Celebrating 10 Years of Cricket Web’s ForumCricket Web Team |
At the end of the day any site such as CricketWeb is what it is because of the sum total of the personalities of its members, and the purpose of this feature is to introduce some of the major characters in the history of the forums with a plea, for those of them we no longer see, that if you are vain enough to google your username from time to time, then come back – your forum wants you, even if it doesn’t need you.
There is little mention here of the likes of Deja Moo, Slow Love, Buddhmaster and Pedro Delgado who are legendary figures. They are not profiled because the bulk of their time here predates that of either myself or my co-author, but if they want to check in and email us at the usual address we can put in hand the preparation of a second edition incorporating their best or, depending upon your perspective, worst moments here.
What we can tell you is that Deja Moo was a member of the controversial Testing Forum gang and that his name means you’ve heard this…erm…cowpat…before. Slow Love was the forum’s voice of reason, and the forum is definitely a wise head shorter for his absence. Buddhmaster was one of the original forum bad boys, with a Merv Hughes avatar, who brought us the “Bel Air” trick. Pedro Delgado is a Derby County fan, a fiercely patriotic Englishman who managed to win over the youthful Australian element of the forum, no mean feat. He was last seen posting just before the 2006-07 Ashes, so perhaps he got tipped off on what was coming. We would love these four and many more to return.
One further preliminary matter that needs to be mentioned concerns that most hard working of groups at CW, the all seeing and all powerful moderation team. Let’s face it moderating on a forum like ours can be a thankless task and, unlike staff members, the mods are unable to just dip in and out of their duties whenever they choose. The truth is that without their sterling efforts and steadying influence there would be no forum as we know it, so our sincere thanks go out to each and every one of the gentlemen and lady concerned for their hard work.
Having got that out of the way let us have a look at the members list. Corrin you can come in now, as long as you behave yourself this time, and please leave that can of Tennents Super by the door.
The 25,000 plus men
Richard is like marmite. You either hate him, or don’t understand why you don’t hate him. He holds the world record for most posts on an Internet forum, currently standing at 1,456,382. He is best known for his interesting and cutting edge views on cricket which he is waiting for the rest of the world to catch up with. In twenty years time, people will wonder how cricket fans ever rated Matthew Hayden above Nasser Hussain, or why bowlers even bothered trying to take wickets in one-day internationals. Most importantly of all though, we all await the day when a batsman comes out and instead of his “Batting Average”, his First Chance Average is displayed. What’s that you say? Check this bad boy out. Yes, Richard is a true visionary, like a cricketing version of Newton. We salute him.
A little known fact about Marc 43652 is that he holds the world record for the lowest posts to words ratio. You would expect a man with over 50,000 posts to have contributed over a million words to the forum over the years, but in a recent study it was revealed he had only actually entered 206 words across these posts. A firm believer in “why use a paragraph when a cutting no will do”, Marc makes his point and leaves it at that. He has been around CW since the very early days (barring a small two year absence that we’ll brush under the carpet) and is a stalwart of many of the tipping competitions we love so dearly. Most importantly of all though, he heads up the elite Ajit Agarkar Appreciation Society – a dream job for many of us but one he does with great style.
Ah, Jono. Jono, Jono, Jono. It is genuinely accepted that he is the worst poster in the history of all the Internet. Hell, if the Internet had been around 500 years earlier, he’d still win this award. Don’t believe me?
But let’s be fair. Jono is a leader amongst men. He is the unofficial captain of India fans in Cricket Chat, follows some odd sport in Australia that they call footy and likes to rant about how unfair the Premier League’s money factor is – not that this stopped him attending a match between two of the richest clubs in the world when he visited the UK recently.
So anyway, Jono does know a thing or two about cricket, as evidenced by this wonderful post from way back, but he’s also a suspicious character – look at it this way, he spent June, July and August in the UK and oversaw a wretched, rainy summer. The Spring and Autumn though? Glorious.
Ah, good old Mr Myrik. He gets my goat, I can tell you that. The man with the hardest username to memorise in CW history has probably done more than most for the site. He has done the lot; he moderated the forum and kept his finger over the ban button, keeping the rest of us in check. He has written plenty about cricket, providing a Caribbean view but also demonstrating his passion for the game on a wider level. But enough of all that.
No, what Mr Mxythingy will always be best loved for is his tireless work on the sadly now defunct CW XI. This was a simulated competition where forum members would join one of five teams that comprised the CW Development League, Black, Red, Blue, Colts and the almighty Green. The best players in the First Class competition would go on to represent the CW XI against other international teams. CW superstars were known to use their Dev League exploits when attempting to pick up girls in bars, but Mr M was the man who, over the years, spent more time than most simulating games and writing up match reports. Oh, and he’s also an absolute dreamboat.
