Danny Morrison is one of our more successful exports. After briefly threatening to get a foothold in the NZ broadcasting scene 15 years ago to inflict his unique style on the cricket world in general, and Asia in particular.
His contempt for the idea of sticking to words in the dictionary is well documented, and the focus of most attention.
“He has phatted that downtown”
Then there is the imagery that just sounds wrong.
“Boom!! The man on the moon has a visitor, courtesy of Suresh Raina!”
“Guess what, this one’s got an air-hostess on it!” He even manages to make that one sound slightly inappropriate too.
But the underlying, consistent, trait in his utterances is the random nature in the construction of his sentences.
He gathers a series of comments, of varying relevance, and mixes the together. There is always heightened emphasis at some stage in his delivery, but that is also aloof from what he is actually saying.
Probably the most famous example of this was “Another Citi Moment of Success. Here. On a Wednesday.” No description of what has actually happened, and a gratuitous insertion of a sponsor, although he is not alone in that one. But at least he pointed out what day of the week it was, because that’s what really matters.
‘Old pistol! Paul Reiffel. There he is. All the way from Australia! Victoria! Played for the Vics. Melbourne man.’ Seven bullet point style sentences with an awful lot of repetition.
Jimmy Neesham takes a catch: “Neesham. Grabs It. What a Catch. And He’s Doing Movember”
Then there is the ability to completely forget what he was saying. From a couple of days ago. “Pakistan are 44 without loss. IN COMPARISON, .. as Nathan McCullum comes on with his off breaks…. Been around a while… Fine performer, in this format, for the Blackcaps… NEW ZEALAND, at the same juncture, were 34 for 3.”
Later in that match there was the need to call in the third umpire over a run out call. “Umpire Raza. Come upstairs with the little head wobble”.
Once again the unique talent to swap context mid-sentence. Starting as if addressing Raza, he then slips into the third person before finishing.
Thankfully he is over there, so the damage is contained, but listen out for more assaults on the English language during the forthcoming ODI series. You never know what you’re going to get.