Part two of the Despicable Australian XI. This time, and oversupply of wicket-keepers and some very strange bowlers
Greg Matthews: For a couple of years in the late 1980s Greg Matthews really was Villain No1 in New Zealand. For a start, he was a bit odd, wore way too much zinc and scored seriously ugly runs against Sir Richard Hadlee in his pomp. He was an Aussie battle who achieved above his ability, and that’s our domain.
He was also a cheat, as demonstrated in the inside cover of the DB Annual of 1986; claiming a catch off Hadlee (of course) in front of a classy bunch of Eden Park spectators. That was the series when he had a toilet seat thrown at him.
His later career of a hair-growth ambassador was hilarious.
Greg Dyer. Onto the wicket-keepers then. And this is where the Australian derision becomes just so easy. Two of them make this side, and there is not even room for Ian Healy; that’s how tough the competition is.
That catch down the leg-side off Andrew Jones in the Boxing Day test of 1987 was as comically bad piece of cheating as you are likely to see. Sure enough, Bruce French gave him out. To Cricket Australia’s credit, Dyer didn’t play a lot after that.
Brad Haddin: It is cheating a bit to include two wicket-keepers, but that seems appropriate. Speaking of cheats; here’s Bad Brad.
He hasn’t learnt humility or decency or anything like that; a couple of weeks ago he was spitting in Virat Kohli’s face; going on about a badly executed run.
And then there is his wallpaper stripping voice…
Mitchell Johnson: MJ hating is typically more of an English than a New Zealand thing, but there is this piece of genius entrenched in the psyche. Seriously; head-butting a guy wearing a helmet?
There’s that Davey Warner intellect effect that we all love so much coming into play again.
Three beamers to the same batsman across several years (Brendon McCullum) is not accidental; it’s actually pretty nasty.
No amount of subsequent Bollywood cheesy music videos should ever mask that fact.