Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Great Australian One Eyed Honk

For those who enjoy cricket, Australian commentator Bill Lawry is either revered or despised.

Lawry was an exceedingly successful captain of his nation's team and has a wealth of cricket knowledge and experience, some of which he occasionally brings to the microphone. An opening batsman able to bat for long periods and once described by an English journo, who must never have seen Boycott, as 'a corpse with pads on', Lawry captained Australia though twenty-five test matches before being dumped in 1970.  Whatever you might think of him as a commentator or cricketer, no man deserves the treatment he suffered.  The ACB didn't bother to tell him he'd been dumped.  The first he knew of it was by way of a radio broadcas and harassment from reporters.

Anyway, one thing is for sure.  If you listen to Lawry's commentary, you need to be a competent linguist.

Here are just a few examples of  Lawryisms, developed over thirty years of commentary. 

Verbal bounce

Beaufill day




There was one priceless moment during the Hobart test against Sri Lanks.  Lawry was extolling the virtues of opening batsman Phil Hughes who was on 87, praising his temperament as an opener, citing his history of first class hundreds and his almost unique ability to make 'big hundreds.'  Before he hd finished uttering that fateful 'big hundred,' Hughes was clean bowled.

Did Lawry even flinch?  No.  Without drawing breath he breezed on to some other unrelated subject.

For what it's worth, my favorite commentators are Ian Chappell and Tubby Taylor.


Anonymous said...

He's been scarred psychologically since his team was whitewashed in South Africa in '69 - '70. I've never heard him say one complimentary remark about the SA team or country. Such behaviour makes him a bad commentator.

pdm said...

Billy Birmingham who did the 12th Man tapes really had Lawry nailed. Loved the seagull and `little bill', skits.

I find the Aussie commentators hard to listen to and Nicholls has quickly assumed the role of an Australian cheer leader. Richie Benaud even though 80 plus is still the pick of them in his limited stints.

Then, there was Danny Morrison in Sri Lanka and he just has to be the worst commentator ever - and I mean ever. What an embarrassment.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

non @ 4:13

You clearly missed the recent SA test series in Australia. Lawry was particularly complimentary vis a vis South Africa and especially Du Plessis.

Barnsley Bill said...

Time marches on. With Tony Grieg seriously ill, Bill Lawrie nearing retirement and Benaud close to the end it is going to be back to volume OFF in my house.
The aussie commentary team have been a delight for most of my life and I am going to miss them when they are gone.

Anonymous said...

William Morris Lawry, born 1937. Six foot two inches tall with a sharp jaw, prominent nose and ready smile, Bill Lawry bore the nickname "The Phantom" because of his youthful addiction to a comic strip character of that name.

A left handed opening batsman with a short back-lift which did not prevent him from driving well and scoring greedily on the on-side. His major quality however was his quite exceptional powers of concentration.

Judge Holden said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Veteran said...

Great post by the Judge on cricket ... not.

He appears quite incapable of commenting on the matter at hand and is displaying a fixation with Adolf that some might say is indicative of paranoia.

Dangerous state of mind.

Judge Holden said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Barnsley Bill said...

Holden, you bore me. For entertainment value I shall check in every day to delete your comments.
Merry Xmas.