We love our cricketing nicknames. The sadness is that a lot of players just add ‘ey’ to a surname (yawn!), but there are still some cracking ones out there. Steve Smith, for example, is called ‘Piggy’ because he looks like one. Although maybe ‘Crocodile Tears’ would be better? There’s also ‘King’ Kohli but we’re rejecting that. Mainly because we prefer the following instead…
Michael Holding – Whispering Death
An all-time classic, talking about Holding’s run-up.
Shane Warne – Hollywood
Basically, because you loved him or hated him, and he was a crowd-puller. Oh, and nothing changed in his future years, including TV commentary, and, er Botox.
Sachin Tendulkar – The Little Master
No other reason given. No other reason needed.
Wasim Akram – The Sultan of Swing
Was it because of sub-continental background and brilliant use of the ball, or because the fans were massively into Dire Straits? All we do know is that with overcast conditions, batters were indeed in dire straits. Oh, and him and Waqar were indeed Brothers In Arms (I’ll get my coat).
Viv Richards – The Master Blaster/Smokin’ Joe
The ‘Master Blaster’ is fairly obvious, because every ball Richards middled went to Miami and back. Smokin’ Joe’ is an excellent cricketing allegory to Joe Frazier, one of the best boxers who ever was.
Rahul Dravid – The Wall
Made Dom Sibley seem like Virat Kohli, Viv Richards and Jos Buttler rolled into one. With more skill.
Jimmy Anderson – The Burnley Lara
One of the greatest No.11s that ever was. Simples.
Meg Lanning – Megastar
STILL the biggest name in women’s cricket. And when she finally retires, she’ll go down as one of the best cricketers in history, irrespective of sex.
Stuart Broad – Westlife/Malfoy
Both classics. Both true. We have another one too… see below.
AB ‘Superman’ De Villiers
Says it all.
Steve ‘Tugga’ Waugh
Yep. Got that one, thanks
Honorable mentions go to Ian Bell’s ‘Sledgehammer of Eternal Justice’, which was coined by a comedian in an effort to make him a better player. His cover drive is still the most sumptuous game. Apologies to Alastair Cook but ‘Chef’ was never gonna make it.
OK, so now let’s try some NEW England nicknames – both classic and current.
Stuart Broad – The Big Appeal
Because in our beautiful bowler’s estimate, everyone is out.
Jimmy Anderson – The Burnley Grump
Does he ever look happy?
‘Smirking’ Joe Root
Everything he does (when he’s talking to the bowler) seems to be done with a smile and a smirk on his face. Also, we’ve nicely ripped off the Joe Frazier moniker.
Johnny Bairstow – The Ginger Ninja
Basically, it’s more interesting than ‘YJB’, and truly worships his performance at Trent Bridge. And he’s fun in all formats.
‘Bashing’ Jos Buttler
Because of his antics in T20 and ODI . When he’s on a roll, the ball flies out of the park.
‘Biggie’ Ben Stokes (short for “Big Moment”).
We could have gone for ‘Basher’ but instead we’re going for ‘Big Moment’ because there doesn’t seem to be many of them that faze Ben Stokes. And we’ve also heard that Stokes is into 90s Gangsta Rap.
Jofra Archer – ‘Sicknote’
Ask Spurs fans over the age of 40, please.
Moeen “The Beard To Be Feard” Ali
He has a beard. And he’s feared. Simples.
Jack ‘Mr 1’ Leach
Because of THAT DAY AT HEADLINGLEY.
Dom ‘Snore’ Sibley
The most boring cricketer since Geoff Boycott.
David ‘Large’ Willey
Because I’m an absolute child.
Feel free to make your own suggestions in the comments.
Mark Waugh – “Afghan”.
Yep. The forgotten Waugh.
Tom Curran – ‘Fruity’ (because he appears as CURRAN T on the Oval scoreboard)
And going back a lot of years who could forget Slasher Mackay and Barnacle Bailey – two batsmen who rarely hit anything off the square, but would stay there for hours and hours.
Owais ‘Absolute’ Shah. You probably need to be above a certain age. And try saying it with a Terry Thomas accent.
Although an easy shot, describing Geoffrey Boycott as boring is as disrespectful to a great cricketer as it is inaccurate. What would we give for an opener as good as him now?
I also didn’t put him in because he was a convicted domestic abuser, and was unrepentant.
Not something I particularly want to get involved in but, since you’ve raised it :
1 He has always denied it.
2 His conviction was in a French court in which, for procedural reasons, he was not permitted to defend himself as he would under English Law.
Anyway, as I said not something I want get involved in, especially on a cricketing thread. I’m sorry you raised it.
The best all time nickname belongs to DI Gower. Or ‘Lubo’ to his friends.
Lubo’s is a steakhouse in Adelaide, I think. It was apparently Gower’s favourite.
Zak ‘creepy’ Crawley is a classic
What’s the purpose of nicknames?
To create a spurious sense of intimacy and affection towards people we’ll never meet….
Quite right Simple, me old mate !
Great point Elton!
Always liked the book about of couple of bowlers from the Edwardian era, Kortwright and Jepson called; ‘The Demon and the Lobster’ You can probably guess what type of bowlers they were. My favourite modern one is Giles, ‘King of Spain’ the result of a spelling error on a job lot of mugs ordered to celebrate the Ashes triumph. A good one for Anderson would be ‘The Count’ after Basie, ‘The king of swing’. Always liked Chris Old’s ‘Chilly’ as well, after his initials. I dread to think what Peter Wiley’s others were.
Did everyone just call him ‘P***k’?
Not to his face. He was a pretty hard bast***. Even Beefy didn’t cross him.
I draw your attention to my post published just over two years ago dealing with this very subject: https://aspi.blog/2020/04/28/all-time-xis-the-cognominal-clash/
There are some classics in that post, both good and bad. In particular, Jack Hobbs ‘the Master’, WG Grace ‘the Champion’ (among others), George Headley ‘Atlas’, Fred Spofforth ‘the demon’, Charles Turner, ‘the terror’ and William Lillywhite ‘the nonpareil’.
Legendary Times correspondent, the late Alan Gibson, used to refer to the Somerset bowler, Dredge, as The Demon of Froome, often shortened to The Demon or Our Demon.
I rather like Bairstow’s nickname ‘ Bluey’, for the striking colour of his eyes with all that red hair!
This is good to know about nicknames for your blog article.
I can see the list of indian cricket player
This name is beautiful in this blog article.
Slightly obscure one, perhaps, but I always thought one of the best was the former South African quick, Monde “all hands” Zondeki.
A West Indian friend is known as “Little Bird”. He used to be a fast bowler, and is “only” 6ft 5in!
Dom ‘Snore’ Sibley? Nooooo! He’s The Vicar.