Alan Tyers goes behind the scenes
Andrew Hilditch, gibbering and shaking nervously, called the meeting to order.
"Fellow selectors," he said. "We have some decisions to make."
"Too right," said Jamie Cox. "I'll get the raffle tickets. Boony, can you drag that big barrel over here and we'll stick them in."
"Right you are mate," said David Boon. "I'll just finish drinking it first."
A few seconds later, the firkin was dry. Cox finished writing names of possible bowling candidates on the ripped-up pages of Mitchell Johnson's autobiography Lion Of The Left (published by Tattoo Press, Aus$19.99 or £138.54).
"Look, how about this bloke as a third seamer?" suggested Hilditch. He passed a CV over to Boon. Boon read it:
"Pete Blimey. He's 23, he's from Woolongobba Gorge, he's a plumber by trade but he gets it down there at a decent clip for his pub side and he's free for the rest of the month."
"Sounds like a live one," said Hilditch. "Stick his name in the barrel, Boony."
"Aw, no, hang on," said Boon. "He's a left-armer."
"No good," said Hilditch. "Can't have him showing young Mitchell Johnson up."
"Here's one," said Jamie Cox. "Young, slow left-armer, doesn't give it much of a rip, hasn't taken too many wickets, but looks a good competitor."
"What's the availability like?
"Yeah, pretty good," said Cox. "School holidays coming up, but we'd probably need to get the parents along to chaperone."
"Young Daisy Smith, eh?" said Hilditch, glancing at the résumé. "Looks like she could be a big personality in the dressing room. Incredible mental toughness for a nine year old girl. Maybe it'll rub off on some of the current rabble."
"Aw, no," said Cox. "She goes to ballet lessons on a Saturday morning. No good."
"Look, what if we sent Dougie Bollinger to the ballet classes in her place and she comes and bowls at the WACA?" suggested Boon.
"Alright," said Hilditch. "Probably worth a shot. Now, how about this guy?"
Cox read out the CV: "Fat bloke, 40s, enjoys McDonald's chicken burgers, playing cards, watching TV."
Hilditch picked up the phone.
"Shane? Alright mate? You busy? Good. Now, we were just wondering…"
WG Grace Ate My Pedalo, a Victorian cricket annual by Alan Tyers and illustrated by Beach can be ordered here and here. All quotes and "facts" in this article are made up (but you knew that already, didn't you?)
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