Speaker by Various Artists

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Part 12: Match state = drinks

by Aye Calypso 2

Time to take stock. After a loopy opening session, a coach is dead, and there's a media whodunnit playing out (Roy and HG are suggesting CSI Jamaica). Most of the world's fans are in mourning, since unbelievably, India and Pakistan are gone. Ireland and Bangladesh are not. They are basking by the hotel pool of dreams. But take a photo, it'll last longer: they are soon to be stampeded. And the world champions are back in some nick, bigtime.

Enough, you know all of that. Thankfully, from our distant shores, Rupert Murdoch and the curvature of the earth will ensure we don't burn out or overdose actually watching games. But history tells New Zealand fans not to save themselves for the finals. Put in the hard yards early. Secretly anticipating the worst is not only part of our national character, it's good for your mental health: samurai philosopher and cricket stalwart Yamamoto Tsunetomo recommends meditation on inevitable death be performed every day. We'd best visualise repeat flayings from the bat of Kallis, annihilation from searing Malinga bullets, hopes erased by rubbery infield contortions of Pup Clarke. And perhaps we should ponder Bondy dislodging limbs from our own boys in the nets.

Soldier on

On that note, Stephen Fleming isn't concerned about recent injuries and the shuffled lineup. Speaking from his hospital bed last night, he's confident that sending over more of the Northern Districts squad as cover should mitigate the teething problems with the new training method of wearing blindfolds in the nets. Seriously though, nobody seemed woebegone when Tuffey's arm came unstuck, but we thought Gillespie would recover more quickly from his, er, paralysis. We are plain anxious about the hammie of Ross the Boss. We're ravaged by grief at the loss of Mad Dog Vincent. However, Chopper Reid says it best: 'Harden the f**k up'. We are kiwis, by god. Number eight sodding wire. Chris Harris came out to bat at the SCG with his shoulder rotator cuff torn off. Jake Oram was willing to have a finger off for the cup. So Vincent can be fixed, his broken wrist married up, made good to go. Just a couple of titanium bolts and some magic water. Surely Hamish Marshall could donate a forearm.

Alex Gilks

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