Thanks to some Pulitzer-worthy investigative journalism (OK, like all cricket scoops, the doc was accidently put under our hotel room door) we have some exciting news. The Straight Hit has obtained an email that will shake the cricket world to its core…
…Gary Ballance’s handover notes to England’s next Test drinks carrier.
The scapegoat for England’s Ashes failure, despite not playing a game, Gazza nevertheless remains the consummate modern professional. Read on…***
From: Ballance, Gary
To: Vince, James; Livingstone, Liam; Foakes, Ben; Overton, Craig; Crane, Mason
Subject: Handover notes
Monday, Mar 12, 2018 at 11:33
Hi Vincey, Livingstoney, Foakesy, Overtony, Craney
Hope you’re all well. While I’m really enjoying my secondment back to Yorkshire, I’m very jealous of you guys out in New Zealand right now. But you know what they say; “a strong Yorkshire means a strong England”, so it’s good to know that I’m still directly contributing to the team’s success, just like I did in Oz!!!
Anyway, it’s important that I brief you about the ins and outs of carrying the drinks out to the lads in the middle. At least one of you will end up doing the job over the next few weeks during the series against the Kiwis.
I CAN’T STRESS HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO GET THIS 110% RIGHT. In the era of marginal gains, this is a vital job, perhaps second only to shining the ball for Jimmy and Stuart, or recording a humourous tour diary for social media engagement with the fans.
So pay attention, here’s my top 5 tips.
- Run to the middle as fast as you can: the boys need their isotonics, so make sure you get there pronto. You can analyse your performance afterwards by watching the replays on TV. They say that the camera adds 10 lbs on you – it’s weird though, TV also makes it look like you run really slowly. I could have sworn I was running as fast as I could during the Ashes.
- Take some gloves out to the middle with you, even if not requested: debating whether the gloves need to be changed will add valuable time onto the alloted drinks break, meaning that the guys batting can rehydrate more effectively. Plus, it almost feels like you are actually going out to bat! Almost. Almost…
- Don’t give Alastair Cook too much water: he doesn’t sweat, remember? I forgot this once. He swelled up to 300% of his normal body size and Chris Tremlett mistook him for a medicine ball.
- Don’t pour drinks over the batmen’s heads: this is known as ‘doing a Warner’; it’s not big and it’s not clever.
- Root is the captain, you must give him whatever he wants: weirdly, whenever we get onto talking about T20 and the money we can all make, he always mutters something under his breath. It sounds like “I really want shot of Bailey’s”. I know my elite batting skills would just disappear into thin air if I’d had a few, but Joe knows best.
Do these five things correctly and you too could be recognised as England’s premier beverage wallah. The boys even gave me a nickname because I was so good: The Waterboy. What a great bunch of chaps!!!
Good luck and do me proud. It’s like I always say, “ask not what your country can do for you, but what electrolyte levels are most appropriate for increasing the chances of an international daddy hundred”.
Any questions, you can get me on 07777 777777.
PS – the mantra with sports drinks is “don’t get high on your own supply”, otherwise this kind of thing can happen…