IPL on YouTube? Ermm..Nope!

YouTube made big news earlier in the year when they said they would be live streaming the 2010 IPL tournament on their website.

Today saw the start of the IPL tournament. Massive anticipation around the globe. Cricket fans flocked excitedly to their nearest web browser (or stole someones Wi-Fi connection) to be greeted with this:

YouTube IPL Cricket - Fail

YouTube + IPL = FAIL

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EXCLUSIVE: Agnew and Boycott – The Lunch That Took Twitter Down

Earlier on today Jonathan Agnew posted the following message on Twitter:

Jonathan Agnew Tweet: Now to lunch with Geoffrey Boycott. What have I done to deserve this?

This single tweet caused so much activity that it forced the popular social networking site to go offline for most of Thursday afternoon. Twitter claimed the outage was due to a denial of service attack but we’ve been told by unnamed sources within Twitter that  it was actually the overwhelming number of people sending Aggers sympathetic messages that caused the Twitter servers to collapse under the sheer volume of tweets.

Clearly the Agnew/Boycott lunch was something that people wanted to discuss so we sent our undercover agent to the unnamed restaurant (for legal reasons) and he managed to plant a microphone under the table just seconds before the duo arrived.

Here is the exclusive transcript from their lunch date*


(shuffling of chairs)

WAITER: Good afternoon, gentlemen. Can I get you a drink?

AGNEW: Hello XXXXXX (removed for legal reasons). I’ll have a sparkling water

BOYCOTT: Water? What’s wrong with you, man? Water is for washing. I’ll have pint of Tetley’s. Proper Yorkshire beer, is that. None of your Southern fizzy lager nonsense

AGNEW: Well actually, Geoffrey, I’m from Macclesfield

BOYCOTT: See? I told you. Soft Southern fairy

WAITER: So a bottle of spring water…

BOYCOTT: Poof

WAITER: …and a glass of Tetley’s for sir

BOYCOTT: And it had better come in a jug. With handles. Proper pint pot.

WAITER: I’ll see what I can do, sir. And what would you like for your meal?

AGNEW: What would you recommend, XXXXX?

WAITER: Well, sir, the foie gras is a popular choice with our customers and the gulls’ eggs with celery salt is simply divine

(sound of chair legs scraping on floor followed by unknown object crashing onto floor)

BOYCOTT: Phwoar what? We’ll have two steaks. Proper mans food. We’ll have meat and none of this phwoar grass business

WAITER: But fois gras is liver of goose…

BOYCOTT: Two steaks! Have you got that?

WAITER: Two steaks and how would you…

BOYCOTT: Well done. Now get our drinks. And make sure it’s a proper pint pot

AGNEW: That was a bit embarrassing, Geoffrey

BOYCOTT: Rubbish! You wouldn’t know embarrassing if it hit you on the head with a wet kipper. I’ll tell you what embarrassing is. I remember playing a game for Yorkshire against Middlesex in 1962 when Vic Wilson, who were captain at the time, forgot to pack his box and had to go out to bat with an egg carton stuffed down his Y-fronts. He took a quick single off the bowling of Fred Titmus. Now he was a proper spin bowler. Not like that Harpyjama Singh fella. Like I told that Aussie fella the other day, it were proper spinners back in my day…

WAITER: Your drinks, gentlemen

AGNEW: Thank you, XXXXX

BOYCOTT: What do you call that?

WAITER: Ermm..it’s a pint of Tetley’s, sir, as you ord…

BOYCOTT: Where’s the bloomin’ head on it?

AGNEW: Geoffrey, don’t make a scene

BOYCOTT: But there’s no bloody froth! I want froth on my beer! Take it back, son, and bring me a proper beer with a proper head!

(there is a pause in conversation for several minutes)

WAITER: Your beer, sir

BOYCOTT: That’s more like it. Proper head on it

AGNEW: Good grief, Geoffrey. Is there any beer actually in there?

BOYCOTT: Proper froth. Proper Yorkshire froth. Not like today’s chemical froth. This is froth from good, honest, hard working Yorkshiremen

(a further pause in conversation punctuated by occasional slurping sounds)

AGNEW: I say, Geoffrey. Have you seen those two ladies over there?

BOYCOTT: Where?

AGNEW: To your left

BOYCOTT: They’re alright, I suppose

AGNEW: Alright? If I were a single man…

BOYCOTT: And a good few years younger

AGNEW: Yes. Thank you, Geoffrey

BOYCOTT: Come on, Jonathan. I can’t see why you’re making so much of a fuss. Look at them. All covered up like that. Back in my day we used to play with uncovered bitches. That were the real mark of a man. You had to get your length spot on and you didn’t have someone on a computer telling you if you had a problem with your length. Not like today. I get hundreds of emails every day promising to help me out with my length. You never had that back in my day. You had a problem with your length and you had to get a grip and sort it out yourself

WAITER: Your steaks, gentlemen

AGNEW: Thank you, XXXXX

(a grunt is heard from an unknown source)

WAITER: Bon appetit

BOYCOTT: Bloody foreigners

(Pause in conversation. Sounds of cutlery on china plates)

AGNEW: Ermm. How’s your steak, Geoffrey?

BOYCOTT: S’alright

AGNEW: Only mine is a bit…ermm…tough

BOYCOTT: Tough? Tough? Call that steak tough? Steaks were much tougher back in my day. That’s not a tough steak, man. Hedley Verity would have made mincemeat out of that steak. My grandma would have eaten that steak without complaining and she had no teeth. Honestly, you youngsters don’t know how easy you’ve got it these days

AGNEW: Geoffrey, all I’m saying is that my steak…

BOYCOTT: Look in Wisden

AGNEW: I’m sorry?

BOYCOTT: That’s OK. Apology accepted but look in Wisden

AGNEW: What’s that got to do with anything?

BOYCOTT: Our listeners, who know about steak, will already know the answer to this. They’re knowledgeable people. They won’t need to look it up but if you don’t believe me, get out your copy of Wisden. The facts speak for themselves

AGNEW: All I’m saying, Geoffrey…

BOYCOTT: Wisden

AGNEW: …is…

BOYCOTT: Wisden

AGNEW: …my steak…

BOYCOTT: Wisden

(A loud sigh is heard from an unknown source followed by ten minutes of silence. Sound of cutlery on plate. Piped music can also be heard)

WAITER: And how was your food, gentlemen?

AGNEW: Well, XXXXX, my steak was…

BOYCOTT: It were alright. For modern food. Not as good as the steak I had on my first tour of South Africa back in 1964. They had uncovered beaches back then. Proper beaches. Not like today

WAITER: Ermm, yes. Would you like coffee?

AGNEW: A cappucino, please, XXXX

WAITER: And for you, sir?

BOYCOTT: None of that foreign muck. I want Tetley tea. Proper tea. From Yorkshire

WAITER: I believe they’re owned by an Indian company now, sir

BOYCOTT: Aye well that’s as maybe but I’m sure they’re still using Yorkshire tea leaves

WAITER: Very well, sir

(A further pause in conversation. There is a change to the piped music in the background)

AGNEW: Oh, this is one of my favourites

BOYCOTT: What is it? I can’t tell with all this modern music. All sounds the same to me

AGNEW: Oh come on. This is an old classic, Geoffrey. A traditional folk song. You must have heard this before

BOYCOTT: Sounds familiar but I can’t place it

WAITER: Your tea, sir

BOYCOTT: What’s this rubbish you’re playing on the gramophone?

WAITER: The song is called “Michael Row The Boat Ashore”, sir

BOYCOTT: And who’s it by?

WAITER: I believe this particular recording is by The Spinners

(there is a sound of crashing cutlery and china)

BOYCOTT: Spinners? They’re not bloody spinners! I’ll tell thee who were proper spinners. Bill O’Reilly. Clarrie Grimmett. Wilfred Rhodes. Johnny Wardle. I’ve done my homework. I know. This lot? They’re not bloomin’ spinners. My mum could play them with a stick of rhubarb

AGNEW: I think it’s time to go, Geoffrey. I’m sorry, XXXXX. Put this one on my account and I’ll settle up tomorrow

(sound of chairs scraping)

WAITER: Any chance of a tip?

BOYCOTT: Yes. Get in line and use soft hands. See thee later


Just in case you missed it, you can hear the Geoffrey Boycott v Matthew Hayden argument on TMS by clicking this link. Fast forward to about an hour in to get the full build up and then listen in to around 1’17″ to hear Our Geoffrey unplug his microphone in disgust.

* May contain traces of lie

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ICC World Twenty20 Starts Tomorrow

Twenty20 World CupSo after literally minutes of anticipation, the ICC World Twenty20 competition is upon us. Not only that but it’s the Women’s Twenty20 World Cup too. Be still my beating heart…

Forget the Ashes. This is what we’ve all been waiting for, right? Who cares about that silly, overrated Test match business. This is the real deal. World famous athletes at the top of their game going head-to-head in a bludgeoning battle of ball bashing brutality. If Bangladesh v Ireland doesn’t get your pulse racing then you’re clinically dead already.

