Ashes 2013-14: Peter Siddle hungry to leave some banana skins in England's path

The Australian bowler eats 20 of the yellow fruit a day

Brisbane

What the modern cricketer eats is beginning to dominate this Ashes series. Following the revelations about England’s exotic dietary demands for their players during the Test series – piri-piri breaded tofu has never been more popular – attention has now shifted to Peter Siddle of Australia.

Siddle is the sort of up-and-at-’em, tearaway fast bowler whom you imagine to train on raw red meat while running over a bed of hot coals. The coals may still be a possibility but it turns out he eats 20 bananas a day and is a vegan.

“I live with a plant-based diet now, that’s my lifestyle,” said Siddle, shocking all those who wonder how he can therefore continue to bowl with such venomous fury. “My partner has been a vegan all her life.

“I’ve had a few niggles throughout my career and I did a lot of research about different ways to approaching my cricket and that’s the lifestyle I’ve gone down. I’m feeling fit and strong.”

This is hard to reconcile with Siddle’s background as a hugely promising woodchopper from a family of champion woodchoppers. He takes his bananas in all shapes, sizes and modes and it seems he buys them from the supermarket. He liked the suggestion of having a banana tree in his garden but then realised he was not at home often enough to eat them.

Siddle has become a staple in Australia’s attack. His constant effort is admirable, respected and admired by selectors and fast bowlers alike. Siddle is the sort of fast bowler who runs in all day.

He will for ever be associated with The Gabba, where he became the first Australian bowler to take a hat-trick on the ground against England three years ago. It put Australia on top in the match and it was impossible to tell then that the series would turn irrevocably England’s way when they made 517 for 1 in their second innings.

“It’s a highlight of my career but we play cricket to win Test matches,” Siddle said. Which, as Siddle well knows, is not something Australia have done much of recently, failing to emerge victorious in any of their most recent nine Tests.

“I think our team is a lot stronger,” he said. “We learnt things in England from the way we finished off. It was a disappointing result, we didn’t want to lose 3-0, but we know what we can do differently, we know how to approach it. There are a few things we needed to work on but we have them covered.”

Siddle, who took 17 wickets against England last summer, will be as combative and irrepressible as ever in this Ashes. England will always know of his presence and if words are exchanged – as they will be – it is unlikely that they will be swapping notes on diets. But you never know. A man who eats 20 bananas a day must occasionally long for a pumpkin seed and goji berry bar.

News
FIFA President Sepp Blatter reacts during a news conference in Zurich June 1, 2011
news
News
people
Life and Style
food + drink
News
peopleKatie Hopkins criticises River Island's 'seize the day' bags for trying to normalise epilepsy
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Nicole Kidman plays Grace Kelly in the film, which was criticised by Monaco’s royal family
film'I survived it, but I’ll never be the same,' says Arash Amel
Life and Style
Retailers should make good any consumer goods problems that occur within two years
tech(and what to do if you receive it)
Life and Style
healthIf one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
Life and Style
tech
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

The ZX Spectrum is back

The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

The quirks of work perks

From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

Is bridge becoming hip?

The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

The rise of Lego Clubs

How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
5 best running glasses

On your marks: 5 best running glasses

Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada