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Thread: John Hardinges and The Octopus League

  1. #1
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
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    John Hardinges and The Octopus League

    This is a story about not just a manager of a beach cricket club but the development of a league; from Setup Day to Lifting the Trophy.

    I was a 20 year old from Sussex, I had a part-time summer job but my university had just collapsed, literally, but that's another story. I needed some money; and fast. My job was at the RSPB, it wasn't a great job but it got me money. Everyone knew I liked my sport, especially cricket but I didn't think it would come to much. But then came the Octopus League.

    I was sent to RSPB head base; in Centeral Norfolk, no where near cricket territory.

    "We want you to take over our new Beach Cricket team"
    "What cricket team?"
    "The RSPB are sponsering one"
    "I don't know which team you are talking about" I get handed a 3 page document entitled "The Octopus League"
    I read it through and told the Executive what I saw
    "There's going to be a world-wide beach cricket league with top teams from round the world, starting with 8 teams in 2 groups, Various companys are sponsering teams getting the rights to their nicknames. All top 8 test countrys have been offered a team but only 5 have so far accepted. If they reject the first 2 secondary offers go to England and Australia. I will be the manager of the Hove Seahawks in the Northern Hempishere Division"
    I think about the information for a bit and then sign the contract. The next week I get the information about the teams.

    Octopus League North Division

    Hove Seahawks
    My team. I've never been to Hove before but it has a beach so it looks quite good, In the County of Sussex and the English entry.

    San Fernando Carnival
    In the second city of the Cricket mad nation of Trinidad (and Tobago) the Carnival is sponsered by Trinidad Tourism. I'm really looking forward to going to San Fernando for days under the sun.

    Chennai Spices
    The most popular food in India. The most popular sport in India. Not suprising really that they met. Sponsered by KA.Singh Curries, The fast-food Curry chain.

    Negombo Wires
    In the city known as "Columbo's little brother" the Wires are based. After the debacable of the Champions Trophy in Sri Lanka, Lanka Power have got sponsership to boost the image of the Electricity Company.

    Octopus League South Division

    Hobart Golds
    In Tasmania, Hobart sits, The first Australian entry the Golds are sponsered by Estin Ltd, A film studio based in Hobart.

    Durban Engines
    Durban, on the coast of South Africa has it's team sponsered by South Africa Rail the Railway board in South Africa.

    Dunedin Ewes
    Dunedin on the South Island of New Zealand has it's team, The Ewes sponsered by the biggest sheep farm, or any other farm, in the world, Hammsmith Farm.

    Brisbane Reds
    The capital of Queensland, Brisbane is home to the Reds who are sponsered by Heinz Tomato Sauce. Australia took up the offer of Pakistan's rejected spot.

    With the e-mail I got more details about the league. Each team will play 28 games: 4 against each team in the League: The winners of the 2 Divisions will play a 5 game series in Ras Al Khayma in UAE to decide the winners of the Octopus League!
    The other information I got was that their would be an 11 round draft to decide who goes to which team. It will be a snake format so that the team the drafts first in round 1 drafts last in Round 2 etc.

    It was a lot to take in in just one day so I hit bed before I travelled down to Hove to get my office.
    Or something.

    RIP Fardin Qayyumi (AKA "cricket player"; "Bob"), 1/11/1990 - 15/4/2006

  2. #2
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    The first thing I had to do as Manager of Hove BCC was to watch the deciding of the draft order. Here it is.

    1.San Fernando Carnival
    2.Durban Engines
    3.Chennai Spices
    4.Hobart Golds
    5.Dunedin Ewes
    6.Negombo Wires
    7.Brisbane Reds
    8.Hove Seahawks
    9.Hove Seahawks
    10.Brisbane Reds
    11.Negombo Wires
    12.Dunedin Ewes
    13.Hobart Golds
    14.Chennai Spices
    15.Durban Engines
    16.San Fernando Carnival

    What would a 8-1 draft give us?
    A solid base or medicority?

    The next thing was to fly to Karachi for the tryouts to see who was there that had any talent.

    I knew who I thought was good but what was also nice to look at was what The Cricket Web Times thought in their weekly double page on the Octopus League. This week they had posted a top 5 for all 5 Beach Cricket slots from the trials. The players are rated (Bat-Bowl)

    Opening Batsman
    At the most important Beach Cricket batting slot there are 3 clear studs and 2 good players.