Whenever I hear a version of the old Kinks classic, “David Watts”, I always think of Brumbers, and how we would all like to be able to post with such eloquence, with never so much as a comma out of place, and displaying such wisdom and knowledge. It’s a good job really that he has never been on the staff, as his presence would cast a long shadow and remind us all of our inadequacies. It’s probably equally beneficial that he has never been a moderator, as if he was the mods would never be bested in any argument, and much entertaining debate would be lost. Yet beyond his apparent perfection there are aspects of Brumbers that give away the fact that he is, after all, a mere mortal like the rest of us. His almost rabid antipathy towards a certain poster gives a hint, but his cover is well and truly blown by his attitude to one of mankind’s favourite creatures.
Craig “Craigos” Craigson travelled the globe from a young age in search of the perfect cricket forum. It was only in the deepest jungles of Borneo, when learning the ways of a group of indigenous tribespeople, that their leader told him that websites usually look the same wherever you are logging on from. Thus Craigos decided to settle for CricketWeb.
One of the great all-rounders Craig has made high quality contributions right across the site. On a personal level he once gave me some excellent relationship advice, clearly well intentioned and gratefully received. Against that background I suppose it was inevitable that putting it into practice would be disastrous, but that’s not the point – as always Craigos did his best to help.
SS is a man of science. Having been a well-respected mod for a lengthy period of time, the Indian yank was recently fired after his brashness in his dismissing of anything that went against his Spock-like rationality (e.g. astrology, creationism, limited overs cricket).
These days, he can usually be found explaining to the great unwashed what they’re really up to under the ground in Switzerland (allegedly something to do with the fundamental particles of Velcro) and why the future light cone of the next Indian fast bowler is exactly the same as the past light cone of the previous one.
My suggestion, if Manan wants to do something really useful for the site, is that he should invent some sort of immobiliser that ensures that those under the influence of alcohol are unable to post. It would do wonders for the forum atmosphere, make the mods jobs considerably easier, and cut infractions at a stroke. My co-author for one would undoubtedly benefit from being such a device.
In March 2006, something happened on Cricket Web. A bloke turned up with a weird username, made some controversial posts and, over the course of the next three and a half years, gradually took over the place, both literally and figuratively. Of great interest to most, though, was what was the meaning of this username? Was pasag some kind of security service agent and that was his codename? Was it an acronym for something sinister? Was it his real name, and just a name nobody had ever heard before. After nine months of anticipation all was revealed and it’s safe to say Cricket Web was never quite the same again.
Picking a best moment for pasag is difficult, largely because he’s a waste of ……… (my apologies to all readers but Corrin is doing this bit and he’s just nipped out – I didn’t catch what he said Zac is a waste of nor the reason for his temporarily evacuating the room, and I am certainly not going to try and guess. Indeed in the case of the latter, judging by the look on his face as he left, I really don’t want nor need to know anyway) but also because he’s done more for the site and forum than almost anyone. He rarely posts these days but remains a CW enigma, and an undisputed all-time great.
The easy joke on the forum these days is to say, “haha, South Africa are #1 in the world” but Langeveldt bucked the trend before it even existed. An Englishman with a passion and adoration for South Africa, and a top-class photographer, Langeveldt is an infrequent visitor to the forum these days but has left his mark there even if he was to never post again.
Langeveldt is probably best associated with his many rants, about all facets of life, usually the unimportant things. The smoking ban. Kids being allowed in pubs. Cyclists. Other drivers. Pedestrians. People who don?t listen in lectures. People who ask questions in lectures. Kevin Pietersen. Subforums. All of these and more have felt Langers’ wrath over the years; like a group of Germans who didn’t thank him for holding a door open once.
dontcloseyoureyes is without any shadow of a doubt the loveable rogue of Cricket Web. Controversy followed him onto the forum from day one, literally: he found his username changed by the powers that be because it was deemed offensive. Since then, he made his mark by ensuring people were aware of his opinion, be it on Australian cricket, his beloved Manchester City, or just life in general.
Like everybody, he’s had his days of posting round the clock. They are behind him, but it was enough to sweep him to a memorable victory in the 2009 edition of Battle of the Members. Despite the impressive knowledge he has demonstrated on a variety of topics over the years, dontcloseyoureyes, like many posters, is probably best loved for his top-class rants, usually aimed at his fellow posters. That’s why we love him, though.
