So I thought it might be fun to do an Ashes diary, but from my perspective (bearing in mind I am a pub landlord, so staying up watching cricket all night is definitely not helping with my 200 hour working week!) as there are numerous diaries being kept by players and journalist alike who are currently enjoying 30 degree heat in Brisbane, while I am in Llandudno where it is a cool 2 degrees!
I will try to be informative about my goings on, my reactions to the events unfolding at the Ashes, my eating habits and how long I actually manage to stay awake before succumbing to the sandman and some well deserved shut eye.
Firstly let me set the scene (so you know from what situation I will be watching the Ashes) I have a 50” TV (not showing off, just setting the scene), Sky HD for crisper viewing pleasure, I have my laptop open in front of me with tweetdeck on the screen and Football Manager 2011 minimised ready to be played at anytime (I’m playing as LFC (of course) and am in my 2nd season, played 22, on 40 points in 4th place only 4 points off Chelsea in 1st, thanks for asking) I also have an uber-large bag of steak flavour kettle chips and a pint of diet Pepsi (not a fan of sugar in drinks)
11.50pm: I lock the front doors of the pub having sent Watty home before we both missed the first ball, I prepare the snacks and drinks and take my seat, all the anticipation, the talk and the build up was finally over, I put a war-cry on twitter in case Swanny is checking his tweets.
00.01am: The first ball of the ashes is delivered by Hilfenhaus and well left by Strauss, I put a jokey tweet referring to Steve Harmison’s first delivery four years ago going straight to second slip and chuckle to myself!
00.02am: Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck!! Strauss edges the 3rd ball of the match straight into Michael Hussey’s hands….Brilliant, England are 0/1, I smell a sense of familiarity about this but remain confident.
00.45am: Finished my pint of diet Pepsi, wondering if I can be arsed to go get another, I can, and do. Starting to feel a little tired now so go and open a window and let some cool air in (as recommended on The Ashes Sportscast special featuring me, and George) Cook and Trott were in and we are 28/1, it was jittery at times but at least we haven’t lost another wicket.
01.15am: Trott plays and misses a straight one from Watson and is clean bowled, it becomes 41/2, amateurish batting from Trott, I’ll put it down to nerves and hope he comes back stronger, meanwhile KP enters the fold to a massive roar from the barmy army, hope his form is better than his moustache!
01.40am: Finally Xavier Doherty (X-Doh from now on) comes in to face KP, the aussies only picked him for this reason so it had better work, because other than KP’s frailty against left arm spin there simply isn’t another reason for X-Doh to play, he is at best a mediocre cricketer with both a poor bowling and batting average in first class cricket.
01.55am: X-Doh bowling at KP, KP sends the ball straight back at X-Doh and he shies to throw the ball back, no reaction from KP, next delivery X-Doh does launch the ball back towards KP, misses and almost overthrows for 4, the crowd enjoy it but KP just grins straight at X-Doh, what a plum!
02.00am: LUNCH and England are 86/2 after X-Doh dropped a dolly from Cook, I contemplate a bacon and cheese sandwich but really can’t be bothered, instead I have a game of FIFA 11 online, I play as Man City vs. Real Madrid (jwills86 – his gamertag) I take the lead after 4 mins with a cheeky little side foot from Adebayor (Mancini might not rate him but on FIFA I love him) Real equalise with a lucky rebound before I turn the style on and win 4-1 (Adebayor 4, 24 & 70, Milner 38) I celebrate with some crisps!
02.40am: Play gets underway for the second session, I am now officially getting tired, so I pause it and go for a quick walk to liven myself up for 10 mins I return and skim through to catch up and find a text that has been sent to the BBC website…
Jack: “Doherty’s inclusion is like playing Rory Delap in every game of the World Cup finals because a keeper ‘apparently’ has trouble with long throws. KP should be fine. (Prays I haven’t jinxed him).”…couldn’t agree more!
03.30am: KP is out to Siddle driving the wrong line and edged, England are 117/3 and to be honest, struggling. This is also the last real memory of live cricket I have.
07.45am: I wake up as Faye comes through to the lounge to get ready for work and I put Sky Sports news on, Siddle (who my brother Rob once said has a face you wouldn’t get tired of punching) got himself a hat –trick and finished with 6/54 (proving my brother right!) England all out for a below par 260.
So after watching brief highlights of what I missed I then watched Champions League highlights from last night and promptly have another 90 mins sleep before getting the pub ready for opening.
Turns out I could have stayed asleep because at 2.00pm I still hadn’t had one customer in…Fucking typical.
See you tomorrow.