As anyone who works out or knows anything about bodybuilding understands, there is one immutable law of muscle. To make it grow, you must break it down, destroy its fibres. Stressed to failure, it responds by getting stronger.
If you get it right, if you're genetically blessed and chemically enhanced and fed and watered just so, if you're prepared to let a single goal consume your life, you might end up something like this fella. This is Ronnie Coleman, an eight time winner of the Mr Olympia title, winning in 2003. It was a year when Coleman's mighty rule had come under challenge, and he responded by hiding away at his gym in Arlington, Texas for 12 months before reappearing on stage in Vegas carrying more muscle than perhaps any human being ever has. In 2003, Ronnie Coleman was intergalactically huge. He blew the rest of the world away.
The Australian T20 side put me in mind of Ronnie Coleman the other day. Stressed to failure, they have responded by growing stronger. They've reappeared in the West Indies juiced up, oiled and loaded, formidably freakish at the top of the order in both batting and bowling. They're carrying some serious muscle and they're blowing the world away.
T20 cricket is slowly being ramped to extremes. Who knows where it will end. At the outer limits of speed and power, probably. Can anyone stop Australia this time? Oddly, maybe Pakistan, with their left-field, out there wildcards, stand a better chance than those who would fight fire with fire. One thing's for sure: the rest will respond to muscle with more muscle next time. There's no going back from here.