    1.ST Jayasuriya, 35y/old, Sri Lanka
    Allthough old, the 3 planned Octopus League Seasons in a year means he could give 6 seasons to a team.(9-4)

    2.ME Waugh, 39y/old, Australia
    Allthough 39 he still has the eye and fielding prowess to progress in Octopus League.(9-5)

    3.GW Flower, 34y/old, Zimbabwe
    One of the Zimbabwean Rebel's he may be a late round 1 or early Round 2 pick (8-1)

    4.Daren Ganga, 26 y/old Trinidad
    Ganga is a player who never played well in Tests but is a good Cricketer(8-0)

    5.Jamie Cox, 36 y/old, Australia
    One of the best current player not to play Tests Cox will be a good opener for any team (8-3)

    Number 2
    Allways an important position if you can't get a great opener there is an abundance of talent in this position.

    1.Sachin Tendulkar, 31 y/old, India
    One of the top 10 batsman ever, Sachin Tendulkar has signed a one year Octopus League contract(10-4)

    2.Nathan Astle, 33 y/old, New Zealand
    On his day one of the biggest hitters in the world, Astle can change a game in 20 balls(9-2)

    3.Yousuf Youhana, 30y/old, Pakistan
    A good young Pakistani batsman, Youhana is developing into a world-class batsman in his own right but can he cut in the Octopus League?(8-3)

    4.Chris Gayle, 25y/old, Jamaica
    A great batsman, Gayle can cut open attacks as well as bowl so he could be used as an allrounder.(8-6)

    5.Geraint Jones, 28y/old, England
    A good keeper/batsman, Jones shows that you can hit hard and average well in Tests. (8-1)

    I put down the paper because I needed to eat so I went down to the seafront to get some Fish and Chips. There's still time before the draft...isn't there?

  3. #3
    Cricketer Of The Year Kweek's Avatar
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    hmm all good picks..except Jones wouldnt be my keeper pick
    P.S. We beat England at Lord's
    Member of the RTDAS.
    Member of the ESAS - Edgar Schiferli Appreciation Society
    President of the DNAS - Dirk Nannes Appreciation Society
    Member of the CW Colts!

    Quote Originally Posted by Burgey View Post
    I think it's really disappointing of her - would only take a minute or two of her time....
    Quote Originally Posted by luffy View Post
    Wishful thinking on your behalf.

  4. #4
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    Tarick, it's not meant to be the best players in the world, just a good group

    I got back from my meal and picked up the Cricket Web Times

    All-rounder(Number 3)
    The all-rounder plays a twin role so needs bowling skill as well as batting.

    1.Andrew Flintoff, 27y/old, England
    A great power batter and seam bowler, "Freddy" is touted as the new Botham (8-7)
    2.Shaun Pollock, 31y/old, South Africa
    A player that would get into any Test team for his bowling, Shaun's batting mearly makes him greater. (6-9)
    3.Chaminda Vaas, 31y/old, Sri Lanka
    A great bowler who is a rare class pacer from Sri Lanka who has batted effectively as well as bowled for his nation (6-8)
    4.Jacob Oram, 26y/old, New Zealand
    A good allrounder who burst on to the scene but has faded slightly since; could the Octopus be his return?(7-6)
    5.Ajit Agarkar, 27y/old, India
    A fans fav, Agarkar made his first test Century at Lords' and has since played many a time for the Indian ODI team (6-7)

    2nd Bowler(Number 4)
    Preferably a bit of batting talent at this position but bowling much more important.

    1.Shane Warne, 35y/old, Australia
    The man who made legspin cool, Shane Warne is one of the most famous cricketers ever and it's amazing the Octopus League got him(5-10)
    2.Ashley Giles, 31y/old, England
    Ashley has come back with a great 2004 and hopes to become the 3rd best spinner in the world.(6-8)
    3.Abdul Razzaq, 25y/old, Pakistan
    One of the biggest hitting lower-order players in the world, Razzaq's bowling could get him into any team.(7-7)
    4.Andrew Hall, 29y/old, South Africa
    A good bowler who can bat anywhere in the order, Hall is a real utility player.(8-6)
    5.Daniel Vettori, 26y/old, New Zealand
    Vettori is a spinner who's seemingly been in the Kiwi team as the spinner for ages but he's a good player nonetheless. (6-6)

    1st Bowler(Number 5)
    No batting needed it's all about bowling down here.

    1.Stephen Harmison, 26y/old, England
    England's new fast bowling hope, Harmison could turn into a great. (4-9)
    2.Makhaya Ntini, 27y/old, South Africa
    Ntini is a bowler who steams in and trys to get the batsman out because they can't see the ball it's so fast. Will it work in Beach Cricket? (3-8)
    3.Michael Kasprowicz, 32y/old, Australia
    Another good player not to have played many tests for Australia Kasprowicz is a good pace bowling talent.(5-8)
    4.Matthew Hoggard, 28y/old, England
    Harmison's bowling partner, Hoggard could be the one that turns the Ashes(3-8)
    5.Neil Pickup, 19y/old, England
    The creator of Beach Cricket, Pickup can't bat for toffee...mmm...Toffee(0-8)

    So that's the Top 25 : Next up the draft.

