Twitter Australian XI

There is quite a vocal bunch on Twitter and rightly so. They make income from having such opinions on; players, match situations, conditions amongst other things. Unlike your normal ‘keyboard warriors’ though, this group place their money where their mouth is, placing hard earned cash on the line, to go along with those opinions. Which in some way ranks them slightly higher than those who choose to use their fingers to fight people they’ve never met.

Let’s strip back all the huff and puff though, lets see what the Australian side would look like if selected from his bunch of cricket tragics. Who fancies themselves either in their heyday or currently. A pipe dream surely, but what fun it would be to take on the English Twitter XI under cloudy skies with a swinging Duke, or tour the dry, dusty, bunsen burners of India to take on the India Twitter XI. As a start, lets meet some of these ’nuffies’ and see how the team shapes up.

Australian Twitter XI

(1) @lukeamac – Right-hand batsman. Left-arm slow medium bowler. Much like the coaches son, who was shit, but still opened the batting in u12s, @lukeamac’s selection at the top of the order comes due to the fact he compiled the side and chose to pad himself up early. Starting out his career as a better than handy left arm swing bowler with best figures of 6/9, he grew older, fatter and wiser. Realising how much less running there was in batting, he switched clubs when moving from juniors to opens and told the new club captain he was “an opening batsman who bowled a bit”. Highest score 56 and best bowling 6/9. Retiring after winning his first Grand Final in 7 attempts in the 2012-13 season, this selection atop the order is sure to raise eyebrows considering there are others clearly better than him who missed out.

(2) @johnmillward –  Right-hand batsman. Right-arm medium/ right-arm off spin bowler. John “Funky” Miller, like the great man himself, turned to off spin after an accident on the dance floor of a nightclub where he injured his back. The injury also forced @johnmillward to become a better batsman, spending countless hours in the nets and forcing his way to the top of the order. Playing until the age of 19, big money T20 offerings in the UK lured @johnmillward away from our shores. Head hunted as an opening batsman who could bowl in UK conditions, he was soon “smacked over the fence one too many times” and went back to the safety of being a batsman only. Just the one game since 2012 where at @Beaverbet’s bucks weekend he hit a swashbuckling century in a T20, “it was against 9 fielders”, he asked me to leave that fact out though. Highest score 100no, best bowling 6/16. Greatest moment on the field? “I once dropped a test captain off @beaverbet’s bowling “. Everyone wishes they were there to see that cunt seething, double teapot no doubt.

(3) (wk & vc) @Beaverbet – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm leg spin. A T20 “gun for hire” who has played the game at the lowest level both here and in England. With such a diverse range of skills; leg spin that “doesn’t leave the straight”, wicket-keeper “that doesn’t move his feet” and top order “slogging” its hard to picture a professional that best describes @Beaverbet. When asked to stick his neck out he went with “Craig Simmons, a fat slogger who can hit mugs, but hopeless against proper bowlers”, “I hate that cunt though because he cost me thousands that time he fluked a BBL hundred” he added. Most famous for once playing against Brian Murphy (the great Zimbabwean leg spinner who dismissed some guy named Sachin Tendulkar), @Beaverbet recalls someone (who we now know was @johnmillward) “dropping him off my bowling, which cost us the match but also cost me the wicket of a test batsman, for fucks sake”. Highest score of 104 and best bowling of 3/?, should be a better than handy all round cricketer for the Twitter Australian XI.

(4) @LateMailWA – Right-hand batsman. Left-arm slow bowler. Growing up on the fast bouncy pitches of the West, @LateMailWA decided to come off 2 steps and bowl slow, go figure. With a top score of 117no and best figures of 7/48, there are quite a few strings to his bow.  Still thrashing the ball all parts in the ‘Kalgoorlie Friendlies League’ we asked some of his team mates; which top level player @LateMailWA most reminded them of? “Michael Clarke probably, mostly his personality on the field, he just becomes a right arrogant cunt”. “Would have to be Clarkey, bowls shit left armers that don’t turn, had one good day with the ball like Clarke in Sydney that time, now we never hear the end of it”. But don’t let their negativity cloud your judgement, it’s mostly jealously, with an A Grade Premiership in his trophy cabinet and coming in at four, he’ll need to be padded up early considering the dross coming in above him.

