|Issue No 43||24 February 2000|
The Locker Room
Noel Hesterís Kiwi Power
Under the hotel room door? That's the oldest trick in the book. Workers Online has stumbled on the real form sheet of the men from the Shaky Isles. Sure, it's one-eyed, but so's the author.
Stephen '007' Fleming
AKA 'Do Things By Halves' got his name - not through association with the Bond wordsmsith - but for his stumbles in sight of a ton. Hence - 'Oh, Oh, seven to go. He's going to choke,' we mutter darkly. 007 has the worst conversion rate in world cricket with 22 half centuries and only two centuries. Fleming is developing into a fine captain though and, at only 26, is on the cusp of surpassing Geoff Howarth's record of 12 test wins. Much better to watch than Justin Langer.
C.Z. 'The Master' Harris
Cric-Info dubbed this man the Black Caps Tricky Situations Master. And as the Black Caps tricky situations usually kick-off the beginning of each innings C.Z. should be opening the batting and the bowling. As it is he probably won't even play in the tests!! Still holds an unshakeable psychological advantage over the Australian bowlers since his epic 130 n.o. in the world Cup 4 years ago. And forget about Saqlain's doosra what about the Chris Harris snoozer. You don't need a speed camera to measure the velocity of this killer ball. You could probably knock up an oil painting of the delivery between release and impact (and give it time to dry). How many batsmen have got the sleep out of their eyes to find their stumps shattered by a snoozer (well ok, one stump sort of totters for a long time before falling). Makes Mark Waugh look express.
Matthew 'Shall I Retire Now?' Sinclair
Currently the leading batsmen of all time with a test batting average of 214 - more than twice that of the next best, the Australian Don Bradman and nearly four times that of last year's flavour Sachin Tendulkar. A classic strokemaker on the field and a dignified presence off it. Definitely not an Aussie. Outed about the contaminated half of his gene pool he responded with style - by reaffirming his allegiance to the Black Caps.
Nathan 'Luke(warm)' Astle
A hot and cold player but on song he sizzles. The 1999 New Zealand Player of the Year averaged 58 plus in the tests against South Africa and India at home last year and 51 in the one dayers against the Proteas. Astle has 5 test and 7 one day centuries to his name and is a more than useful trundler. Like many of the kiwis grows another foot at home.
Darren 'Kiwi' Lehmann
The Black Caps secret weapon. Yes, Darren's grandmum came from Invercargill!! Well if the new New Zealand Government is as committed as they say they are to a better New Zealand, and surely that must also include a better test cricket team than we had to endure under the last tyranny, than they'll arrange for Darren's grandmum to have come from Invercargill and fast track Darren's naturalisation before February. Welcome home Darren and godspeed! (And as a kiwi cricketer you can eat as many pies as you want. We'll settle for boundaries.)
Chris 'I've got a memory like an elephant and I'm gunna f....... choo-choo you' Cairns
Once Mr Perpetual Potential. Mr One Day I'm Going To Be The Next Big Thing, Mr One Day To Be the World's Best Allrounder. Now nearly 30, at last, Mr Happening Thing!! Wisden's Allrounder of the Year and Man of the Series against both England and the West Indies. One to profit from Steve Rixon's hard nosed Australian approach ('Chris, get your sledging technique right and everything else will fall into place').
Daniel 'Scarface' Vettori
New Zealand cricket's renaissance man - his nickname is a product of pimples rather than a blade. Scarface already has almost 100 test wickets at age 21. At 21 Shane Warne thought a flipper was pinball jargon. Along with Parore gives the Black Caps some multicultural cred and the (slim) chance to join the Asia-Pacific anti-Aussie coalition. Widely expected to capture 750 test wickets before he retires at age 50. Not a chucker.
Mathew 'X' Horne
Stroke Hornnnnnny! Imitating the Aussies takes you to some strange places sometimes. Not a bad opener and definitely better than some of the non-entities we've had during the dark ages post-Edgar and Wright. If he can fire, with Shall I, 007 and a strong middle order to follow life could be long for Chukka Lee and the Nong from Narromine.
Craig 'Attitood' McMillan
Attitood has a test average of -take a deep breath - MORE THAN 40!! A one-to-watch from the kiwi tour 2 years ago when he more than matched the Aussies for attitood. Up and down since than - sizzled in the warm-ups to the World Cup but fizzled in the tournament proper. Still one to watch.
Adam 'Pin Up' Parore
A model who plays a bit of cricket on the side, Pin-up took the most dismissals in test cricket last year - 39. Between fashion shoots he has also fashioned a reasonable record with the bat having scored nearly 2500 test runs. He gives this puppy team a waggly tail. A world class number 9. Makes Adam Gilchrist look ugly.
Dion 'Angry' Nash
Every good sports team need a thug (and here we could digress to the woes and tribulations of the All Blacks. But let's not go there.) Step up Dion Nash. A bit liteweight on cricketing finesse and fast bowling firepower, but a good contributor to the team reservoir of testosterone and aggro. Recently has stood up as an effective foil for a rampaging Cairns. Could make the snickometer sing. Ignore the injury reports - a disinformation tactic picked up from America's Cup campaigns.
Shayne 'Sweet Chariot' O'Connor
Sure to be wheeled out if Steve Waugh hits the 90s. Skittled old Shaky Nerves with a beauty at the WACA 2 years ago when he was sitting on 96. Would be as fast as Brett Lee if he chucked.
Interview: Parting Gestures
Outgoing ACTU president Jennie George looks back on her time at the helm and charts some challenges for young women in the union movement.
Unions: While We Were Sleeping
Itís been a long hot summer for Australian workers - from the showdown in the Pilbara to the victorious National Textile workers. We look at the stories Workers Online missed while we were in the banana chair.
Media: Freudian Slips
The coverage of Jennie Georgeís final days as ACTU President were a case study in the art of psycho-tabloid.
Legal: Cookiesí Fortune
The breakaway union led by a man personally backed by the Prime Minister has been refused registration in a ruling that raises questions over the whole enterprise.
Politics: True Deceivers
In his controversial new book, Andrew Scott argues that Labor's rhetoric has outstripped its achievements.
Review: Rebel With a Cause
A new Michael Moore has emerged at the frontline of subversive television. His technique? Combining organising with silly suits.
Satire: Victorian ALP shock: "Apparently We're in Power!"
A recent survey conducted by the Victorian State ALP has revealed that the party is in government.
International: Right Hand Drive
The rise of the extreme Right in Austria carries some important lessons for our own society.
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