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There is a famous poem in England for remembering the wives of Henry VIII: "Divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived". Recently a similar chant has rung around Pakistani playgrounds. "Sacked, quit, fired, sacked, quit, retired" is a simple way of remembering the last six captains of the national team, although the nature of the job means it has to be updated on average every six weeks. Less a poisoned chalice than a mug of tea that punches you in the face and jumps on you until you are a bloodied pulp.
South Africa team psychologist
Ever wondered why you haven't seen David Blaine around lately? Rumour has it that he was employed by Cricket South Africa to put to bed the choking phenomenon with some of his Jedi mind tricks. Unfortunately, it proved too big a task for him to take on and he now becomes a blubbering mess any time he hears the words Duckworth and Lewis. Not really a job, more a life sentence.
England team barber
Not that long ago, this was one of the most affluent jobs in Britain. Keeping Kevin Pietersen topped up with various dyes and straightening Stuart Broad's hair was a full time occupation. Now both have shaved their heads to go with the new team ethos, led by Andrew Strauss, who is finding it takes longer and longer to wash his face. Matt Prior is the final insult - no hair means that your services are never required. Thickening Alastair Cook's lustrous bouffant will not put the kids through school.
Matthew Hayden's publicity officer
"Okay, so what are we going to release today Matt?"
"Matt Hayden would like to talk about his company, The Hayden Way."
"It's okay Matt, I can change it into third person when I write it up."
"Matt Hayden knows that."
"Right. What do you want to talk about?"
"The leisure-tainment side of the business."
"Okay, we can do that. There is just a small issue. That isn't actually a word. It doesn't mean anything."
"Of course it does. It fits in with my humanitarian and philanthropic values."
"Listen, we have been through this before. You don't actually know what that means do you?"
"Look mate, I want to play cricket again to promote my company. Just sort it out in a crictabulous and batastic way, will you?"
Shane Warne's beautician
Well, would you want to be in charge of ironing that face?
Test match umpire
When a postman delivers a letter to the wrong house, is he forced to announce it in front of the whole village? That's what umpires have to deal with in the DRS days. There is even a signal that essentially means, "I made a cock-up." The crowd boo and jeer. All that is left for the umpire is to return to his crappy hotel and cry himself to sleep.
New Zealand travel agent
If you are getting paid a standard salary, this is an excellent job (if a little dull). Unfortunately, most travel agents work on commission. Apart from the World Cup, which everyone kind of has to attend, New Zealand are currently scheduled to spend the grand total of 10 days playing cricket outside their own country in 2011. In Australia, so your profits there are useless as well. Essentially you are going to have to try to shave a couple of dollars off a Wellington hostel to put bread on the table.
WIPA/WICB press release writer
Definitely not a 9-to-5 job. Whenever someone comes home after one too many rum-and-cokes, you must be on hand to release their ramblings to the press. General bitchiness from both sides means that you can never be entirely confident that your working day is finished. Every job has a silver lining, though - before dictaphones and emails, you would have had to hand-write Chris Gayle's 3629-word opus. Just think of the writer's cramp.
Steve Coleman blogs at The Blockhole
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