In 2011, Prince EWS had a fantastic idea; the Cricket Web Forumer World Cup. The idea was simple. You sign up with a name – your name or a made up one – enter your batting and bowling style and preferences, and score your abilities in various areas. You also select a team. With the information provided, Prince EWS could then run a tournament, alongside the real World Cup, simming matches using this information. This event was really popular, it was promoted here with many forum regulars getting involved.
We eagerly await the start of the Cricket Web Forumer World Cup.
But don’t hold it against Prince EWS – he’s part of the furniture. If you’re posting with a multiple account, you have to get out of bed early to get past him, as the technical guru of the moderation team. He’ll get into a discussion with you on any cricketing matter, and also made one of the best posts in the history of the forum – an absolute classic.
There was once a poster called broncoman who posted a lot about Rugby League and ran World Club Cricket, a long-running cricket management game which maintained a popular niche on the forums. The same broncoman also had stints helping out with Development League (Mr Myrik was out modelling) and posting expletive-laden rants during the FIFA World Cup. For legal reasons (ahem) he had to change his name to Simon. Some people are afraid of change. Others just hate it. He’ll always be broncoman to me.
The “Old” Favourites
The father of the forum JB is not quite as old as Methusalah, but he was present at the ‘Gabba to witness Australia being humbled in the first Test of the 1936/37 Ashes series. Fortunately for him he was nobbut a babe in arms so has no recollection of the match in general, or his country’s 58 all out in their second innings in particular. Thus JB’s earliest Ashes memory is the crushing defeat meted out to Walter Hammond’s team in the equivalent fixture ten years later – rather him than me! I love reading JB’s posts about those he has seen, and played against – it is a great shame we don’t hear from him more often with this sort of thread.
Don’t be fooled by the current avatar. Our old friend SJS has never to my knowledge been sought by any law enforcement agency nor is he guilty of any misdemeanours more serious than possession of a serious passion for and knowledge of the game of cricket. Couple that with a talent for turning a phrase and, periodically, plenty of time on his hands, and you have a man who more than any other has educated CW on the history of the game whether just as a poster, or on one of his occasional stints on the staff. Lest I create the wrong impression however I hasten to add that SJS is also a man of great humour, as his famous stats factory amply demonstrates.
Our man from the East Midlands wasn’t quite in at the start, but is certainly in the “gnarled old veteran” category. By far his greatest gift to CW was a long-running blog, Devil Ducky, which ran for years in the mid-noughties, and which is preserved for posterity here. Sadly eddie has been a rare visitor in recent years but was spotted roosting in CC as recently as September 2011. He was on his own then, he and Ducky having split when the latter was appointed Australian Captain, but he promised me he would return and perhaps, Ducky’s days in his current occupation surely numbered, he will be reunited with his anatidaeic friend when he does so.
The Folk Heroes
One facet of the site that wasn’t present at launch, but which I feel obliged to stress is by far the most prestigious part of the site, is the Book Review section. Canberra resident Archie Mac is the man to thank for this and he also has the distinction of being the only staff member ever to be able to get away without having to use anything resembling his real name when engaged on official CW business. It is to be hoped that Mr Mac’s powerful leadership, and the inspiration he gives to his small but dedicated team, will continue notwithstanding his recent joyous news that Mrs Mac is “in t’ family way”. I was slightly concerned at this news myself, as I believe the youngest of Archie’s other four children is a teenager, so I am most grateful to forum member benchmark00 for making available for Archie a place on one of his regular “Family Planning for the cricket tragic” residential courses that normally retails at AUSD20,000. Knowing benchy’s generally unconventional attitudes I must confess to being a little concerned for Archie’s welfare, but am assured that no previous attendee of these courses has gone on to procreate again, so I am content it is a wise precaution.
Rarely seen on the forums, Dave Wilson gets in here because of his contributions, mainly creative ones via his features but also, in his role as Head of Features, in the back office. It is Dave who produces those lively and original pieces of statistical research that appear on the front page on a regular basis. Uniquely amongst the features team Dave is a published author. Not only has he had some of the work we have seen on CW published in a mainstream cricket magazine, but he has also written and published a critically acclaimed book about the origin of band names. As a native of the north east of England resident in Silicon Valley for many years, you may feel that all that adds up to a man as eccentric as legendary forum member Igor Clubshub. Well I do, and for the avoidance of doubt I want to make it quite clear that that view is a measured and considered one and has nothing to do with my burning resentment at the fact that nobody has ever offered to publish my work in printed form.
In 2010, Cricket Web forum member The Sean ran an excellent series where members voted for who they believed were the 25 greatest cricketers of all time. These votes were turned into points on a sliding scale, and The Sean then posted a new thread each day, at first counting down from 50-41, 40-31 and so on, before doing one thread a day for the top ten.
