All the world's cricketers walked into a bar. The LOLs, the chatter, and the occasional mini-brawls, they were endless. And the news cycle was never the same again! Welcome to ESPNcricinfo's Social Buzz, your go-to destination for all the bantz, the jousts, and little bit of eavesdropping from the social media playground and beyond.
How do you prepare for a match with the biggest pot of prize money your sport has ever offered? If you're the reigning world No. 1 in women's tennis, the answer is fairly obvious.
Ahead of the WTA Finals decider, where she could win $6.5m, Ash Barty preparing by playing some cricket pic.twitter.com/lYcObR9F9c— Tristan Lavalette (@trislavalette) November 3, 2019
And it worked! Australia's Ash Barty beat Ukraine's Elina Svitolina 6-4 6-3 in the WTA Finals in Shenzhen...
... prompting some current international women cricketers into a bit of a rethink.
Knew I should have been a tennis player not a cricketer... cheers mum. https://t.co/EXWgb0KwFw— Alexandra Hartley (@AlexHartley93) November 3, 2019
Rugby World Cup final brings out KP's true colours
South Africa claimed their third Rugby World Cup with victory in Yokohama on Saturday, which pleased at least one former England cricketer...
What a performance by The Bokke!— Kevin Pietersen (@KP24) November 2, 2019
HEART, PASSION & PRIDE!
Sometimes that's all you need to be successful!
To be fair, KP has never pretended to be English (he just worked there). Less surprising were the congratulations from Pietersen's old sparring partner, former South Africa captain Graeme Smith. Let's hope the current Proteas were watching.
Unsurprisingly, there was a little bit of schadenfreude among the Kiwi observers...
And as always, Jimmy Neesham popped up with the last word:
Japan's thought of everything this World Cup, even guaranteeing you'll get a great wifi signal while receiving your medal pic.twitter.com/ljd82RKSvW— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) November 2, 2019
The gloves are off for Billings
Best laid plans— Gray-Nicolls (@graynics) November 1, 2019
You might have been expecting @SamBillings to be in the Off-Cuts Gloves last night
Unfortunately, the gloves don't conform to ICC regs for colour
So Sam wore a pair of gloves from @CricketExpresNZ, picked up by our former colleague Josh prior to the game pic.twitter.com/RDfcmK6gkL
Looks like things turned out all white in the end for Sam Billings...
The Black Cap supporting England at the (Rugby) World Cup
New Zealand have suffered repeatedly at the hands of England over recent months - losing the 50-over World Cup final, a Rugby World Cup semi-final and now the opening T20I in Christchurch - but allrounder Daryl Mitchell will still be rooting for them on Saturday. That's because his dad, John Mitchell, is England rugby's defence coach, and hoping to help them to another world title when they take on South Africa in Yokohama.
"Yeah, I'l be supporting the old man," Daryl said, after scoring 30 from 17 balls in New Zealand's seven-wicket defeat. "It's obviously an exciting time for the family and hopefully he can win the World Cup. I keep in touch with him a fair bit, as you can imagine he's absolutely fizzing for this weekend and hopefully they can get up."
Despite working with England, Mitchell senior will be wearing his Black Cap when the cricket is on. "He said he was going to try and give a few of the England boys a bit of stick when they're sitting there watching it together. But he loves his cricket, so it's quite cool." If England can win the rugby, and New Zealand Sunday's second T20I in Wellington, the whole Mitchell family will be happy.
A great 24 hours for... the run-out law
Every other month, one of cricket's umpteen rule technicalities makes the headlines, which is remarkable given the game has been played for the best part of two centuries at the highest level.
The latest such section is the run-out law. Usually, it's as simple as: batsman is short of his ground, fielder or bowler throws down the stumps or knocks off the bails.
But what happens when the bails have already been knocked off by the batsman smashing the ball?
So what did Cummins get right that Sandakan didn't? Get the ball to make contact with the stumps after removing them from the ground.
Things are getting out of hand in Australia, though, with bowlers doing it for fun when there's no need whatsoever.
New Zealand challenge England again, this time with bat and boat
Jimmy Neesham can't stop, won't stop, trying to pull one over the English, this time with some help from Lockie Ferguson. After New Zealand lost to England in the Rugby World Cup, Neesh and Ferguson challenged a couple of English fans to a kayak-off… with cricket bats for oars.
It went exactly as you might have expected. At one point NZ dropped the nice-guys act and proceeded to attack the England kayak with their boat, only to lose by their largest margin yet.
After the cricket and the rugby came the kayaking as Blackcaps stars Jimmy Neesham and Lockie Ferguson took on a couple of English cricketers playing in the local leagues. The result didn't change though. In fact it might have been the biggest margin of the lot. pic.twitter.com/cnpgfjciAG— Dean Wilson (@CricketMirror) October 29, 2019
Lucky kid bags David Warner's gloves after his maiden T20I hundred
Talk about getting lucky. It was David Warner's birthday two days ago, and he celebrated by giving himself, and his team, a fantastic gift - a 56-ball 100 that gave Australia a rather emphatic win over Sri Lanka in the first T20I in Adelaide. And Warner was evidently in a giving mood. Not only did he donate his player of the match cheque to charity Zaidee's Rainbow Foundation, but on his triumphant walk back to the dressing room, he dropped his gloves in one lucky kid's popcorn bucket. That look on the kids' faces says it all.
PNG, and 'one of modern cricket's amazing feel-good stories'
Papua New Guinea made history on Sunday, earning tickets to a senior World Cup for the first time when they beat Kenya to earn a direct berth at next year's T20 World Cup. It was big news all right, and Ian Bishop and R Ashwin, among others, recognised the feat for what it was.
It's not news that may be resonating with as many fans around the world as it should But the fact that Papua New Guinea have qualified for their first Men's T20 World Cup in 2020 is one of modern crickets amazing feel good stories.— Ian bishop (@irbishi) October 27, 2019
Missed all the chatter last week? Catch up on it here.