Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Proteas (Page 2 of 4)

Most Unimpressive Proteas

I am properly grumpy. I went to Newlands for the second innings of the third ODI yesterday and it felt like the Proteas were like me; all they did was arrive at the venue, not a thing more.

Really, on our way to the car last night R and I were in deep discussion. R suggested that had the Proteas won we would have felt different but I disagreed. It would have felt like an unjustified win. They deserved the loss. There is no other way to describe their performance but shockingly terrible. The Indian team didn’t have to do anything spectacular; the players just had to stick around and play a few good shots.

Now for all those ‘Proteas through thick and thin’ supporters out there, let me say at the outset that there were fabulous moments. One or two great balls bowled, one or two great catches, one or two saving moments; but theses took place in a sea of total disaster. I am going to list all the problems here in no particular order.

1. The fielding. Sorry, but do the Poepteas not actually have a fielding coach? The fielding this whole season has been a little less than mediocre, but last night’s fielding performance was a case study of how not to field. Dropped catches, misjudging the ball, bad running, bad calling, no accurate throwing, and a generally an air of indifference and apathy. Sies. Also, there was an abundance of that hand pointing motion that is my all time worst. The one where the ball sails past the fielder, who doesn’t move to get it but who gestures to the man on the boundary in a ‘it’s got your name written on it’ way. I cannot begin to explain how that ‘it’s not my responsibility’ action makes me see red! In fact, I think that in any game where there are more than three of those hand pointings, we are done for. Last night being a case in point (excuse the awful pun).

2. The captaincy. I am not denying Graeme Smith‘s skill as a batsman (when all of his fingers are fixed) but the guy has very little feeling for leading an ODI. Let him play his natural game and get someone (whose name is Hasheeeeeeeeeeem) to captain the side, gee up the boys, position the field, choose the bowlers and everything else that Graeme is just not managing as a captain. There. I’ve said it. His choice of field, bowlers, and energy and attitude on the field was beyond poor.

3. Teamwork. Pathetic. No support, encouragement, working together. The bowlers were on their own. They were totally unsupported. I would have lost it completely. As far as I was concerned Tsotsobe and Amla were the only two out there earning their salaries. It’s not good enough by a mile.

4. Attitude. This team literally gave up. No fighting spirit, no back against the wall comeback, no energy at all. The players attitude stank. There was no passion, no enthusiasm, no explosion of commitment. It was a dreary little affair. I would have forgiven them their loss if they had actually tried a little harder.

5. Lack of accountability. Sorry, but losing is somebody’s fault, problem, challenge. It’s not like the Proteas gave their best and were totally out classed on the field. They didn’t take responsibility for the game.

6. Spin bowlers. Will somebody please explain to somebody else in charge, and to Graeme Smith, that SA needs a proper spin bowler? Somebody good, like Harbhajan Singh. It’s not rocket science.

I was upset last night that I had made the effort to go and support my team. I (well my friend actually) paid good money to see them perform, which means that they need to do more than just arrive at the ground. Not cricket.

Cricket opinion? Just Shoosh!

It’s no secret. I don’t like cricket; I love it. But I do not love cricket analysis, commentary and writing. For a while I would read the M&G’s cricket writer (I think it was Tom Eaton) on a Friday, just to get a sense of what would definitely not happen on the weekend. He had the most uncanny ability to mis-predict by a few thousand kilometers. He was almost 100% wrong in everything he ever wrote.

I read gems about how the Proteas had a 97% probability of winning against India at Kingsmead because blah blah blah and India have never blah blah blah and and what’s more Jacques Kallis blah blah another double century blah blah blah. It made me nervous. Too much talking about how the Proteas were a shoe in. And they lost. Yep. They did.

But, in today’s Cape Times Zaahier Adams makes a three course meal and a christmas cracker of hilarious cricket writing. He writes, “Now, heading into the series decider at Newlands, which starts on Sunday, the Proteas are suddenly under pressure to maintain their proud record of not having lost (I kid you not) a post-isolation home Test series (here it comes) other than to Australia (four times) and England (once).” The italics in the above are my comments. So, Zaahier; I just want to get things absolutely straight. The Proteas have actually lost five post-isolation home Test series. And just to make sure we are talking the same language here; this is not a proud record of never having lost a post-isolation home Test series.

It’s not only the writer of the article who is talking kak. He quotes Proteas coach, Corrie van Zyl, as saying, “The Proteas pride themselves on their ability to bounce back, fight back when they are up against the wall.” Bounce back? Fight back? Up against the wall? In a series in which both teams have won one game? Come on! This is just nonsense; trite, non-speak.

And the caption under Graeme ‘Fingers’ Smith’s picture is exactly like the commentator’s curse. It reads “Graeme Smith can be expected to step up to the plate in the deciding Test against India.” Why? Why can we expect that? Hope, yes. Secretly pray, yes. Shout at the TV, umpires, beg that he can withstand a Sreesanth sledge, and hold your breath while he bats, but not expect. No.