Each day, these threads were opened with great anticipation. I remember very well sitting in my office, not doing any work, and opening up the thread for number eight. What followed was so hilarious that no amount of explanation can do justice to it, so here is the thread for number 8.
If you don’t understand why this is sitting in the GI Joe section, then you haven’t clicked the link. But that’s not the only good thing Joe has brought to the forums. A rare treat on a forum of any kind in that he can bring intelligent and thoughtful argument to the table and yet mix them up with slapstick humour of the highest order. Who will ever forget his artistic depiction of the aforementioned Craig?
Amidst all the jibes old man Burgey gets about his monumental age, it is often forgotten that fredfertang, the man who has written the bulk of what you are in the midst of reading (but alas not this paragraph) is, staggeringly, even older. Now I’m no poet but I heard once that experience makes you wise. And Mr Fertang is living proof of that. If there is something ‘tangy (@benchmark00) doesn’t know about cricket, then the chances are it didn’t happen, which is excellent news actually as he denies all knowledge of any Ashes series occurring between 2005 and 2009.
And if you want to know one singular reason why fertang is a legend amongst peasants, it can be found in the admiration that the pom-hating benchy expresses for him, even going so far as to organise a gorrilagram for his birthday.
It’s worth saying this popularity is not quite universal though. His own son signed up for Cricket Web, with the username fatt, and had this to say during the fredfertang v Ausage battle in 2010’s Battle of the Members.
To truly appreciate our fred, you have to read the finer discussions in Cricket Chat, and the Cricket Web frontpage, which he is a mammoth contributor to. So to pick a highlight is nigh on impossible. As such, I leave you with just a tiny taster of the challenging views he presents on WG Grace. As I said, if he doesn’t know it, it didn’t happen. And that’s not an opinion, it’s a fact.
I think he’s hot / I know he’s sexy / He’s got the looks / That drive the girls wild / He’s got the moves / That really move em / He sends chills / Up and down my spine / He’s just a sexy boy, sexy booooy / He’s not your boy toy, boy tooooooy
Yeah, that’s right. CW’s hottest member is Nnanden. But he brings us much more than just his wonderful looks…no, seriously he does. One of the keenest followers of Australian Domestic Cricket on the forum and he tells us that he always gets his predictions right.
Every community has its petulant teenager and Cricket Web is no different. Young Marcuss, who has just started secondary school, joined Cricket Web in 2009 after learning about the game of cricket on a school trip to Taunton (which he had to travel to partially on ferry due to living in the part of England that Victoria still reigns over). He is renowned for his ability to wind up elderly Australians over their poor weather analysis and brings a whole new meaning to the saying “dog with a bone”. In fact, he keeps hold of the bone so long you don’t know where the dog ends and the bone starts. But which bit is Marcuss? I have no clue at this point.
Thankfully, I mean sadly, quiet in recent times, nightprowler holds the distinct honour of being the only man to moderate Cricket Web and [SITE NAME REMOVED. THERE IS NO OTHER CRICKET SITE. ANYWHERE. MOVE ALONG].
Nightprowler has a great sense of humour, nice guy, blabla yadda yadda. His true best work is for a serious cause though. A man of Islamic faith, nightprowler has set about using his time on CW to fight stereotyping and prejudice such as this and this.
No, there is not a typo. vic_orthdox, the top dog of CW moderators, is both our most orthographically challenged member, and also the only one we know of to have his own cricinfo profile page. As a moderator he has long since had the good cop-bad cop thing going on, but the most memorable analogy was one which he awarded himself when he stated he was Batman to forum clown/pest (delete as appropriate) sledger’s Joker.
It takes a special kind to moderate a forum for as long as vic has – I don’t have specific dates but it is definitely in excess of five years – and yet to still be best remembered for your posts rather than the bans, infractions and thread closures. vic, though, has achieved just that, with members constantly noting that there is nobody’s cricket posts they’d rather read; to come across vic analysing a batsman getting out or a bowler underperforming is to know that you are in the presence of someone who truly understands, and has great passion for, the wonderful game that brought us all here.
With that being said, it is only just and fair that I present you with an example of such technical prowess.
Not to be confused with the far superior neilpicksupstuf, Neil has been a mainstay of CW since the very early days. His main contribution has been to goad us with his oversized avatar, as if looking at his mug wasn’t enough. Well on top of the odd bit of moderating and writing anyway.
Neil claims to be a teacher in real life but his real work is as a rogue apostrophe hunter – it’s exactly as it sounds. He also claims to coach junior sporting sides but was spotted by our spies actually trying out for these sides. And failing, obviously.
