Friday, August 25, 2006

Waugh Stories

There's a nice thread currently running on 'Corridor of Uncertainty' about favourite cricket books.

A few posters have mentioned Steve Waugh's autobiography, with specific reference to its size and weight. To save you the physical exertion of leafing through this in your local bookshop, here's an exclusive excerpt from the book to give you a taster of what's on offer: -

(Taken from Part 8, Chapter 48, Page 794)

The first ball from Gough was well up so I played forward and it went out into the covers, second ball I left alone, and the third ball went down the legside - Gough was probably trying to hard as he was liable to do in the fourth over from the Nursery End during a morning session.

Next ball went into the covers for a single - I went down the wicket and told my brother, Mark, that he wasn't backing up far enough and that he'd need to go down to the practice area after he was out to measure out his optimal backing up distance for a bowler of Goughs pace and accuracy.

I then went back to the non-strikers end and psychologically intimidated Gough for a few seconds. I then turned to stare down Mike Atherton who was fielding too deep at mid-on. I remembered that Atherton had drifted about five yards too deep in the Sydney Test a few years before which meant that I'd managed to take a sharply taken two, rather than just a single, to a ball from Caddick - runs that took me from 45 to 47. I'd pointed this out to Atherton when he came into our dressing room for a beer after the game, and then again an hour later as the England squad were boarding their coach back to the hotel. Later I phoned Atherton at the hotel to remind him of our earlier conversation, but surprisingly, he refused to take the call. You should never be too proud to listen to advice.

Next ball my brother, Mark, slightly mistimed a cut and the ball bounced into the gully area where it was fielded by Craig White. This gave me another opportunity to continue our campaign of mental disintegration on White which I kept up until the umpire (David Sheppard, umpiring in his 65th test) came up and asked me to get on with the game. I did so, as I think it's very important to uphold the spirit of the game and respect your opponents at all times.

At the end of the over I went back up to White and continued the mental campaign with a stream of the specific verbal abuse that we'd agreed in our team meeting would have the best impact on a guy like White. (See Appendix XIV for a full summary of the verbal abuse used by the Australian team during this series, broken down on a session-by-session and player-by-player basis)


Anonymous said...

Hi This was linked on the Australian ABC website - very funny stuff. I am an Aussie and also one of Steve Waugh's biggest fans, but he often had a habit of taking himself too seriously (possibly still does), taken him off nicely.


phil said...


Anonymous said...

I genuinely thought this was real for a moment, hilarious