Ashes Diary: Thommo: Keep brakes off bowling and sledging
Thursday 23 December 2010
Given all this talk of sledging, it was only a matter of time before the Bankstown big mouth himself, Jeff Thomson, weighed in. And now he has. Thommo, inevitably, believes the Aussies should keep on sledging. "It's all part and parcel of the game," Thomson said. "You are just trying to upset the guy's concentration. You're out there for six hours, you get bored... you've got to say something."
The man who terrified most of the English team on the infamous 1974-75 tour also believes the home side should resist the temptation to call up a spinner. "Don't worry about a spinner. Just keep the quicks," Thomson told the audience at a lunch in Melbourne. "I think we can frighten the stuffing [or some such]--- out of those blokes."
English fans worried that Thomson might be right should take solace in the fact that he's not always on the mark. Take Shane Watson, for example. "I bagged him. He's lifted his game, Watson has been fantastic," he admitted.
Inevitably, Thomson couldn't resist the urge to talk up his own exploits. When he was asked about how fast he bowled, he said: "They came out pretty quick. I hit a lot of sight screens on the full. I wanted to be the quickest and scare everybody and I think I achieved that."
Sydney outlook dampens
Perhaps it's not the Melbourne weather we should worry about: the long-range forecast for the Sydney Test isn't too crash hot either, as they put it down there. According to weatherzone.com.au, there is a greater than 75 per cent chance of rain in Sydney on days three to five of the fifth Test and a "low" risk, 25 to 50 per cent, of rain on the opening two days.
Warne weighed down
Is there a single fast-food product that Shane Warne does not endorse Down Under? He was at it again yesterday, appearing in a charity match in a Victoria country town, Lethbridge, in a shirt adorned with the logo of a famous burger joint. Perhaps, though, he should lay off fatty foods: his bowling looked distinctly less impressive than we recall. No wonder he decided against a comeback.
Four warning for Aussies
Thommo might want Australia to pick four fast men but history suggests that might not be the smartest plan. Not since 1958 have Australia won a Test at the MCG with four seamers: that summer, they picked Alan Davidson, Ray Lindwall, Ian Meckiff and Gordon Rorke. Even then – and putting aside suspicions over Meckiff's action – they had Richie Benaud, a spinning all-rounder in the side. Can Steve Smith fill those shoes?
Swann gets his football fix
He looked a bit glum at the conclusion of the Perth Test match so it's good to see that Graeme Swann has recovered some of his cheek. After a weekend on which much of English football fell victim to the weather, he tweeted: "Good news football fans. The snow and ice hasn't stopped all this week's action. The Perth vs Adelaide game is underway."
Mario Balotelli scored as many goals for AC Milan on second debut as he did for Liverpool in the Premier League last season
Cyprus vs Wales match report: Gareth Bale's bullet header has Welsh on brink of Euro 2016
Jose Mourinho: Chelsea manager has four Guinness World records hanging in his office
Manchester United will pay Monaco £7.2m extra if Anthony Martial scores 25 goals in four years as deal could rise to incredible £58m
Pedro hits outs at Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal for treatment of Victor Valdes
- 1 What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
- 2 If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
- 3 The Chinese city where men have 'three girlfriends because there are so many women'
- 4 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
- 5 Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees