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Dhoni harasses press
Having proved his critics in the media wrong after unexpectedly routing the Australians in the Test series, MS Dhoni has adopted a combative approach to dealing with the press, often responding to questions with barbed, condescending ripostes. But he isn't stopping there. According to sources, Dhoni has taken to following members of the press home on his motorbike, heckling them all the way about how "you were wrong and I was right", and pausing only to thumb his nose at them while breaking into a particularly childish rendition of "nanny nanny boo boo."
"It doesn't end there," said one senior editor. "In the morning when I come out of my house, I sometimes see him waiting for me, calling me names. He's become this insufferable bully." The editor said he was considering getting personal security and having his number changed, as he was tired of the calls at midnight. "I'd recognise the sound of that heavy breathing anywhere" he said.
How England won the day in Auckland
England's heroic draw against New Zealand can apparently be attributed in no small part to superstition. Two of the ways in which Cook and Co ensured England held on for a draw are as follows:
Cook looking anywhere but at the action as the match entered its final stages on day five. He looked into a giant hand mirror instead, which provided the happy added benefit of letting him pluck his eyebrows while keeping an eye on the game behind him.
Cook and coach Andy Flower looking anywhere but at the computer screen, especially at the ICC Test rankings page, which showed that the team they were struggling to draw against was ranked second-to-last in the world.
Fans savour classic Afridi innings
Pakistan may have lost the final ODI against South Africa, and with it the series, but fans could at least take heart from one undeniable fact: they had witnessed a classic Shahid Afridi innings.
"It was amazing, worth the trip from Lahore just to see the three balls he faced," gushed one breathless Pakistan fan, one among many who thronged the ground in Benoni to see their hero bat for a whole minute.
"When he had faced as many as two balls, there were rumblings in the stands that maybe he'd lost it, that maybe lala was going to score another big one and thereby compromise that feeling of excitement and adrenalin a short, useless innings of his provides," the fan said. As it turned out, the master didn't let the faithful down. In classic Afridi fashion, he did what only he can do like no other: swing wildly and with eyes closed at a length ball, which ballooned up for a catch, leaving the maestro out for yet another immaculately crafted zero off three balls.
"Oh, classic!" roared the more knowing fans in the crowd, high-fiving one another and secure in the knowledge that though they might be losing the game, they had got their money's worth.
Mr And Mrs Cricket
None other than Mr Cricket himself, Mike Hussey, has been asked by his wife yet again to drop his adopted surname and reclaim the one she originally thought she'd be taking on when they tied the knot. "I'm sick of being called Mrs Cricket," said Amy Hussey-Cricket. "I don't see why I can't finally go back to being married to Mr Hussey, now that Mike's no longer married to the game."
Mr Cricket, for his part, said he'd give it some serious thought.
"Wow, I'm going to miss her," he said at last, though it couldn't immediately be ascertained whether he was referring to the game or his wife.
Nice to see kids at Test matches, missing school - experts
It's nice to see so many kids attending Test matches instead of being at school, agreed commentators and observers at a recent Test match that owed at least half its attendance to students who had been given free tickets to the game. "It speaks volumes for the health of the game that youngsters take and sustain such an interest in this format, at the expense of getting an education that might one day provide them with the opportunities they need in life to lift them out of this dreary, mind-numbing existence," said the delighted ICC chief, Dave Richardson.
R Rajkumar tweets here
All quotes and "facts" in this article are made up, but you knew that already, didn't you?
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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