Swanny tells it like it is

You’ve got to love Graeme Swann. If there’s a spade in the room, the chances of him calling it a shovel are zero. When interviewed about Michael Yardy’s withdrawal from the World Cup yesterday, the world’s premier off-spinner, fans’ favourite, and general good egg, said what all England’s players (and most fans) have been thinking for a long time:

“Players can get into pretty dark places on tour … as international cricketers we are frequently away from home for months, often playing fairly meaningless matches scheduled purely to put silver in the coffers of some cricket board”

Here, here. Swann is always great value – which is one of the reasons we love him. After arriving at the World Cup after the birth of his new baby in February, he explained how one day he’d tell his child that he wasn’t around in the first days of his life because he was proudly serving his country … playing the Netherlands. Priceless.

Swanny’s comments are certain to ruffle a few feathers at the ECB and the ACB. Whether he is reprimanded remains to be seen. However, we wouldn’t be surprised. If there’s one thing that sporting bodies love, it’s fining players who point out their mistakes and incompetence.

In other news, Australia crashed out of the World Cup yesterday after losing to India. Don’t say we didn’t tell you. Ponting’s boys lack of a decent spinner was always going to cost them at some stage – and so it proved.

I very much doubt that Mark Waugh reads this blog, but we’d like to remind him that he tipped England to go out in the group stages and Australia to progress deep into the tournament. Guess what Mark, we’re still fighting for the trophy (at least for a couple of days) and your miserable lot are on their way home.

Ah, the benefits of being drawn in the fourth quarter-final. Whatever happens on Saturday we can always say we reached the final five of the World Cup (ahem).

James Morgan


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