This, that and the other. Mostly the other
Series/Tournaments: Indian Premier League
A New South Wales cricket watcher has chosen to forego the lucrative IPL in order to focus on watching cricket at the highest level. Twenty-two-year-old Brian Nichols says his Test match-watching form has suffered significantly as a result of his involvement in viewing the Big Bash and New Zealand's HRV Cup, and he hopes to rectify several technical deficiencies with a county stint watching Northamptonshire first-class matches.
"I think as a cricket watcher you always dream of watching well at Test level, especially here in Australia, and my inability to knuckle down and sit out the tough spells has really been disappointing," Nichols said. "I've struggled with leaving the remote early on and have poked at it in the channel button repeatedly. Once, I missed an entire session watching a Kardashian marathon."
Nichols said he first noticed a problem with his Test watching during the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, when he was disappointed Ed Cowan's first scoring shot on day one at the MCG wasn't a switch-hit over long-off. But he says he didn't fully realise the extent of damage Twenty20 had done to his Test-watching form until day five of the fourth Test in Adelaide.
"I found myself being really surprised when my eardrums didn't explode from the commentators' shouting after a boundary. In my head I was thinking: 'It's like the blokes calling this game aren't even pretending the No. 10 can score a double-hundred to take his team to a victory. They didn't once talk up a tailender with a batting average under 10 as if he were Don Bradman on crack.'
"I think that's when I knew I needed to get back to the basics of long-form cricket watching again, and the eye-stingingly dull, absolutely hype-free environment at Northamptonshire should give me plenty of opportunities."
Nichols believes his time at Northants will be a lesson in patience and endurance and will bring confidence back into his game watching. He says he is excited about fitting into the environment at the county.
"Northants watchers clearly watch the game with a lot of passion, and I can't wait to be part of that. I know from talking to others who have watched Northants that they have a terrific set-up where humans are free entry if you bring more than one dog, which I like."
Northants president Lord Naseby said in a statement that he was ecstatic at Nichols' decision and believes the cricket watcher would be a fantastic addition.
"Northamptonshire has needed fresh watching talent for some time now, and we are excited about what Nichols has to offer," Naseby said. "He has already made clear his keenness to help maintain the canine-to-human ratio at Northants matches, and I have no doubt he will fit in well."
Nichols' IPL franchise, the Delhi Daredevils, issued a statement expressing their regret at having lost him.
"While we respect Nichols' decision, we hope he will return to watching the franchise in the future," the Daredevils said. "He has been a particularly active follower of our team, and our cheerleaders in particular will miss the stalker's notes written in blood, and the late, heavy-breathing phone calls."
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