Where is Biff??

Written by Wesley Weber (wpw)

Posted in :Cricket, In the news on 28 Mar 2011 at 10:53
Tagged with : , , ,

The Proteas arrived back home this past weekend without their captain and top order batsman which according to respected cricket writer Archie Henderson ‘was a big fat middle finger to the team’s supporters’

The person who should have been doing the explaining was not there. Graeme Smith had bolted and a member of the glum panel made a poor excuse for his absence. “Personal business in India”, or something like that, was the fob-off.

Smith’s absence was a chicken-out. Hansie Cronje did the same thing after the 1999 Cricket World Cup debacle, sparking jokes about him hiding under his bed. Yesterday no one was sure of Smith’s location.

Poor Corrie van Zyl had to face the assembled inquisitors. He did his best but he wasn’t convincing: he thanked the supporters, blamed the media for calling the chokers chokers (apparently opposing teams have now cottoned onto this), then tried to co-opt the fourth estate as cheerleaders. Try that one with Australians and you’ll be laughed out of court.

It was hard not to feel sorry for Corrie. He had been roped in when the last coach was sacked to do an ambulance job and yesterday he had to do the captain’s job as well.

Smith should have been there, no matter what business he had in India. His snub was a big fat middle finger to the team’s supporters. His absence at a live press conference, enabling him to speak directly to the team’s fans, only made the claims of arrogance and sarcasm at the World Cup all the more credible. These are signs of someone losing his grip.

Friday’s capitulation in Bangladesh was Smith’s last as the ODI captain. If he had not quit the job, he should have been sacked. For all the magnificent victories in England and Australia, his time is up.

If he feels unable to lead, then his selection can no longer be the sine qua non of the past. He will need to go out and prove that he is deserving of a place.

Judged on his batting at the World Cup, he is not. As David Isaacson points out on the Timeslive website, Smith was the worst-performing captain at the tournament of skippers who bat in the top order.

He will now need to go out and get runs at provincial level to convince the selectors.

It might even be best if he withdraws entirely from the one-day team. It will be hard enough for his successor to build a new team without having an ex-captain looking over his shoulder.

We have already lost two national captains this month – Aaron Mokoena of Bafana and Liezel Wium of the netball team. Both have gone kicking and screaming. Biff has bowed out without even a fight. Is there any fight left after Friday?

This article was originally posted on www.thetimes.co.za


  • Biff?? Biff?? Where aaaare youuu??? Now get out of the closet!!

    He’s most prolly chatting up some Bollywood Model/star, trying to get Indian citizenship and avoiding facing SA fans…

  • Comment 1, posted at 28.03.11 11:02:19 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • @Ice (Comment 1) :

    or Minki has a ‘photoshoot’ in India!! 😈 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 2, posted at 28.03.11 11:07:31 by wpw Reply
  • He could be meeting with a bookie to get his payment?

  • Comment 3, posted at 28.03.11 11:16:14 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @wpw (Comment 2) : Minki, go GRRRRRRR!

  • Comment 4, posted at 28.03.11 11:16:19 by Ice Reply
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  • @Ice (Comment 4) : Whackhead!!!

  • Comment 5, posted at 28.03.11 11:17:12 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Check Caprice (he tends to spend more time there than in the nets ) or the Drive-thru Macdonalds in Greenpoint.

  • Comment 6, posted at 28.03.11 11:34:09 by Speed7 Reply

  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 5) : 😆

  • Comment 7, posted at 28.03.11 11:35:52 by Ice Reply
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  • Swak imo…

  • Comment 8, posted at 28.03.11 11:36:44 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • He’s still looking for ‘everything’ they left out in the middle. What a chop!
    He’ll probably be spotted soon, walking the streets of Bangalore, with a new leather jacket, and pockets full of cash.

  • Comment 9, posted at 28.03.11 11:38:39 by Crock Reply

  • I have finally given u with the Proteas 😡

    I hope the trend of chokers continues during the RWC though 😈

  • Comment 10, posted at 28.03.11 11:51:55 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 10) : 4 more years 🙂

  • Comment 11, posted at 28.03.11 12:01:51 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 11) : We’ve got Spam!

  • Comment 12, posted at 28.03.11 12:04:03 by Pokkel Reply
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  • Not Good

    Im convinced South African cricketers were put on earth to taunt me.

    I thought I had put our cricket behind me but it always happens that somehow without consciously allowing it they have crept back into my being. This is not good.

    Out damn sport, out.

  • Comment 13, posted at 28.03.11 12:04:33 by Salmonoid Reply
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    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Salmonoid (Comment 13) :

    Who should be made captain iyho?? 😉

    I reckon its between AB and Amla.

  • Comment 14, posted at 28.03.11 12:13:34 by wpw Reply
  • I think Smith deserves a place in the squad – but can’t wait for Johan Botha’s era as Captain. Gotta say that the selectors have to take their fair share of the blame for the choke…no experience in the middle to lower order to handle games in events like that. Boucher would have been very handy.
    Dont feel sorry for Corrie either.

