Wednesday 10 December 2008

Picture byline

Private Eye has a piece in the new issue about the cull of sportswriters and name columnists at the Daily Telegraph. They're comparing and contrasting with the arrival there of one MP Vaughan. He is, according to the Tele's puff: 'a real asset to our cricket coverage. His experience of captaining  the England cricket team and being one of the best batsmen in the world puts him in a remarkably strong position to comment on cricket'.

Oh does it now. And what do we think the man on a central contract trying to get his place back in the side is going to tell us, exactly? What position is he in?

Hiring Vaughan is anti-comment. It's not Vaughan's fault. He's going to have to do something after cricket, and so following former England captains David Gower, Ian Botham, Bob Willis, Mike Atherton and Nasser Hussain into the Sky commentary box must appeal, as must joining Atherton, Gower, Mike Selvey, Derek Pringle, Vic Marks and Angus Fraser in a cricket correspondent's position on a national newspaper. 

Ultimately this has happened because conventional wisdom has it that these people know something that the rest of us don't. That may be true. But unless they can mediate their experience, unless they can translate it, it remains in its trough of comfortable cliche. Cliche, along with psychobabble, is the language in which sportsmen address each other. Waffle on, Vaughany. 

NB: Vaughan has provided one piece so far: a Q&A about golf.

Related post: I blogged before about the great Arlott and Sky here.

1 comment:

Damith S. said...

With out a knack for writing such as lets say you or I have, MV will be pretty useless.

The zombie dribble that we are subjected to by cricketers is enough to drive a deaf man mad.

The Andre Nel column is something Id love to read.