(5) @ruptified – Right-hand batman. Right-arm medium fast.  “Wasted youth” was the catch cry from his club team mates when asked about @ruptified’s cricketing prowess. “He reminds me a lot of Andrew Symonds” they continued “had some promise but used to go walk about and hit the piss”. Its the classic club cricket story of the man who looks back and thinks; “what if I didn’t go to the pub everyday”. Clocked in the 130s in his early 20s but now giving up bowling to focus all his time on drinking, @ruptified gave cricket away just 3 years ago and will need a few overs to blow the cobwebs out from the night before. Highest score 108no and best bowling of 5/37, we have a handy first change bowler here who can clearly hold the willow. Comes with sub-continental experience having opened the batting for his club when they toured Sri Lanka.

(6) @Trooa – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm medium bowler.  An understated player who modelled his game on Lance Klusener, taking it a little too far when in the early 2000s he also wore one of those suspect shell, hippy necklaces like Lance in his prime. Apart from that necklace, the other thing Lance was most famous for was running out the Donald in the 1999 World Cup Semi, but anyway, I digress. Much like the great South African @Trooa is a devastating middle order batsman who can swing the new and old ball. He will do a job for the skipper in the field where ever you need him. With highest score of 91 and best bowling of 7/1, this guy will be a key factor considering there is a distinct lack of talent in the rest of the team.

(7) @tradermatt106 – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm medium fast bowler.  There is some questions around this British born players eligibility. However, hes been recruited for now while eligibility rules are looked over. Theres a lot of Freddie Flintoff about him, mostly because you can’t understand a word the cunt is saying, but also with his “ruggedly handsome look and similar bowling style” I think he said. He enjoys seeing the ball come in front of square off the bat usually fielding at cover or mid wicket. While interviewing him about his selection in the side, he was sitting in a Jacuzzi with the none other than, “The Universe Boss” in his billion dollar apartment building, tough life. Highest score 82no and best bowling 2/7 off 9 overs. With a distinguished career on the pitch he still says his greatest achievement is off the field by being “better than at cricket trading”.

(8) @cjpunt – Left-hand batsman. Right-arm medium fast bowler. Finally, a ‘leftie’! “Ben Stokes like I’d say, minus the red hair”. In other words an arrogant cunt, who sledges a lot, with hair colour other than red. Excellent, because for all the huff and puff about professional cricketers on Twitter everyday from this mob, most have gone into their shell when describing their own “illustrious” careers. Without some arrogant prick on the field carrying on, the sledging will leave a lot to be desired which would be highly “Un-Australian”. Still playing suburban 1st grade on turf @cjpunt will have to carry some filth from this side on his back to get some wins on board. Aggressive with both bat and ball, highest score of 117 and best bowling 6/26. A very handy addition, almost too good to be coming in at 8. Anything else we should know about you? “taken two hat tricks” he says arrogantly.

(9) @leantothewind – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm slow medium bowler. A self described “net bowler” who delivers “more John Howard type deliveries than he should”, @leantothewind is Twitter Australia XI’s ‘Big Strong Aussie Enforcer’. A colourful career that bottomed out around the “Jam Gate” scandal; which involved the use of a banned substance that “was in my mum’s jam, you have to believe me” he says. On the field there has been countless junior level “five fa’s” and the “jungle cat type abilities” in the field. @leantothewind is still bitter about being robbed of his chances at the South Australian Junior Trials by an Afghan player with no passport, a massive beard and chest hair. “Absolutely no way he was under 12” he went on to say, still clearly distraught by the event. With a highest score of 42 and best bowling of 5/30, Twitter Australian XI will be looking to @leantothewind for some off field scandals to take the pressure off the on field performances.

(10) (c) @jpp1811 – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm fast bowling. Shits getting serious now, into the blokes who had great promise, but due to their fathers living vicariously through their cricket careers, turned to alcohol instead. Still playing in a strong 1s competition in country Victoria, a lot of Twitter Australia XI’s success will come down to how @jpp1811 and a few other guns perform on the day. I hope it isn’t too heavy carrying the team on your shoulders, don’t let them down. Another member of the esteemed slip cordon, slotting in at 3rd, 4th or gully, his magic is done mostly with the ball. An opening bowler with a strikingly similar action to Mike Proctor, is it any wonder he takes so many wickets, limbs going everywhere, nightmare to face. A genuine lower order slogger with a highest score of 80 and best bowling of  8/37. Countless cricketing awards and achievements, expectations are high and he will skipper the side.

