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Choke on a Zinger

by Jon Gibson / 12.05.2010

Okay so we lost. Pakistan took us, we’re out of the tournament. But let’s not act too surprised here. We were all expecting the big choke. It came, and now everyone’s going to harp on again about us lacking that killer instinct, that tough mental edge. But it’s not what’s missing upstairs that’s the issue, it’s what’s in abundance downstairs. Here I’m talking about the serious tubbiness in our team.

It’s obvious what the problem is. In a tournament sponsored by KFC, we go down. They never stood a chance – all those complimentary buckets of fried chicken sent up to their hotel rooms every night, mercy me, it’s a miracle we made it as far as we did.

Put it this way, if it was the KFC World Eat All You Can Tournament, it wouldn’t have been a contest. If they were throwing Zingers at us instead of cricket balls: different outcome entirely.

The hard truth is, our lads are porkers. They look like big green sausages, and when you’re making a habit of losing matches, it doesn’t help that your shit wobbles when you run. Ja ja, I know, you don’t need to be super fit to play cricket, look at Shane Warne’s career yadda yadda – I say, we pay to see these guys on our screens, they should at least be toned goddammit.

Weren’t they put on a conditioning program? Looks like the fitness coach copied Oprah Winfrey’s training plan: squat, lunge, eat Oreo, cry. Squat, lunge, eat chicken wing, sob.

How hard is it to lose weight anyway? I can lose weight just by worrying about stuff more, it’s that easy. Kidnap a girlfriend, or tell them their pension fund just collapsed, that’ll get the body fat down.

Half the problem is with those outfits. They’re so tight they might as well just use body paint. Although imagine it was your job to paint the Kallis buttcrack. “Uh sorry Jacques, could you just squat please, I need to get right in there, just behind the balls… There we go..”

If you saw Hansie (I’m talking to all 11 of you), the kit they wore back then was cooler than the one they’re wearing now, somehow. Like the crap stock music used on Supersport magazine shows since forever, there’s been practically no progress on this front. And who’s idea was it to play cricket in pyjamas in the first place? I know it’s a night game half the time, but really.

Of all of the players, Dale Steyn is the only one who looks in proper nick, but then again he looks hungry more than anything else. Wouldn’t be much help endorsing Checker’s boerewors would our Dale, but Charl or Roelof would be a comfy fit.

Rugby doesn’t suffer from the same rampant lardiness, tight row fatties excluded, but then again keeping clear of Bakkies is more than enough incentive for anyone to stay fit. As far as gear goes, thankfully the jerseys have finally joined the 21st century, the Cheetahs’ Oros orange-mauve-teal combo being the obvious exception. Tough colours to design with for sure, but they need to call in help. From outside of Bloem probably.

And our soccer players? They look like skinny teenagers. Maybe it’s all the worrying they do, with people expecting them to somehow win games. They should swop trainers with the cricket team, that’ll give them some chunk.

Back to the cricket though. Jokes aside, this choking thing is becoming so ridiculous it’s almost getting boring. We need to lose the tub, and maybe a bootcamp is in order. Get some of those Biggest Loser trainers in, but not the hot lady ones, just the dudes. Make our boys wonder when their next meal is coming, give them that look that dogs get when you forget to feed them, that look of intense hunger mixed with fear, servility and desperation. It’s more mongrel that we need, some of that brak spirit. The Ozzies have it in buckets thanks to their convict DNA, but if we can harness the same intense hunger we clearly have for Twinkies and Tempos, and turn it into hunger for victory, then no-one can stop us.

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