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Alan Tyers goes behind the scenes

The Department of Predikshuns

Pidge and Hughesy draw up a cunning plan

Alan Tyers

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Glenn McGrath signs his autobiography <i>Line and Strength</i> for fans, Adelaide, September 4, 2008
"Can I put 10-0 all along the border here? It's for the next series as well." © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Merv Hughes | Glenn McGrath
Series/Tournaments: England tour of Australia

A fax machine beeped excitedly. A tall, niggling fast bowler awoke with a sudden start.

"Five-nil, mate," he shouted. "I reckon we'll win five-nil."

"All right there, Glenn mate?" asked Mervyn Gregory Hughes. "You seem a bit bewildered."

"About half-past six," said Glenn. "I mean… erm… no mate. I'm right on the money. And I wasn't asleep. I was just resting my eyes so as I could mentally visualise us giving the Poms a hammering even better."

"Too right, mate," said Merv. "God I hate Poms."

"Me too, Merv," said Glenn. "Apart from the nice ones, obviously."

"Less of that traitor talk, Glenn mate," said Merv. "Now, we've got a lot of mindgames to get through, so we best get to work."

"Right you are, Merv," said Glenn. "What we need to do is think up something that'll get inside the Poms' heads, really rattle them. Something clever and psychological, like to say. Like five-nil. But even cleverererer."

"How about if we called Andrew Strauss an arsewipe?" suggested Merv.

"Oh, that's good stuff, mate."

"A Pommie arsewipe, even better," said Merv.

"Brilliant mate. We're going to win five-nil. Six, even," said Glenn.

"Too right, Glenn. Now what's on that fax, then?"

Glenn walked accurately over to the fax machine and picked up the piece of paper with metronomic precision.

"It's from Warnie, mate. He says he's told the Poms to stop being so arrogant and cocky, like we agreed."

"Good work from the thin lad there," said Merv approvingly. "Now let's get to work on a statement telling them not to be beer-swilling, uncouth, heavyset yobbos."

"With moustaches," said Glenn.

"That's right mate. Beer-swilling, uncouth heavyset yobbos with moustaches."

"I'll start preparing a statement, boss," said Glenn.

"Good work, Glenn," said Merv. "You get the crayons, I'll get started on these tinnies."

RSS FeedCheck out a free sneak peek of Alan Tyers and Beach's new book WG Grace Ate My Pedalo here. All quotes and "facts" in this article are made up (but you knew that already, didn't you?)

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Alan Tyers
Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.

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Alan Tyers Alan Tyers writes about sport for the Daily Telegraph and others. He is the author of six books published by Bloomsbury, all of them with pictures by the brilliant illustrator Beach. The most recent is Tutenkhamen's Tracksuit: The History of Sport in 100ish Objects. Alan is one of many weak links in the world's worst cricket team, the Twenty Minuters.
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