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Agony Aunt

How to invest your IPL millions

Questions of cricket gnawing at your soul? Our agony aunt provides soothing answers

Trish Plunket

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Stuart Broad shows his surprise after taking a return catch, New Zealand v England, 2nd Test, Wellington, 3rd day, March 16, 2013
Mental disintegration tactic 23: De Niro impressions never fail to disturb the batsman © Getty Images

I have just landed a million-dollar contract in the IPL. What's the wisest way to invest all this money? asks G Max
Damn it, Jim, I'm a cricket fan, not a stockbroker! The wisest way I can think of investing it is in a tin under your bed. That way your new-found wealth won't fall prey to dodgy ex-millionaires, corrupt corporations, or the next time the world's finances collectively tank.

The other tried-and-true option is to squander it all on sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll. While I am professionally bound to advise against this, let me say that if I were getting paid squizillions to play a few games of cricket, I know what I'd be doing with the money.

We at the NBA are very interested in having Mohammad Irfan play for us. But we have heard the Pakistan board is often temperamental. What is the best way to approach them to request sending him over for trials? asks basket_cases
Money. It will always come down to money. Pony up enough and you should be fine, since your plan to poach the absurdly lanky Irfan is significantly more legal than shifty bookmakers and News of the World phone hacks. The PCB will drive a hard bargain, so go to the table with your haggling face on. Wait, you're not Indian are you?

What does Brendon McCullum eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner? Do you think it's a good idea to use him to clone the first human? asks starved athlete
Whatever he's eating, it's not what Mohammad Irfan is (7'1"!). And I haven't had reason to enquire what Baz eats for breakfast - not for want of trying - but I have a few guesses. It is likely to be the rubbery scrambled eggs that are the staple of hotel buffets throughout the land.

Lunch will be whatever they are served at the ground. I have it on good authority this ranges in quality from average to nasty, but given you're starving you'll be pleased to know the quantity is more than adequate.

Dinner? Well, I'd like to imagine Baz is the embodiment of healthy eating, but the man has two kids, so he will have eaten his share of soggy oven fries and chicken nuggets off plastic plates while watching the Disney Channel. Really, he eats food. Obviously. He doesn't photosynthesise.

While the idea of having multiple McCullums is appealing, I'm not sure the bowlers of the world are ready for that. Or the general male population - I know you lads would like to stand a chance of keeping your girlfriends.

I need some mental-disintegration tactics to use on the Aussies as we warm up for the Ashes. Can you give me some tips? And if I wished to take a full-fledged course in it, is there a former player you could recommend I approach? asks Pom-pom
Are you sure you need mental-disintegration tactics? On the former-player front, Ashes-winning captain Michael Vaughan seemed to just stand there looking like someone nicked his lunch money, and people are still crowing about that win.

And really, you're asking for help sledging. Don't pretend you're exploiting the human condition when, in fact, you're just being a jerk.

A lot of your team is ridiculously good-looking. Perhaps you could have Stuart Broad or Chris Woakes bowl shirtless and see if the Aussies are so distressed by their possible internalised homophobia and the ensuing cognitive dissonance that they give away their wickets. See, that's mental disintegration.

If you must remain fully clothed, I want to see some surrealism brought into sledging. Imagine looking up, having just missed the ball, to see a fiery fast bowler getting in your face and saying: "Have you ever wondered what your tongue tastes like?" Terrifying.

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Trish Plunket is a grumpy old man. Except she's not old. Or a man

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Posted by Dummy4 on (March 17, 2013, 6:56 GMT)

To which countries should Sehwag and Gambhir apply for a citizenship now as Murali and Dhawan are making runs on the top?

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