Six And Out: Announcement From James & Maxie

*** Update: The Full Toss has now returned! James is editing the site solo. 

We’ve got some news for you today. It’s both bad news and good news.

 Here’s the bad news … As some of you may know, we’ve had quite a few problems at TFT over the last few weeks. We got hacked. Then we got hacked again. The culprits, it seems, were the Chinese (or some Chinese people anyway).

 Concealed deep in our files, alongside some malicious code, were hundreds of hidden pages selling fake handbags, jewellery and other assorted crap. These webpages were all in Chinese symbols. ‘Take away’ from that what you will.

 Although we’ve now moved hosts, which means that the site is now much faster and secure, sorting out all the problems was a rather grueling and frustrating process. It also gave us the chance to take stock and reflect on where we are and where we’re going.

Consequently, after a great deal of soul-searching, we’ve reluctantly decided to take a break from The Full Toss. This is partly because Maxie, for reasons he explains below, wants to retire from the crease and return to the stands. But it’s also because I can see the huge potential in taking the spirit of TFT but widening the scope to encompass a range of sports. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a while now.

 The good news, therefore, is that I’m going to continue blogging – but under a new banner. Rather than merely discussing the big stories in the world of cricket, I’ll be discussing the big stories in the broader sporting world too.

Cricket will still be my bread and butter, so there’ll still be plenty of cricketing analysis (starting with Sunday’s 3rd Test), but I feel the time is right to diversify.  I know many of you love other sports too, so I hope you’ll welcome the opportunity to talk about other things as well.

 The new blog is called Eat My Sports! – a name that encapsulates what the new site is all about. The emphasis is on putting your views across and encouraging banter and debate. In many ways it’s the same TFT mantra but on a larger scale.

 When you think about it, the issues we hold dear at TFT – the cost of following a game, TV access, administrative unaccountability, disenfranchisement of supporters – are just as pressing in rugby, football, golf and other sports. When we’re not talking about action on the pitch, we’ll be discussing these vitally important issues.

 The other bit of news is that we’ve developed an app for the new site, so it will be easy to read new articles and join the discussion when you’re out an about. I’m particularly excited about this. It’s really quite good – as you’ll see when it’s ready to download in a couple of weeks.

Anyway, it’s time for me to hand over to Maxie. I hope to see you all soon at the shiny new site – which you’ll find looks remarkably similar to this one! Thanks for all your support over the last few years. I really appreciate it.



The blogosphere is a fertile breeding ground for outlandish conspiracy theories, but on this occasion I will have to disappoint those of a feverishly imaginative bent.

I’d love to tell you I’m leaving TFT because the ECB’s henchmen have threatened to set about me kneecaps with a baseball bat. I’d be thrilled if I could inform you I’ve been hypnotised by Pam Nash and am taking up a twin-role as Mike Selvey’s PA and secretary of the Alastair Cook fan club. I’d be delighted if I were able to break the news that I’ve seduced away from TFT for a new vocation dropping grapes into Piers Morgan’s mouth.

Alas, none of these are true.

The real reason is that everyday life has made it increasingly impossible for me to do justice to my responsibilities as co-editor of this blog. In my day job, I am a freelance – often on the road and regularly facing challenging deadlines. Away from work, I have another, far more important new commitment – as a father to a three-month old daughter. Regrettably but inevitably, the combination of work and family pressures no longer leaves me with time to contribute meaningfully to TFT – which is why, as you may have noticed, I’ve only posted rarely during the last couple of months.

After six years of hard work building up this site, the last thing James and I desire is for TFT to wither away into a shadow of what we’ve always wanted it to be – a vibrant, up to date, well-informed and relevant repository for debate and comment on English cricket. I’m not saying we have necessarily lived up to that aspiration, but when we began to realise how practicalities were making it hard to achieve, we knew the time had come to move on.

I’ve hugely enjoyed every minute of the last six years and at the risk of self-importance I think there’s one thing we can be genuinely but collectively proud of: the sense of community among the TFT family of writers, readers, and commenters. We have often disagreed on issues but we’re united on what really matters: the good of the game of cricket as part of the fabric of English life.

Before I go, I need to say an awful lot of thank-yous – to every single person who’s ever taken time out of their day to read our posts or take part in the discussions, either as commenter or guest writer. There are too many people owed thanks for me to risk trying to name everyone – as I’ll inevitably, accidentally, leave important people out. Nevertheless I really must express my gratitude to Dmitri, The Leg Glance, and Tregaskis, for their endless advice and support, but most of all to James, not only for putting up with me for all these years, but for running the blog single-handedly during my regular and lengthy periods of absence.

But as James says, this isn’t really goodbye, but hello – to a shiny new blog which will harness the spirit of TFT and take it into all kinds of exciting territory we never previously dared explore. I will be popping in whenever I can with guest posts, or just joining in the chat. 

See you at



  • Sorry to hear this guys but looking forward to the new blog….as a Spurs, NFL, rugby,cricket fan I’m looking forward to it!!

  • Sad to see the Full Toss end. You’ve been great to work alongside in the last 18 months and you played a massive role in helping me to develop both HDWLIA and now Being Outside Cricket.

    Going to miss you lot, a lot.

    Good luck with the new venture.

  • Only found you guys this summer and have been hooked on everything you guys write.
    Thanks for the pleasure you have given me . I have told so many of my friends that this blog is where it is at. You have consistently nailed it.
    Good luck going forward with the new venture and the new family.

  • Thanks guys – have very much enjoyed reading interesting cricketing opinions and interesting debate at lunchtimes. All the best!

  • Thanks guys. The debate will still go on but at the new domain. Maxie will still write the occasional article & we hope the same people will comment. I hope! The main difference is that I’ll be driving.