  • Comment 15, posted at 28.03.11 12:21:48 by Just a Fan Reply

    Just a Fan
  • @Just a Fan (Comment 15) :

    Botha will not be appointed as captain as his place in the starting 11 is not guaranteed.

    Tahir will be first choice spinner and Peterson performed better than Johan at the CWC.

    AB or Amla should get it, i think AB is the favourite!!

  • Comment 16, posted at 28.03.11 12:24:19 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 14) :
    As the conventional guys always stuff up, I would go for Herschele Gibbs, at least then even if we lose we will be entertained. 😉

  • Comment 17, posted at 28.03.11 12:25:44 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 17) :
    On a serious note, it actually is a good question and poses a big problem because other than Botha who is there that is comfortable with the job, having said that I think your take re Tahir and Petersen is spot on. Im sure Tahir will make the squad in all 3 forms of the game. How the hell did Northerns keep that guy on the sidelines for a whole season.

  • Comment 18, posted at 28.03.11 12:30:58 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 18) :

    Just saw this interesing statistic on twitter:

    In the 4 knockout matches he’s played in ICC Champions Trophies and CWC’s, Graeme Smith averages 13.25. 😯

  • Comment 19, posted at 28.03.11 13:03:11 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 19) : Ouch!

  • Comment 20, posted at 28.03.11 13:26:10 by Pokkel Reply
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  • Not sure about giving AB the captaincy as well. May be a lot to ask to be a top order batsman, wicky and captain. If they do select him as captain they need to give the gloves to someone else.

  • Comment 21, posted at 28.03.11 13:38:21 by Viking Reply
  • The way I hear Botha talking, I reckon he expects that he will be the Captain… maybe he’s been electioneering in the background. 😆

  • Comment 22, posted at 28.03.11 14:05:01 by CS Reply

  • @CS (Comment 22) : :mrgreen: 😆

  • Comment 23, posted at 28.03.11 15:57:21 by wpw Reply
  • Smith was outstanding as captain on Friday in the field. Not sure what he had to do for the batsmen. Batsmen are on their own once they are batting. How on earth can we blame Smith for that? Serious everyone get real. It was the run out of AB that cost us huge. Faf called the run that was not on. He got AB run out. How the heck can we blame Smith for that? Batsmen on the field are then on thier own. Sure they are told what to do, but it is up to them to do what is needed. Smith was no where near them while they were batting.

    Yes disappointed he never turned up to face the press. Not really good to hear that,but he probably knew he had supporters just like you bunch waiting. Damn the Saffa supporters are the most fickle bunch ever. Why you bunch don’t try and play top class sport and try and be our captain of the Boks or Proteas? Probably none of you would be up to it. Easy to crictise now, but try putting yourselves in G.Smiths shoes. Really pathetic to critise the captain that was not even on the field when we collapsed in the batting. Sure he never batted well either, but neither did any of the others. Also a run out is pathetic to say the least. Unforgiveable to get run out. From there we fell apart.

    Saying the above. Smith should have come home and faced the press. But like I said facing the saffa supporters would have been unbearable. We don’t support any of our sportsmen/woman unless they deliver. Why? It can’t always be like that. WE lose some we win some. Sure we have never won the cricket world cup. But remember it is a 50 over event. Anything can happen on the day. LIKE who gets to bat first. That can mean winning or losing.

    Think Amla will be the Captain. Heard it would be J. Botha. Just have to wait and see.

  • Comment 24, posted at 28.03.11 21:32:26 by Puma Reply

  • J botha’s only trick is that when he bowls, it looks like spin, and the batsmen thinks its spin (even botha thinks its spin) and then it doesnt spin! and the batsmen is caught unaware!
    J botha should make way for a batsmen, but i suspect he will be named captain of the side.
    Wasnt he once named by the selectors as biff’s sucessor? or was that for tests only?

  • Comment 25, posted at 28.03.11 22:25:55 by kevmaestro Reply

  • Smith is a wanker!dictated the team for to long.

    He is not good enough anymore

    Goodbey mudda funky!

  • Comment 26, posted at 28.03.11 22:42:34 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • @kevmaestro (Comment 25) : Biff has only stood down, as one day skipper, not test skipper, he is still there as the test skipper!! I am not sure I want either Hash or AB as captain. do not want pressure on two of our star performers.Neither can be blamed for what happened against NZ.

  • Comment 27, posted at 29.03.11 08:19:54 by Whindy Reply
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  • JB has a reasonably good record as captain of the ODI squad, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he steps into Minky’s ex’s shoes. I would like to see a change in coach as well. We need a no-nonsense guy like Ray Jennings, who doesn’t take “kak fom kabouters” like Smith.

  • Comment 28, posted at 29.03.11 09:11:41 by rhineshark Reply
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  • World Cup shows that a nation gets the cricket team it deserves

    Published: 2011/03/29 07:55:44 AM

    OH, TO be in Sri Lanka now that the Proteas aren’t here. “India Lite ” is how someone described this beautiful country the other day.

