Thursday, March 6, 2008

What's in a (Nick)Name?

The current nickname problem in the Australian cricket side as some of the old school starts to call it quits is one that can quickly get away from you. In five years time we could be looking at a team full of "Robbo's", "Mitch's" and "Clarkie's", and suddenly we've got a crisis on our hands. I don't think it's any coincidence that the brightest period of Australian cricket (and as seriously dominant display in a genuinely international sport as ever there was) coincided with the highest level of nickname originality and imagination ever (Tugga, Junior, The Sheik of Tweak and one of my favourites Savlon just to name a few).

I'm happy with Buck (Mike Rogers) and The Trap (Phil Jacques), they're definitely working for me and are showing some positive signs for the future. Mitch is just not cutting it, although Notch might be a suitable interim nickname while we debate the pros and cons of Bonk vs Jenny vs Stumpy. This brings us to Stuart Clark and the genius that is the "Wendy Jr" nickname, which feets him like a glove, or indeed like Warnie's protection of choice as he takes yet another supermodel's temperature with his all-beef thermometer.

You can't deny the proportional relationship between awesome nicknames and awesome sporting performances (just think Master Blaster, the Human Highlight Reel, Voss the Boss or King Wally, even The Don). Strength coaches, conditioning coaches, fielding coaches and sports psychologists are all well and good, but where the real success and longevity lies is in nickname coaches. It's time our cricket team got a jump start in this department, keeping us a step ahead of the opposition – and I know just the two bloggers to do it!

That’s how I’m seeing it,
Al “Doctor Colossus” McCabe.

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