Sport on TV: David Lloyd's curiouser ramblings killed the duck, not the cat

There seems to be an acknowledgement that England's Test series in New Zealand isn't particularly interesting. In a double Ashes year this might be understandable. The highlights on Sky Sports are only an hour long instead of two, and in the live transmission David Lloyd is on a campaign to keep viewers awake: "What time is it now? Twenty past 11? Have some discipline. Make a cup of coffee!" He's as manic as the White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland, but when he pops down the hole again to go Down Under next winter he won't need to keep reminding us to keep our eyes open for the Ashes.

The coverage is sponsored by something called the Fujitsu Heat Pumps Speedball, which sounds like a drug that will keep you up all night. In fact the action has been fascinating, and Lloyd is underestimating the slow-burning drama of the five-day format – surprisingly so, since Sky in the UK have done more than anyone else to promote Test cricket while most of the rest of the world is switching off.

Watching Cook, Compton and Trott compile attritional centuries is enough to put anyone to sleep, but that doesn't detract from the importance of their achievements.

In Wellington on the second morning (Sky Sports 1, Wednesday) there was a fascinating "game of cat and mouse" between Kevin Pietersen and the left-arm spinner Bruce Martin, during which Bumble saw fit to regale us with details of his "quiet night in": "I got some monkfish, salad, a glass of wine and some Jethro Tull," he enthused. It's a surprise the cat didn't leave the mouse alone and wander off to have a look through Bumble's bins.

The Kiwi pundit Simon Doull wasn't sure what Lloyd had meant when he said he was going off to his hotel room to "have a monkfish". And what sort of a beast is a Jethro Tull anyway? Lloyd was soon going on about Inspector Monkfish in The Fast Show, and he had lost Doull completely. It was getting more surreal than anything Lewis Carroll could have dreamt up. Perhaps the good inspector could shed light on the mystery.

Then Lloyd introduced another subject that would be of interest to a Lancashire cat, if not a Cheshire one: "I've got some sad news about the duck, the one we saw on its lonesome yesterday." He referred to a fowl that had dominated the cameras' attention as England crawled along on the first day. "Its mate was hit by a cricket ball and passed away." Perhaps he was merely covering up the fact that he would be preparing a nice little canard à l'orange in his room later.

* Watching Oscar Pistorius: What Really Happened (BBC3, Monday), you had to wonder how much more we can find out about this murky business before it even gets to trial. So here, in typically louche BBC3 fashion, we were regaled with tales of guns going off in restaurants, a pair of white tigers, crashing speedboats and the Blade Runner tweeting he had once gone "into full combat recon mode" when he heard his washing machine going.

So it seems there is indeed much more to come out. Here he is also alleged to have threatened to break the legs of former footballer Mark Batchelor after a row about women. Whether he is found guilty or not, it looks like Pistorius is likely to be a bachelor himself for quite some time to come.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
tech

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

News
There have been various incidents of social media users inadvertently flouting the law
news

Life and Style
Stack ‘em high?: quantity doesn’t always trump quality, as Friends of the Earth can testify
techThe proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
News
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
i100
Sport
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
footballCSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2: Premier League champions let two goal lead slip in Russia
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Head of Ad Sales - UK Broadcast

competitive + bonus + benefits: Sauce Recruitment: An award-winning global mul...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel your sales role is l...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £45000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Key featuresA highly motivated ...

Vendor Services Manager (IT) - Central London

£50000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Vendor Services Manager (...

Day In a Page

Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London