C R U S A D E R
--------------- PAU L IRW IN ________________
(former "Sunday Express' Sports Editor)
Talking Sport -—
C r u s a d e r C u iie N o . 2 4
a s %
"I asked him what she'd got that I hadn't — and he told me !’
W hat is going to happen to big
cricket after the war ? It seems
that this question has been dis
cussed away back at home by the
lairds of Lord's and, as was only
to be expected from them, they
believe that the game will stum
ble back into the somnolent jog
trot of the old days.
In other words, customers, it is
their idea that the county cham
pionship, with its inequalities and
absurdities, will go on as it has
done since time out of mind.
Now I am a notorious wrong
guesser, but I hazard the opinion
that the man who pays the money
at the turnstiles will not have
county cricket at any price.
W earisome three-day games,
dragging through the sun-scorch-
ed hours, won’t suit him.
A C TIO N W A N T E D
T he tempo of big-time sport
has been quickening. Action is
wanted to-day, not the sight of
a batsman patiently patting his
w ay to a long line of fcenturies.
I should have thought that the
game’s chiefs had learned some
thing from war time cricket.
Tw enty thousand have gone
along to Lord’s to see a one-day
match. W h y ? Because they know
that, the English weather permit
ting, they will see the beginning
and end of the game. In short,
they will get a result ; and, in
the bargain, they will see bats
man hungry for runs — runs in
a hurry — and bowlers really at
tacking, not just turning their
arms to keep down the Score.
T h e trouble with cricket in the
past has been that it has had a
rush of dignity to the head. It
wants to let its hair down a bit.
As I see it, the county cluos
must think seriously after the war
of reframing the championship.
Suggestions have already been
made that matches should be lim
ited to a couple of days at the
most, with seven hours play each
W ell, that’s a step in the right
direction. Personally, I hold the
view that a National League, sim
ilar to the worthwhile compet
itions | in Lancashire and York
shire, is the best bet. Let s have
one-day matches — the razor-
keen battle for points ; the old
rivalries which can pull the cus
tomers into Soccer grounds on the
bleakest January day.
Having said this, I can hear the
bleats from the lilywhite disciples
of county cricket. They will
argue — have argued — that it
is the spirit of the game that
counts, not the mere game itself.
You know their line of talk :
poppycock about cool figures in
flannels casting long shadows as
the sun sets over the old elms.
Muddled thinkers, they are for
ever confusing professional cric
ket with the village green. Believe
me, I am all for village games,
with the glorious finale in the
“local,” but no one yet ever paid
out good akkers to see such af
No, sir, your modern sports
follower wants action. If he does
not get it from cricket after the
war then, as Old Moore Irwin
now forecasts, he will go to the
dogs or the speedway.
And now say I didn’t tell you.
A N S W E R S D E P T .
Pte R. Hogg : Kid Tanner is a
feather-weight. As a boxer in that
division he fought a draw with
Tommy Shaw, the Devon boy.
L/Cpl. R. W hite j Neither Ar
senal nor Sunderland has ever
played in Division II.
Pte R .W . Kerry : Chelsea were
relegate to Division II in 1923-4
and were promoted in 1929-30.
T A K E A N O TH ER LO O K
D E P T .
“The outlook for the Russians
is very poor. Their present situ
ation is serious. Their food sup
plies are inadequate and their
transport very limited. The Ger
mans, on the other hand, have
the advantage of special winter
clothing, of valuable experience
and of employing tactics which
continually endanger the Soviet
transport. The coming Spring
will show how little is left of the
military power of the Soviet.”
(Gen Hasse,:in the “ Boersen Zei-
H E EA R N E D IT !
Gallantry in learning the Ger
man language is one of the ‘wo
reasons given by the Nazi army
authorities for awarding the Or-
d. • c-f the Eagle with Swords to
< *n Italian in I.’bya The
other reason is ‘hat he disopeyed
Italian Army orders not to sup-
p!y Itaiian petrol to German "eh-
captured document which
es the award to Lieut. Pe
ter Ghigo speaks with deep emo
tion of the above services to
“Italo-German cooperation. “He
was one of the few Italian offi
cers to learn German.” says the
As an illicit supplier of petrol
to the Germans he was so popu
lar that German drivers affection
ately nicknamed him the “ Petrol-
¦ ...... ...........................
D E S T R O Y 7th C O LU M N
Now that the Axis forces have
been driven from Tripoli the help
of Eighth Arm y is needed for an
other big job — the battle of the
Fourth Front. This campaign is
aimed at destroying the Seventh
Column, the people who are hold
ing up victory by wasting stores
and equipment. Shipping space is
vital for the knock-out offensive
planned by the Allies : help to
stop waste and release those
,',ips N O W The women in the
' 'ories at home are proud of
h Army : join in the Fourth
t to shorten their woek-
¦ • • . Go fo it I