The other half (together with the aforementioned Pickup) of the CW branch of the Exeter City Supporters Club grecian is included here for the simple reason that both my co-author and I number him amongst our favourite posters. Unashamedly parochial in his sporting passions grecian can be irascible, although that may be explained by a distressing experience he suffered a few years ago while refuelling his car at a local service station. Too late grecian realised, hours later, that the young man who had served him as he completed his purchase was none other than CW celebrity Richard, and understandably the missed opportunity has tormented him ever since.
Like my co-author grecian is one of those posters who might benefit from the sort of immobilser I have tasked Manan with producing, although I would miss those occasional bursts of invective he posts when intoxicated, of which this and this is are classic examples.
If there is one thing we can all agree on, it is that those pesky Europeans and their meddlesome ways aren’t involved in our beautiful game.
Cue Samuel Vimes. From Norway. You know, that cold place where they like silly sports like Figure Skating and Curling. I mean Curling, what on earth is that?
So nobody really knows whether our Samuel has ever seen a game of cricket or if it’s all some sort of inside joke but he has wowed us over the years with his immense knowledge of, well, everything. In fact, the Norwayese one (am I saying it right?) is such a top geezer that he won 2008’s Battle of the Members. As they say on the forum, Wife and Girlfriend! Wait, what?
I must confess to having had trouble knowing where to start with my fellow lawyer. Burgey is the best loved and most proficient ranter on the site, and that is a hard earned title given the plethora of competition. I am sure the irony will not be lost that the original “ranters” were a heretical English sect in the 17th century, though Burgey is an Ocker through and through, and anybody whose mind wanders down the “he doth protesteth too much” route, and starts to suggest that there is any remaining affinity to the mother country, is liable to have Cam’s enforcer, ripper868, let loose on them.
It is exceptionally difficult to isolate one rant amongst so many, and my co-author did warn me that seeking out classic Burge is rather like looking for a piece of hay in a haystack. His words proved prescient but I finally decided that this gentle rebuke to the Australian selectors is my favourite.
Of course Burgey is by no means perfect, and the way that he has refused to honour his commitment to walk naked through Martin Place in the event of Australia losing the 2010/11 Ashes series has dented his integrity. His smartarse lawyer’s trick of then claiming the benefit of a typographical error, and that he was actually promising some sort of homo-erotic scenario at the residence of my co-author has caused further consternation, and the asking of the question “Is Burgey on the turn?”
CW staffie and predictions blog guru Uppercut found Cricket Web because he was looking for somewhere to rant about how England were overrated. He has spent the following three years bemoaning how underrated they are by his peers, betraying his anti-Anglo roots (he’s Eoin Morgan’s cousin).
When he’s not posting on Cricket Web, he pretends to be a student while pushing old women in front of cars, and chasing burglars with a machete. He also likes a bit of a flutter, and to use satire to great effect, especially against other posters and pundits.
There are four things that are essential to any long-running forum’s existence. These are a bit of mild innuendo, quick wit and sarcasm, brutal honesty and a good flounce. It is for that reason that we are indebted to Voltman who has been a regular contributor to the forums over the years in all of these ways.
In his spare time, Voltman is a superhero, using electricity from his fingertips to stop villains. Hence the username. He is also one of the funniest people to have graced CW.
Darren Murphy aka benchmark00. The very name conjures up for me an image of a long moonlit beach along which an iconic Tony Curtis lookalike makes good his escape from 500 heavily armed terrorists, having just assassinated their leader and saved the free world. So why does he ruin that picture by having that bloody monkey as his avatar?
Benchy is, frankly, incorrigible. Permanently banned once before for, to put it bluntly, just being himself, he has continued to behave in exactly the same way since his readmission. Sorely missed during his long exile he did at least leave his many supporters with a magnificent parting shot that remains the best post of its kind the site has seen.
Furball may seem something of an enigma but, once you know his agenda, is in fact quite transparent. He was the role model for MacAdder in Blackadder II and it is from Furball that the description of MacAdder as the “most dangerous man ever to wear a skirt in Europe” is derived. Like his regency counterpart Furball fervently believes that Scotland should rule the world and his CW existence is devoted to bringing that about, initially by inciting England and India to war against each other. It seems remarkable in light of the above that Furball was elevated to moderator status so soon after joining CW, but he was quickly rumbled, and on discovering that the Stone of Scone was not in fact hidden under Neil Pickup’s desk in the mods’ office he flounced out, preferring to launch occasional marauding raids into match threads. To see what you are up against with our claymore wielding friend here is Furball the poacher ripping into the man from the Minor County, and Furball the gamekeeper, taking a pot shot at my co-author.