    That would make Bangladesh “India Heavy”.

    You could choke on Dhaka’s air, which tastes of dust and burnt rubber, or the traffic, which fills every last square inch of roadway, or the pavements, which swarm with way too many people for comfort, or the torrent of well-meaning and sincere but cloying goodwill that Bangladeshis seem bent on ramming down visitors’ throats.

    Of course, Graeme Smith’s team found something else to choke on in Dhaka.

    That’s right, New bloody Zealand. Who do these Kiwi upstarts think they are? World Cup semifinalists, that’s who.

    And while they are likely to reap the wrath of the whirlwind that is the Sri Lankan team in Colombo today, they will always be remembered for handing down the painful lesson that this South African World Cup squad was — in the end — as mentally inept as all the others.

    Personally, I believed as I believe the sky is blue that SA had turned the corner when they rose from losing to England in Chennai to beat India in Nagpur. On that day, March 12, the Proteas were the world’s champion team, and I don’t care who says different.

    But if they could play such epic cricket against opponents of India’s peerless class, how could they sink so low against the mediocrities from Middle Earth? Actually, how dare they? Who do they think they are?

    So it makes me a little ill to see how the Proteas are being mindlessly mollycoddled in SA. What the hell is wrong with people who post quasiliterate tweets like, “true supporters nomatter wat! Wish every1 could be as supportive of them!”?

    Why isn’t this person angry? Why didn’t they at least think about stoning the team bus? What flaw in their character could make them want to go to OR Tambo Airport to welcome the squad home as if they had won a war, much less a cricket tournament?

    I really don’t care that the players are “disappointed” or that they understand that they have “let us down”. Why aren’t they telling us why this keeps happening and how they are going to fix it?

    Instead, they sit there like precious brats and say we shouldn’t use the C-word because it doesn’t make them feel very good. (Excuse me while I restrain myself from stoning that sentence.)

    At least Gerald Majola doesn’t seem ready to go gently into that good night of denial.

    Talking about the Springboks, he said: “They know exactly how to win the World Cup, and we don’t.”

    Rugby in SA is a different world in which administrators, players and coaches seem prepared to die for their allies and ready to kill their enemies.

    The game is well-served by journalists who understand that the most vital part of their role is to keep a cynically jaded eye on those administrators, players and coaches.

    Cricket has a far cosier relationship with its media.

    So those reporters who aren’t fans with laptops have to put up with senior figures in the Proteas set-up demanding to know why they are “breaking trust” by reporting the answers to questions they don’t like, or why they aren’t “supporting the team”.

    Because that’s not my job. Cricket SA does not pay my salary. It pays yours. Best you learn how to do your job before you tell me how to do mine.

    Actually, we’ve all failed cricket: from the overprotected players to the wet nurses who protect them, to the marshmallow media, to the slavishly supportive fans.

    Perhaps a nation gets the cricket team it deserves.

  • Comment 29, posted at 29.03.11 09:54:13 by wpw Reply
  • So Smith is being blamed for the fact that his batsmen didnt get runs in the one game that counted?
    Yes his batting hasnt been great over this tournament but all batsmen have bad patches.

    His work in the field and tactical nous during this comp was inspiring. Where have you heard of South African teams opening with spinners and doing such unconventional things?
    Yes, he failed with the bat. But so did all the others.
    End of the day – we were one batsman short.

  • Comment 30, posted at 29.03.11 10:38:58 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 29) : AGREE!!!

    Let’s stop being happy losers/ chokers.

  • Comment 31, posted at 29.03.11 10:45:55 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • that is bad know where to be found eish you must take the talk like a man and if a hiding you need for you and the team then stand up and take it like a man :mrgreen:

    not good at all

  • Comment 32, posted at 29.03.11 14:13:01 by chaz Reply

  • @wpw, a good loser is alwyas a loser!

  • Comment 33, posted at 30.03.11 06:19:08 by Crock Reply

  • just heard that Biff is in Ireland. To avoid paying tax on his money when coming back to SA.

  • Comment 34, posted at 30.03.11 07:47:16 by SharksRTB Reply

  • i can think of a other C word to describe Smith.

  • Comment 35, posted at 30.03.11 10:18:03 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger
  • What’s the difference between Biff’s bat and Elton John’s chin? 😉

  • Comment 36, posted at 30.03.11 11:24:45 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • @JustPlainSHARK (Comment 36) :
    Elton John’s chin hits more balls! 😛

  • Comment 37, posted at 30.03.11 11:25:27 by JustPlainSHARK Reply

  • @Honey Badger (Comment 35) :


  • Comment 38, posted at 30.03.11 15:49:54 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • Just my opinion…..you can not like everybody.

    But the rumors of him getting players out of the team through the years etc..
    Going on like a child when he gets a regulation catch.

    But like I say just my humble opinion.

  • Comment 39, posted at 30.03.11 20:26:27 by Honey Badger Reply

    Honey Badger

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