Let’s not forget the ladies. Fresh from their success in the Women’s World Cup in Oz, the English lesbians ladies take on the moustachioed might of India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to fight for the right to spank New Zealand in the final. Again. My only concern here is that with 22 women on the pitch, who is going to make the teas?

Oh bollocks. Who am I trying to kid? I couldn’t give a squirrels scrotum about the next two and a half weeks. The chances are I won’t even bother watching it. It’s just another example of the I Crave Cash organisation trying to squeeze yet another meaningless tournament into the crowded international cricket calendar.

Want to stop global warming? Stop all these poxy tournaments. I’d love to know what the carbon footprint is for each of the international cricket teams. I’m no tree hugging hippie but I reckon that if you went back to the old days and made Australia travel by boat, the polar bears would have more ice caps than they could shake their left paw at*.

It seems utterly crazy to schedule in the Twenty20 so close to the Ashes series. To all those people who say “it will increase interest in the Test series”, I say you’re talking piffle. England v Australia for the Ashes shouldn’t and doesn’t need any kind of hyping up despite the best efforts of the ECB to ensure that only a tiny fraction of the country can actually watch the series.

So when Kevin Pietersen, Stuart Broad, Paul Collingwood and Jimmy Anderson get injured in the World Twenty20, are the ECB still going to think it was a good idea?

Still, on the plus side the boys at King Cricket are practically walking around with a permanent lazy lob as a result of Rob Key making it into the England squad, Andrew Symonds’ international career can now be officially classed as over following his latest drunken antics and let’s not forget our old friend Shoaib “I’ve got genital warts” Akhtar. Quite possibly the best excuse for pulling out of a squad I’ve ever heard. If only he had pulled out of the ropey old Doris he caught it from…

* all polar bears are left handed. Did you know that?

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Helmets for Umpires?

According to this article from Reuters, Daryl Harper is suggesting that Twenty20 umpires start wearing baseball style helmets to protect themselves.

Given the pace with which some of the players hit those shots, it’s becoming really dangerous for us. In one of the games, Sanath’s (Jayasuriya) shot hit me so hard that I was feeling breathless for a while. And (Matthew) Hayden’s hits have brushed my ears a few times as well.
Quote by Daryl Harper

Initially I thought this was a load of old bollocks but then, in a moment of clarity or, indeed, a rare moment of sobriety, I thought why not combine the helmet protection with some modern technology?

US F-35 fighter pilots now use a helmet which effectively allows them to fly the plane just by looking at data superimposed on their visors. They only have to look at a target and – whoosh – their goes another payload of friendly fire. So why not give the umpires a nice, shiny helmet to protect them from getting one in the face and also incorporate stuff like Hawkeye, Snicko, HotSpot and all that other stuff at the same time?

Not only would it protect the little loves from getting a nasty bump on the bonce but it would also improve their decision making. No more hanging around waiting for third umpires. No more LBWs when the ball has pitched outside the line. No more caught behinds off non-existent edges.

It’s genius, I tell you.

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Sunday Social Cricketers Wanted

I play Sunday social cricket and my team, Iver Heath CC, are looking for new players for the 2009 season. I’ve put an ad on Gumtree but I thought I’d see if any Flintoff’s Ashes readers fancied a few games this year.

Just in case you’re too lazy to click on the Gumtree link, here’s the ad:

Iver Heath Cricket Club was formed in 1947 by a bunch of alcoholics looking for something to do when the pubs used to shut on a Sunday afternoon. Sixty two years on and we’re still boozing!

We’re looking for new players to join our Sunday social side. Key requisites are:

* The ability to drink your own bodyweight in beer
* A photographic memory to recall outrageous umpiring decisions from years ago in order to bare long term grudges
* A sense of humour to enable you to take part in our sledging. Note: we never sledge the opposition, only our own players
* Cricketing ability would be nice too although not essential as we don’t want you showing any of us up!

We’re a friendly team who play our cricket hard but enjoy the social element of the game even more. We play our home games at the picturesque Farnham Royal ground which is between Beaconsfield and Slough. Most of our players live in the West London area so can provide lifts if you don’t have a car.

I couldn’t include a link to the Google map of our fixtures for some reason so if you wanted to see where we play, here’s a link – Google Map Iver Heath CC Fixtures.

If you haven’t got your own kit, don’t worry. We’ve just bought a load of new Woodworm kit (70% off – click on the Woodworm ad for more info) so can provide bats, gloves, pads and what have you. You’ll just need some whites.

Season starts this coming Sunday 19th so if you fancy a few games of cricket this year and one or two glasses of sweet sherry after the match, drop me a line.

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