Kev Goughy deserves to have his name in lights for his contributions to CW alone. He spent some time on the staff, in fact I’ve even heard his rich Yorkshire accent talking typical good sense on some sort of round table discussion that I presume must have been trialled on the site long before my time here. His knowledge of the game’s technical skills is second to none, and his views on coaching should, in my opinion anyway, be an integral part of any manual. But for me what stands Goughy head and shoulders above everyone else on CW is that he did actually contribute to one of the great innings of cricket history. Rewind to Headingley 1991 and that epoch defining 154* from Graham Gooch – before embarking on his momentous knock Goochy asked for some net bowlers familiar with the territory. A youthful Goughy was one of those called up. The rest, as they say, is history.
As the man with the largest intellect on CW anyone who takes on Mr Z in a debate is, unless he ends up taking pity on them or their name is Brumby, almost certainly going to end up performing a humiliating climbdown within half a dozen posts.
In real life, unlike like this writer, Mr Z is a proper lawyer and will in due course be the first forum member to take his seat on the High Court bench. He will be in his element there I have no doubt, but perhaps not on his first day, as despite being a bit of an old hack I do number amongst my contacts a couple of cleaners at the Royal Courts of Justice and I will be able to arrange for a few splinters to be strategically located as he takes his seat.
Mr Z does have a few negatives recorded against him, having an image of himself as his avatar being one of them (and NO I don’t mean the current one) but there is no better reading on the forums than one of his eloquent but withering attacks on ignorance. This is a fine example.
In 2009, a man called Steve did a ’round the world on a bicycle’ challenge for charity. He rode across every continent and then the final leg took him from Land’s End to John O’Groats, via Salford. As he approached Salford, a terrible feeling of dehydration came across Steve and he was flat out of water. Forunately, like an oasis in the desert, he came across a working men’s club. Phew, what a relief! he thought, and perched his bicycle on the wall outside and strolled in.
He staggered to the bar, barely able to walk, and the barman greeted him with a smile.
“Can I have a glass of water, please?” Steve gasped.
The barman looked at Steve and studied his evidently fatigued body, and exhausted mannerisms.
“You can pay 1.50 for a bottle,” he said, with what seemed to be a sadistic element of glee.
The cyclist, carrying no cash, left the bar, collapsed and never made it to John O’Groats. The barman was a Cricket Web poster who goes by the name of cpr.
When he’s not refusing water to the masses, cpr can be found providing interesting facts on other posters, supporting Manchester United and voting Conservative. Just imagine how popular he is at the CW Christmas Party! Yet amazingly, he probably fits the bill of ‘cult hero’ better than most – he goes about his posting quietly, but those who love cpr will likely list him as one of their favourite members. No-one can quite work out why, though.
If you clicked the link in the previous profile, then you might not need to read this one at all, as it should tell you everything you need to know about the erstwhile Matteh. He hasn’t posted at Cricket Web since June 2010 but between late 2005 and that time, his presence cast a shadow across the whole forum. He could be relied on to post around the clock, snapping at your heels with witty/snide putdowns, blasting your taste in music and supporting Mansfield Town. His posting on cricket was severely limited from very early into his posting career (in fact it was once said that, “something incredible must be happening if Matteh is posting in Cricket Chat”) which we can probably put down to his confused dual-cheering for both sides of the Ashes rivalry. He also deserves a shout out as the captain of the magnificent CW Green for the final few years of Dev League – in fact the only reason Dev League actually stopped was because Matteh had finally built a Green side that was going to conquer all. FACT.
The best and worst thing about Matteh, depending on which side you’re on, is without doubt his wit and cruel disregard for people’s feelings. In 2007, amidst a slew of flounces and goodbye threads, he posted a little fib just before he set off to Glastonbury, with humorous consequences.
Currently in the sin bin
Abusive, opionated, arrogant and obnoxious are just a few of the adjectives that admirers of the Prenton Park Vigilante use to describe their favourite poster. Do not however be fooled into thing that the man whose posts can be as harsh as anyone’s is unpopular. This year’s battle of the members amply demonstrated, as our Gimpey swept to the title on the back of a wave of support unprecedented in the history of the site, the affection and respect that he commands. Currently taking a well-earned break from his posting duties, in the real world GIMH has found congenial employment as a sniffer dog, bringing all his finely honed ability to spot a Precam multi by sense of smell alone, to the task of eliminating all Bolton Wanderers supporters from the British mainland. His greatest gift to the site is, arguably, this thread.
Endearingly popular amongst the vast majority of CW members sledger is a bit like your seven year old nephew who is always witty and charming but who occasionally ****s on the carpet. Best illustrated by the fact that he is the only member to come back from a permanent ban twice. His most recent slip cost us another six months of his company but he will be back soon. When last I heard he had just graduated in Law from the University of Reading, a very fine start in life. The forum is littered with classic sledger moments but this is one of my favourites.
