of victory will be unacceptable as they enter as favourites as they have in every world cup since its inauguration in 1987. Twenty years ago now since their sole world cup triumph, which add pressure to the likes of the ‘ever-present’ Ritchie McCaw, Dan ‘the man’ Carter and ‘Deadly’ Dougie Howlett.
I enjoy seeing the Kiwi bully boys under a bit of pressure, not to say the brave men in green and gold are under any less pressure. I have always been jealous of their stars having cool nicknames while our guys don’t. The most creative name the Springboks could find has been ‘Big Joe’ van Niekerk, which you hardly need to be J.R.R. Tolkien to have thought up. Here is my attempt to give our guys an edge so that Murray Mexted can be equally excited when our boys show their class. The Springboks game breakers ‘Devious’ Du Preez, ‘Vivacious’ Victor Matfield and ‘the thunderbolt’ Byan Habana. Doesn’t quite have the same ring to it but it’s a start.
I will however be cautious, as you don’t want to go around name calling in the rugby world as Engand’s Lawrence Dallaglio did before a crucial six nations test against France. When questioned about his opposing number Imanol Harinordoquy, the ostentatious Dallaglio replied “You mean Harry Ordinary”, only for the big French number eight to have a storming game and assist his side in trouncing their English counterparts. This is part of what makes rugby such a great game, as we prepare to wear our hearts on our sleeves and live through another world cup.
Cheers to that.