P&J Column 29.3.18

Sand-papering your balls? That’s just not cricket!

Cava Kenny Cordiner, the sports pundit whose balls have not been tampered with.

Regulator readers will know that I’ve never been the greatest fan of the smack of feather on pillow, but even my eyes pricked up when I heard about what happened in Cape Town at the weekend when South Africa took on Austria in the croquet.
When Melody shouted me through and says ‘wait til you see this, the TV cameras have caught some of them fiddling with their balls’, my first reaction was to tell her “fair play to the lads, sometimes, if you is wearing an aesthetic-support on a hot day, it can get right uncomfy”. Then I realised that they wasn’t just doing a spot of gentlemen’s redistribution, but they was trying to cheat.

What a glass neck they had! One of the Aussie lads had some “yellow tape” in his pocket which he was rubbing on the ball, and when he realised he’d been caught yellow handed, he stuffed it down his pants! The whole thing was seed by 30 cameras and now the offenders has been sent home with their tails hung low and their heads between their legs. Even the Austrian Prime Minister, Malcolm Tucker, has had a few words to say, though they was not as sweary as normal.

In this professional era, the steak knives is high, so it’s not much wonder that sportsmen do everything what they can do to gain an advantage over their opponents, and I know of what I speak of about. In my playing days I wasn’t no angel of the North myself – Old Kenny was known to break the odd rule, and opposing striker’s tibia, from time to time. Bending the rules in the heat of battleships is one thing – but pre-medicated cheating is a different kettle of ball games all together.

One of the commentators was saying, he says “they should throw the book at them”. They is missing a trick there, I think. What they should do is get all sandpaper, tape and mud, rough up one of the sides of the book, and THEN throw it at them!
View from the midden – rural affairs with Jock Alexander.

It has been a gastronomic wik in the village. I have been sheltering indoors, central heating on, reclining in my Friesian coo onesie, and getting through a shedload of rowies fit I acquired fae Feel Moira. She swears they had fallen aff the back o’ the Asdas at Huntly, and the fact that she had jist gi’en their loading bay a glancing dunt wi her tractor wiz jist a coincidence. Weel, I wiznae gan tae argue wi her, cos I wis keen tae avoid being the recipient o’ a similar quirk o’ fate masel, and perhaps mair importantly, I likes a rowie.

So too, apparently, does no less a personage than the film director Duncan Jones; son of David Bowie and Hollywood Auteur, fa took to social media last wik tae ask advice for hame-baking a batch of the celebrated north-east delicacy.

I had nae idea that fashionable media types even kent fit a rowie wis, let alone bothered getting their hands a’ mucky making their ain. Nae doot Duncan’s exclusive Islington neighborhood boasts mair than it’s fair share o’ fair trade coffee hooses and artisanal barbershops, but lacks a branch of Thains the baker. Jones awarded his finished foodstuff 7/10, deciding it probably needed “more salt”. Well Duncan, I could hae telt ye that. A’ ye need for a decent rowie is a big dodie o’ lard, and a even bigger dodie o’ sa’t. If ye think ye’ve got o’er muckle sa’t in it, then it’s time tae add mair.

Of course, Duncan’s high profile attempt reignited the online debate aboot fit the delicacy should be cried – Buttery, Rowie or Morning Roll? Weel, the name does vary. Duncan Jones wid ken a’ about that, as he wiz originally cried Zowie Bowie. Parents can be so cruel, as I wiz saying only yesterday tae oor post-mistress, Pocahontas McGinty.

Weel, throughly stappit wi’ rowies, I got oot a’ my auld vinyl LPs of Jones’ faither and gied them an overdue spin. Sadly, David Bowie’s work is nae weel kent in Meiklewartle. The closest we iver got tae glam rock here was Skittery Willie’s brief flirtation wi’ lamé biler suits and platform wellies. In fact, faniver I mention the Thin White Duke folk think I’m spikken aboot an underfed mallard.