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Dec 11 – Go West!


The Aussie Team is feeling bouyant in it’s new-found circumstances of being front-runners and fear merchants.  The short turn around between tests must surely count in our favour as we head west to the home of the mining boom.

As soon as you arrive in Perth, there are three things that strike you:

 – At 10 in the morning, the airport is full of bogans in hi-viz jackets drinking expensive boutique beer or tumblers of  Moet et Chandon

 – The architecture reflects an abundance of cash and a complete lack of taste. BHP’s new headquarters seems to have ignored the great buldings of the world for inspiration, and instead looked to the humble milk carton for ideas of shape and form. It’s slab side faces the beautiful Swan River and seems to say “Who Cares? I’ve got lots of money.”

 – No-one drives a Holden

The fact that the WACA pitch is hard, fast and bouncy doesn’t strike you, as it is pretty much as expected. The same goes for the weather. Blistering hot temperates – over 38 degrees – are predicted for the first four scheduled days of the Test.  It looks like it will cool down to 30 deg for our day at the beach on Tuesday, assuming we can wrap this up in 4 days.

The England team are reeling after their rather unexpected catastrophe in Adelaide, and from the price of dining out in Perth.  As for the coffee, the mining boom has a lot to answer for apart from the demise of the Australian car manufacturing industry.

goji_berriesOne of the strangest things we saw in the Hay Street Mall this morning was a guy looking a bit down and out, selling goji berries by the bag from a card table outside one of those “$2” shops. I’ve always wanted to try them , and struck up a conversation with him.  They’re entrepreneurial types in the West, and this guy bought up every goji berry in the state the day after the England Team’s menu requirements were released. He was about to sign a lucrative contact with the catering department at the WACA, the price of said berries having spiked over the last two weeks, when it all came tumbling down on Monday when the England Team decided it needed a different dietary approach in order to turn around their fortunes.  There now isn’t a pork pie to be had anywhere in this fine city, according to my informant.

As for the goji berries, all I can say is that they had better be good for you.

The focus at training was all about the bowlers getting their length right on the notorious pitch. There wasn’t time for much else – Coach2.0 is most concerned to keep the bowlers fresh after the triumph in Adelaide.  The Natural was seen hobbling around for a while, which sent a scare through the camp and the press corp. Not to worry – word is that Jacka, the perpectual 12th man for this series, put a drawing pin in The Natural’s left boot in a purile attempt to dislodge him from the team – or at least to get his (ie Jacka’s)  name in the papers. The bats had to face up to the stand-by bowlers – they both bowl 10kmh faster than the England bowlers, so hopefully everyone will be sharp come Friday.

Meanwhile, do us all a favour and punch the first person who mentions “The Fremantle Doctor.” It’s not a wind, it’s a lot of hot air – the locals haven’t used the term since 1956.

Song of the Day: Go West by The Village People


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