You don’t have to be a reprobate to earn your place in our sin bin as Staff Member Ganesh demonstrates. Seasoned forum veterans will be well aware of the puerile standards of humour that generally apply on the boards and the long established “Greigy” award is a classic example. The making of predictions is standard forum fayre and a “Greigy” (taking its name from “we’ll make ‘em grovel”) describes a particularly inaccurate attempt. There have been some really cringeworthy forecasts over the years but Features Co-ordinator and Roving Reporter Ganesh has, with his prediction for this summer’s series, supported by his views on the respective merits of India’s and England’s 2011 pace attacks raised the bar and caused me to wonder whether “Raving Reporter” might not be a more appropriate job description for him. Well done Ganesh mate, you’re a credit to the staff!
As an aside just two forum members managed the “Anti-Greigy” this summer by prophesying England’s crushing 4-0 victory over India. Unfortunately however a combination of modesty and journalistic etiquette mean that neither my co-author nor myself can name them, which is particularly annoying as one of us, I mean them, underlined his genius by also nailing the Stuart Broad hat-trick.
Fardin Qayyumi’s forum ID was cricket player, but to everyone here he was simply “Bob”. A young Afghan lad living in California Bob joined CW in 2004 at 14 and was just 16 when, in April 2006, he died as a result of injuries sustained in a road traffic accident. Bob’s time here came and went before I joined so it is not appropriate that I try and tell anyone what he was like, but the answer is set out, many times over, in his tribute and donation threads.
In many ways the sight of those threads was the reason I stayed at CW. At first I assumed the forum was just a collection of disparate individuals who had a common interest, but nothing else to bind them together. For those who know nothing of Bob read the whole of each thread. Note the affection and the, for a group of people who by and large were fairly impecunious themselves, remarkable generosity with which funds were raised to Bob’s memory.
Many of those who contributed to the thread and the fund are rarely seen here these days, if at all, but they were a community. I sincerely hope CW isn’t tested in the same way again but, despite the wholesale personnel changes, I’m pretty sure that the spirit of the place is such that were the situation to arise again, the result would be the same.
And with that change of mood we come to the end of our round up of notable CW personalities. We’d like to have included more profiles, and indeed did write a lot more, but the operation of the filter and/or management censorship reduced them to nothing for Mister Wright, Steds, Scaly Piscine, Athlai and NZ Tailender.
Profiles of Lillian Thomson, Perm, and AndyC did not get past the libel readers. We did better with roseboy64 and Top_Cat but both served us with super injunctions at the last minute. In the light of those judicial pronouncements we decided to comply with requests made by lawyers representing Flem274, Matt79, _Ed_ and the man who used to be Clapo, to withdraw their profiles.
Some chose not to employ lawyers (shame on them!) but nonetheless PhoenixFire, Son of Coco, TT Boy, Spark and Sanz all issued threats of modest violence which, as confirmed cowards, my co-author and I decided to treat seriously. On the other hand, just to show I have a bit of backbone, the dark and malevolent threats uttered by the Scottish poster have been scoffed at and ignored.
A different approach was received from Got_Spin, Tom Halsey, honestbharani and bagapath all of whose bribes to keep quiet about past indiscretions have been very welcome. We are, of course, far too chivalrous to disclose what went on between four_or_six and Somerset at the mods recent summer party, as reported by Fusion to teja, and then passed from Cevno to smalishah84 via Shri, vcs and biased indian – well actually Corrin was hell bent on spilling the beans but as he’s banned and I’m not I won that particular argument, a bit like when the mighty Royals beat the Whites in that play-off semi-final, but I digress.
All those named have played a role in the development of the forum and the site, as indeed has every poster who has posted even once (except Jono, obviously, as he’s a bit of a waste of bandwidth) and we apologise profusely to all those that lack of space and time, coupled with innate idleness, have prevented us mentioning specifically.
So what is there left to deal with? Firstly a major episode from the past needs to be mentioned. It will not have escaped anyone’s notice that CW is a cricket site, there being a cunning clue in the domain name. That said most members, well some, oh alright Corrin we’ll be honest; just a very few of them, are fully rounded human beings, and happy to turn their debating skills beyond the game we all first come here to discuss. As a result the Off Topic forum has often proved as popular as Cricket Chat, and indeed even now some posters seldom stray beyond it.
OT’s heyday was in the mid-noughties when it was largely the province of a group of Australasian posters who, obviously bored with cricket as a result of Australia’s long run of success, turned it into their own sub-site and divided down tribal lines.
