Some will be donning their whites this weekend for a tilt at the flag but for most club cricketers, season 2017/18 is a distant memory.
To the few that were actually pleased with their season, we salute you – contentment in cricket is saved for a rare few Dalai Lama-like figures. To the rest, we say enjoy the next six months of Saturdays without hangover-induced anxiety and a pensioner triggering you for what was surely going down leg (it wasn’t).
They say absence makes the heart grow fonder but for local cricketers, this is only true for some. These are the seven types of cricketers in the off-season.
1. The Dreamer
He puts his season of exile in the 3s down to ‘differences with the captain’ and tells himself without scandalous club politics he’d be in the 1s, 2s at worst. He’ll note down the date of every every pre-season session, because the coach says attendance counts towards round 1 selection (it doesn’t). Winter is for dreaming of a fresh start and a better season that almost certainly won’t eventuate.
2. The Spender
This middle-aged man has no hobbies in the gloomier winter months, but too much disposable income to not splash some cash. He knows gully will be yelling ‘all the kit and you’re still shit’ early next season, but it doesn’t deter him. A slave to capitalism (or Kookaburra), he knows new stash won’t improve his game but the smell of fresh linseed oil on English willow is too much to resist. A new $700 stick thanks.
3. The Houdini
Gone and never to be heard of until late-September at the earliest, when he musters the ability to reply with ‘yeah okay’ to the fifth text from the president asking his intentions to play or not next season. No chance he’s coming to presentation night or any indoor nets. You’re convinced he hates the game but he’s always there come Round 1 next season.
4. The Footy Player
Did you know Damo plays footy? Or wasn’t it apparent when he turned up to every post-Christmas session in his footy singlet telling you about how much more on-field success he has at his footy club? All the pipes in the world, however, can’t help him deal with a gentle away swinger and that will keep you happy over the winter months because, like all cricketers, his failure shines less of a light on yours.
5. The Schemer
He knows there’s a vacancy for the 4XI captaincy next season and he also knows there’ll be two new members on the committee. Putting two and two together, he’ll make sure these two officials won’t buy any of their own drinks at presentation night in the hope he gets the nod to lead a team of juniors and fat blokes to glory next year.
6. The Netter
This guy just loves hitting balls. He loves the whirl of the bowling machine, and the dimples of the jug balls are matched only by the dimples on his big bloody rosy cheeks as he smiles at the thought of a session in May. He’s a moth drawn to the LED lights of the indoor nets, but really he should probably just spend more time with his young family when all is said and done…
7. The Guy
This bloke won’t show up for any winter nets and stroke a glorious 80 off 70 in Round 1 next season because he’s just a bastard.