    We did think about simply continuing TFT but without Maxie as co-editor. However I just didn’t feel it was the right thing to do. The blog has been half him and half me, so it wouldn’t be the same if it was just me flying solo.

    I’ve also been keen to write about other sports for a while, so running a blog called ‘The Full Toss’ (a cricket expression) seemed to narrow. Hopefully the old community will thrive at the new domain. There will still be lots of cricket chat!

  • All good things come to an end. My love for the England cricket team ended last year after 40 years when they sacked KP. Congratulations on your new baby Maxie and all the best to you and James for the future!

  • Congratulations Maxie on your great news. The most wonderful thing that can happen. Really hope you’ll at have time to contribute, as I’ll miss this old place, even if I didn’t comment often.
    Congratulations to James too, on your new baby. Will check it out tomorrow during the test, and I apologise in advance if I blow raspberries any time someone mentions golf or rugby!

  • Thanks to you both for the time you have spent on this blog. Always informative and thought provoking. A top effort when you balance work and a family life, with a hobby you are so passionate about. All the best fellas! Forever England!

  • Adieu TFT – I will miss it. Good luck to you both with your new commitments and, most of all, thank you both for all your work – I’ve loved this site.

  • Very sad, I’ve not known about th site for six years but it’s been a regular haunt for cricket. Thank you.

    Afraid I won’t join the new forum because I’ve completely lost interest in all things football, golf etc. they are simply what cricket will become, only cricket will never be as big or rich.

    • Don’t worry. There will still be a lot of cricket at the new site. Mostly cricket probably :-) just ignore the other stuff.

  • Feel genuinely sad! This has been a wonderful place. Really appreciative of all your efforts and amazing writing. As we were let down by others you rose to the top. Hope all goes well with your new adventures

  • Well done Maxie. You provided an alternative voice when it was needed most by people who were fed up with the bullshit that was being provided by the in house ECB media. In many ways we lost the battle, but won the argument. You only have to look at the numerous people that eventually were shown the door despite much support from the ECB and their media chums. Clarke, Flower, Downton, Moores etc etc.

    When someone leaked the famous dossier that had been compiled by the Flower regime documenting every move and twitch by KP you knew we were proved right. You fought a great rear guard effort against the forces of greed and reactionary self interest. Just the fact that a platform was provided to give that alternative voice pissed off the establishment and their cronies more than they will ever admit. They wanted a nice cushy little world with no scrutiny, and you made sure they didn’t get it. When the head of the ECB has to go on a major broadcaster and ask a comentator to not criticise the England captain you know how rotten the system had become.

    Well done mate, and enjoy your new baby, and new life.

    • Thanks :-) We won’t let bad cricket administrators get away with it, just because we’re writing about bad administrators in other sports too … I’m sure you haven’t seen the last of Maxie on the web

  • I seem to have something in my eye.

    I can’t say I have always agreed with you but I have checked your site every day since discovering it (Australia v England Ist Test 2013) and you will be missed more than you can imagine.

    Thanks for all you hard work.

    Oh, and as has been suggested above, I don’t think there are any sports other than cricket (maybe Aussie Rules?)

  • Ave atque vale.

    Thanks for providing some much needed grit in the rather flaccid oyster of cricket commentary.

  • Sad thing to come back to on a Sunday evening after a weekend away, but as a father of twins I know what kids do to your time (and your head)! I’ll certainly miss your insight and reason and will continue to follow the new site. I hope it goes well and thanks for all your efforts in the last few years – I remember what a breath of fresh air it was to find TFT about 3 years ago, and it’s testimony to your effort and abilities that it’s remained so.

  • Been a regular lurker for a couple of years now, will be sorry to see the site go.
    Thanks and all the best with everything.
    You do realise James that any forum involving football will quickly be overtaken by idiots. You’ll have your work cut out being a full time moderator!

  • Many, many, thanks, everybody, for your extremely kind words. They are hugely appreciated. It’s always been the positive feedback which has made it all worthwhile.

    See you all soon at EMS!

  • I’d like to add my personal thanks to Maxie and James. They gave me a platform to publish my ramblings early in 2014, and were never anything more than totally supportive and encouraging.

    I wish I could have made a larger contribution, but the two of them were always quicker and more insightful than I could ever be. It is astonishing how they maintained such voluminous output at a consistently high quality.

    Maxie and James were opposite yet entirely complementary influences on this blog. Maxie driven by a relentless integrity in the face of some pretty mean-spirited responses. James, the pragmatic, everyman figure who added equanimity. Maxie, perhaps like me, the more intense personality, balanced by the “hail fellow well met” qualities of James. They shared common values and deployed them differently. They were the Yin and Yang of cricket blogs.

    When a door shuts, a window opens and I wish both of you my very best wishes in the new projects you have each chosen.

    • Cheers Gonthaar. I’ll keep an eye for that. I’m actually sold into another security package at the moment, but it won’t last forever. I’ve transferred it across to the new site.

  • Thank you guys for the class articles all along at TFT and looking forward to your new site! Wish you luck!

  • A belated thanks Maxie for all your contributions here. I was first drawn here by your interview with Jonathan Agnew and since then have thoroughly enjoyed reading yours and James differing view of events without always agreeing with them!
    I must say I’ve particularly admired the graceful and patient way you’ve dealt with some churlish comments from the usual suspects who sadly are also not above using Twitter to make snide remarks about you.
    I shall certainly be following James new blog. Hope you manage to find time to contribute occasionally

  • Thanks for everything. A great website, and you should both be very proud of what you’ve created.

    Will be following the new site with interest, and all the best.


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