On the one hand were the Legion of Doom. Their nominal leader was a kiwi, Lord_of_Darkness, a man who has sadly not been seen on the site for years but whose legacy, the eponymous thread Lord Presents…What Made Your Day + What Ruined Your Day is seldom off the front page of OT to this day.
Leading lights in the Legion of Doom included Mr. Casson and benchmark00 and they found themselves opposed by the Milkshake Society, led by Nibbs, who included, or at least claimed support from, the likes of Voltman, Nnanden and Buddhmaster in what was to become the first, and to date only, OT War.
As the weeks passed OT became completely lawless and began to resemble the sort of barren landscape so beloved of the designers of first person shooter games. Decent posters feared to step inside and early attempts at moderation failed. Eventually however the whole mod team got together and launched a well organised and heavily armed clean-up operation that saw bannings aplenty and a return to calmer OT conditions.
Unfortunately neither my co-author nor myself were present during the hostilities. We had better on-topic things to do in the magical summer of 2005, but thanks are due to vic_orthdox aka Jack the Mac, who proved he can use a spell checker after all by subsequently producing this detailed history of OT, and these profiles of its leading characters.
The significant factor in the OT War that seems to have been overlooked before now is its effect on the Ashes which, while it was raging, finally came home after more than 15 years. As this is new information to us, and yet to be fully analysed, my co-author and I, measured and reasonable blokes that we are, have yet to come to a definitive conclusion but the likelihood has to be faced that in acting in the way that they did to reclaim OT that James and the then mod team were indirectly responsible for the appalling carnage of the following 2006/07 series. If this hypothesis proves correct we trust that they will all hand themselves in to the recently established Fertang Court of Justice without the need for the Corrin squad to seek them out and make arrests.
As an incentive to these potential Defendants to do the right thing I can confirm that the President of the Court, His Honour Mr Justice Zaremba, has decreed that the death penalty has been suspended for those who do voluntarily surrender themselves to his custody. That said they may feel death would be preferable to the other available punishments, those being either to be compelled to read each and every one of Richard’s posts at one sitting, or alternatively, for the more serious offenders, half an hour with benchmark00’s Gorillagram.
Returning to outstanding issues we move on to the second. As in any community not everything at CW is entirely clearcut and, for me, there are three particular mysteries that, over the years, have preyed on my mind for what must be around 20 minutes altogether. The first concerns the true identity of Spanish_Vicente who, as any posts of his you might encounter will confirm, is said to be a duplicate account of sledger. Now I don’t buy that for even one of those twenty minutes. You don’t see such comments on any other banned accounts that I’m familiar with, so who is this man? My money is on a then moderator who cracked under the pressure and, under the influence of his medication and while briefly out of his straitjacket, then tried to frame sledger because of a belief (probably reasonably held to be fair) that sledger’s antics had been the cause of his breakdown.
And then there is our Vice Head, the shadowy Rich Twyman (Rich2001). Has anyone ever seen him and James in the same room at the same time? I am unconvinced. My money is on him being James’ imaginary friend, although I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Mr Nixon and Mr Twyman being CW’s Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
Finally what of the GerainIsMyHero/GingerFurball imbroglio? Now I can remember, not so long ago, when the two of them were constantly at each others throats – if it hadn’t been so entertaining it would have been bad for the forum atmosphere. Then without any apparent explanation, in the time it takes to say “that’s the new Precam multi” the pair of them are suddenly as thick as thieves, in fact CW’s equivalent of the Kray twins. What is it that has caused such a sea change? and which is Reg and which is Ron?
Perhaps the second decade of CW will provide some answers, or maybe it will simply raise more questions, but no doubt you will all make a mental note to check out Part 2 of this feature when it appears in October 2021. I nominate now the talented Howe_Zat to write it, so if you want to influence what might be said about you, then you know who to ingratiate yourself with in the meantime. Jake is at the forefront of a clutch of Yorkshiremen who have recently come on board with he himself, flibbertyjibber and Jacknife (my nomination for finest avatar of all time) all making their presence felt this summer in the English Domestic thread. This bloom of white roses was particularly welcome in a magnificent summer when, as I may have mentioned elsewhere, the 77 years of hurt finally came to an end.
Hey Lanky Lanky ……………………………..
This article has been a collaboration between Martin Chandler and Martyn Corrin. Neither of us are prepared to accept any responsibility for any specific passage, and indeed can no longer recall who did what anyway, however we have both agreed that Jake Howe and Darren Murphy, who have been kind enough to contribute a few ideas along the way, must thereby be jointly to blame for any offence caused, and should bear the burden of any infractions the mod team might feel it necessary to apply. Thank you Jake and benchy.