    __________________________________________________ ______________

    Guys, I need 7 or 3 of you to do the draft with me to ensure it's fairness.
    Post if you're interested and or If you have my MSN/E-mail contact me.

    Last edited by Jamee999; 30-01-2005 at 01:04 PM.

  5. #5
    International Coach
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    A spinner wouldn't be your first bowler (The Ginger).
    Manchester United FC: 20 Times

    R.I.P. Sledger's Signature, 2004-2008

  6. #6
    State Vice-Captain membersstand's Avatar
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    Nov 2004
    I'll do the draft..

  7. #7
    International Vice-Captain mikeW's Avatar
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    Nov 2004
    on the couch
    i dont get it? what is this?

  8. #8
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
    Leicestershire, UK
    Tom- It doesn't matter on Beach Cricket
    MS- I've added you on MSN.
    Mike- Basicly It's a game called Beach Cricket 2002 which I'm going to run a story on in a League called the Octopus League.

  9. #9
    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Nov 2001
    Vaas a spinner?
    marc71178 - President and founding member of AAAS - we don't only appreciate when he does well, but also when he's not quite so good!

    Anyone want to join the Society?

    Beware the evils of Kit-Kats - they're immoral apparently.

  10. #10
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    I was thinking about spinners from Lanka :S

  11. #11
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
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    "Well here we are on Cricket Web TV for Draft Night! The Octopus League.

    The top 2 players in the draft are Sachin Tendulkar and Shane Warne but who will the San Fernando Carnival select?"

    Well out comes the messenger, he hands it to league commisioner Graham Gooch.

    "With the 1st Pick with the draft the San Fernando Carnival select....

    Andrew "Freddy" Flintoff!!!"

    I watched on my screen in my drafting cubicle as Flintoff walked under the light which had San Fernando Carnival marked on it. Number 1 draft an Englishman. Who'd have thought it?

    I knew that Sachin or Warne would be picked next by the Engines of Durban, I watched and waited. The same routine, messenger from the Durban cubicle came out.

    "With the second pick in the draft the Durban Engines pick...

    Sachin Tendulkar"

    With Sachin gone I picked up the Cricket Web Times I had taken in and looked at how many 9 rated players there were. 5. I had to get one. I looked back at the screen and listened to the Cricket Web TV commentary.
    "It's gotta be Warne now, he's the best bowler in the draft"
    "I think there could be a left-field selection here, Jayasuria or Pollock for example"
    "Well Gooch will announce it now..."

    "The Chennai Spices take....

    Shaun Pollock!!!"
    Allthough a good pick in my opinion, Warne is still undrafted and may as well book a taxi to Hobart now.

    "Nothing to it for Hobart. PICK WARNE"

    Up comes Graham

    "The Hobart Golds select....

    Shane Warne"

  12. #12
    Hall of Fame Member Jamee999's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
    Leicestershire, UK
    Next up are the Dunedin Ewes and they have a wide option avaliable to them.

    "The Ewes select...

    Nathan Astle!!!"
    Dunedin taking a Kiwi to please the local fans.

    The Negombo Wires were up next.
    Harmison, Jayasuria and Waugh were the only 9 rated players left but there were other non 9 rated stars left.

    "The Negombo Wires pick....

    Saneth Jayasuria!"
    Another player taken by his home nation Jayasuria is an opener.

    Next up were the Brisbane Reds who I think will take Mark Waugh but could take good ol' Harmy.
    Anyhow here comes Graham.

    "The Brisbane Reds pick...

    Stephen Harmison"
    I was banking on them taking Waugh so I'll have to rethink me 2 picks in a row coming up.

    I opened the door and gave them the card.

    "The Hove Seahawks pick....

    Mark Waugh!!!"
    Gooch continued.

    "These are the picks of the first round of the Octopus League Draft"
    As he announced them they flashed up on the big screen to form a nice graphic.

    "1.1 Andrew Flintoff- San Fernando Carnival
    1.2 Sachin Tendulkar- Durban Engines
    1.3 Shaun Pollock- Chennai Spices
    1.4 Shane Warne- Hobart Golds
    1.5 Nathan Astle- Dunedien Ewes
    1.6 Saneth Jaysuria- Negombo Wires
    1.7 Steve Harmison- Brisbane Reds
    1.8 Mark Waugh- Hove Seahawks"

    I had a lot of thinking to do.


    For the next 10 rounds the draft will be more condensed.
    Last edited by Jamee999; 20-02-2005 at 10:06 AM.

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