Australia pretend that Shaun Tait or Mitchell Johnson might play

Australia have announced their squad for the first Test and made much of the fact that it contains no fewer than six pace bowlers. 'It's a terrifying arsenal,' they cry. 'Look out for the heavy artillery,' they warn. 'So who's actually going to play?' ask England.

Because of course, Australia aren't going to pick six quicks. They seem to be overlooking that. Glenn '70mph' McGrath will be playing. Brett 'bowling average of 41.10 in the last Ashes' Lee will be playing. Shane 'I'm actually a batsman really' Watson will be playing. This leaves one spot.

Is it going to be young, once-in-a-generation Mitchell Johnson who's already made a great start to his international career? Will it be Shaun Tait, who originally looked crap, not all that fast and admitted that he didn't care where the ball went; but who has now embraced accuracy and is actually capable of bowling at 95mph?

No. It's going to be Stuart Clark, isn't it? He's 31. He's accurate/dull. He did well against South Africa in his last series.

Stuart Clark will be fulfilling the Jason Gillespie/Michael Kasprowicz role during this Ashes series, ie, waiting to be dropped.

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Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Stuart Clark's middle name is 'Rupert'

Lots of cricketers have faintly embarrassing middle names. Stuart Clark is one of them.

We hope we're not going to start picking on Stuart Clark now. We seem to have lost that part of the brain that tells you whether doing something's a good idea or not and stops you if it isn't.

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Brett Lee out of World Cup

WE'RE disappointed and we're English. Australian fans must be gutted. Brett Lee must be inconsolable.

There are always going to be players who miss out on the World Cup through injury. From a fan's point of view, regardless of allegiance, you just hope that it isn't the most exciting players.

One man's loss is another's gain, however and Stuart Clark will get the call. Fantastic as his fledgling Test career has been thus far, he's no replacement for Lee who's got that all-important one-day knack of making a huge difference in a short space of time.

You can't stifle the batsmen with repetitive length in one-day cricket. It's actually a weakness to be too predictable. Stuart Clark's a great bowler, but his strengths contrast markedly with Lee's.

Brett Lee will have to pass the time with sponsored fun, as in the picture. Wow. He's clearly having a fantastic time, isn't he? We wish someone sponsored our fun. We'd earn pence.

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Friday, February 23, 2007