I am not going to read anything cricket any more. It makes me gek. And I am delighted that I will be able to sit in the stands and not have to listen to the commentators get it so totally wrong either.

Same Old Same Old

And another thing that is leaving me stone cold and making me worried for my sanity is SA cricket. Maybe it’s just that the Proteas are playing Zimbabwe at the moment, and honestly, I can’t even pretend to care. I am just not my normal excited self about this upcoming cricket season. Don’t get me wrong; I still adore Hasheeeeeeeeeem and AB. I still have hope for Duminy and I enjoy Johan Botha. But, ag, I’m not full of cricket lus and gees.

Andre Nel, Ag Boet

I am a Johnny come lately to the latest sex skandaal, having only picked it up this morning. This time ex Proteas player Andre Nel has been bust having affairs all over the shop. I am sad for him and his wife. I can’t imagine how horrible it must be to have your dirty linen hung up on every TV, laptop and PC in the country, and probably the world.

I am also dismayed that another ‘sports hero’ and role model has been busted in this way. What is it with these guys? I have no doubt that there are many cheap and nasty psychological justifications for this kind of thing, but for me it boils down to a weakness of character that is seriously unattractive.

The latest is that he tried to commit suicide. How awful; especially for his wife. I imagine that he must be as low as any man can be right now, but to behave that selfishly is just outrageous. Come on sports heros. Harden the f… up. Take responsibility. Be men that everyone can be proud of.


Sandi and the Proteas didn’t. Survive, that is. But unlike the Proteas, who really didn’t ever look like they were in the game against a blazing India today, poor ole Sandi didn’t see it coming! And I felt quite sorry for her actually, unlike the unscratchable itch of irritation I felt for the South African cricket camp. Come on cricket strategists! It doesn’t take brain surgery to work out that a. we need to have some proper spinners in the team when SA play in the sub continent, and b. the Proteas need to know how to play against the Indian spin bowlers. Not rocket science. I am disappointed. Now, it’s time to thank Herschel and send him on his way, and JP Duminy needs to go back to the drawing board. I hate it when the Proteas go two nil down in a three game series.

Know what I think? I think the Proteas could learn some spin from the Survivor contestants. Shoo whee, how was tonight’s episode? What a lot of twisting and turning, back spinning, back pedalling, double talking, back stabbing blind siding and tension making stuff. That Timbila team scared me tonight! And Sandi Schultz was the sacrificial somebody. I think she just tried to keep too low a profile, and she got blitzed. Yo, and that Ashleigh Hayden plays a tough game. She certainly didn’t need those lovely reward pillows; I think she needed to stay awake all night every night to plot and scheme. And then there was poor Louw! His macho sensibilities got hurt man, and it was quite cute, and terribly transparent to see all that stuff at play. At least it’s out there, on the surface. Not like that Ashleigh! A snake in the grass, I tell ya, a real spin bowler.

I was quite freaked out when my favourite, Gys, had to go over to snake-in-the-grass team, so I’m relieved that next week will see the merger. Then it’s every survivor for themselves! Could start to get really interesting. Hmmm. Seems like I’m hooked again! Which is just as well, since I can’t watch the cricket anymore!

The Week that Was

It’s Friday morning and I’m about to go and walk the old ladies, Bayla and Gally, try and get to the damngym (I have been making a bit of an effort this year) before rehearsals, then rehearse, then perform a TheatreSports gig at a pre-barmitzvah thing in somebody’s lounge tonight. And it looks like the weekend will be full of work stuff too. And Big Friendly and I are going for a romantic 2020 game at Newlands on Saturday night!

But I thought I would take a couple of lines to reflect on the week that was.

TheatreSports had good one, with that fab show on Tuesday night, and a really successful corporate performance yesterday. We performed for a company that I had first performed for 16 years ago. They were our first corporate client! Love it.

Rehearsals for my industrial theatre project are going really well. I have been working for the same client for five years now, creating plays, based on the same characters, that go on a country wide roadshow, and I love it. I love my team of actors, I enjoy the process which we have honed into something easy and painless, and it’s the one sure gig I have that pays the rent! it is also the one kind of theatre that I know reaches its target audience, who love it.

I am irritated with our Prez and the country in general. Come on guys, this guy was voted in with a completely public track record of sexual expediency and polygamy! It’s not new  news. I’m just irritated that because he is the most important public servant, we taxpayers have to pay for this all. I am irritated that a red carpet was laid for the opening of parliament. I am irritated by the predictability and insincerity of our politicians, and the fact that their promises are totally empty and meaningless; a series of random placatory and warning words strung together and haltingly read out.

I am depressed that I seem to be enjoying pop music again, at my age. I catch myself with Lady Gaga as my earworm of the day. I am dancing to hip hop at my hip hop classes at the damngym!

I am delighted, and this should have been higher on the list, by the Proteas, who mafferated the Indians, on their home turf, by more than a total innings! I can’t wait for the next test to begin on Sunday.

Lots to reflect on, but it’s getting late and the dogs are milling about!

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