(11) @MaloneCricPicks – Right-hand batsman. Right & left-arm leg spin bowler. Affectionately known as “Wogg” (Warne x Hogg) for his ability to bowl ‘leggies’ with both arms, this freak show has made most teams in his career just so his team mates can see the look on the opposition teams face. A handy addition to the slip cordon at 1st slip, you’ll generally see him tucked partially behind the keeper and apparently because of this he’s “never dropped one at 1st slip”, sharp. A good number 11 slogger with a highest score of 58, he’ll help the tail wag. Best bowling 4/2 and his greatest cricketing achievement? “Captioning the 3rds last game of the year to a win against a bunch of cheating Indians”.

(12th man) @armodan – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm medium bowler. Boonie once drank 52 cans on a flight to tour England, every team needs a Boonie, meet @armodan. Never one to shirk the responsibility on the turps, regardless of whether he has to stand in the field the next day or not. A self described “superb fielder” you can find this bloke lurking around the point region. His cricket career came to a grinding halt in u17s as he went into a year long preparation for being able to buy his own booze. Pissed or not, with best bowling of 5/12 and a “hatty” in u14s, he’ll be trying to take someone in the first XI out on the piss and drink them under the table to get his chance for his first cap.

(Coach) @DownIsTheNewUp_ – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm fast bowler. Ever the tactician, @DownIsTheNewUp_ decided to pull up stumps on his cricket career at age 19 after realising that “spending Saturday afternoons standing in the sun was negative EV”. A genuine swing bowler with heat in his day, @DownIsTheNewUp_ started by describing himself in the mould of the great “Wasim Akram” before conceding Wasim “was left handed and could bat”. “Maybe more Mohammed Asif” he went on, which raised some eyebrows considering @DownIsTheNewUp_’s connection to the sports betting industry since finishing up his cricket career. Anyway, lets sweep that under the rug and move on. Highest scores weren’t important as he was a “bona fide number eleven”, instead, “facing two ex-state cricketers and not dying or being dismissed” were the lofty heights with the bat in hand. Best bowling 7/28 is very sharp though. Without being asked, @DownIsTheNewUp_ told the story of how “once I was on a hat-trick twice in the same over”. The perfect coach for the Aussie Twitter XI, has plenty of old stories, reminiscing about his playing days and never lets the truth get in the way of a good career story.

(Physio/ Doctor) @BozzaLikesLines – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm off spin. Known mostly in cricketing circles for his uncanny Brad Hodge type looks, @BozzaLikesLines played cricket mostly, as his name suggests; for the Mad Monday celebrations. Never really reaching any great heights on the field, @BozzaLikesLines instead decided to do his best work; back at the club house or out with the boys at the local. Because of his great work off the field, @BozzaLikesLines has been voted ‘Best Club Man’ 6 years running for the ‘East Ballarat Hawks C.C’. “He never lets the boys down, its always great quality” said one of his team members when asked. On the field there has been some successes with a highest score of 54 and best bowling of 4/9. When asked about his best cricketing achievement, he said “thats easy, I once had 20 beers at a day/nighter at the G and didn’t get kicked out”.

 

(Squad) @chicken_palma – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm slow medium bowler. Every team needs a good cricket nerd, someone who can methodically work their way through an opposing batsman to bring about his downfall or tell the idiots of his own team how many runs are needed from how many balls. The pressure of a calculated run chase gets @chicken_palma’s broth bubbling. Likening himself to the great Michael Bevan, who also used to waste a lot of dot balls early on his innings, just so he could be a hero later in the game, @chicken_palma is constantly running numbers through his head to see how he too can be the man to hit the winning runs. Highest score of 29, best bowling of 4/4 and fresh off a 2016 C Grade Indoor Title. When asked about his chances of making the team; “for someone with limited ability, I’m awfully optimistic of making the XI”.

(Squad) @snowbet – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm leg spin bowler. A cricket fiend growing up, “I was sick for it, all day, every summer, backyard, poolside, proper cricket in the whites on weekends, loved it”. Described by his coaches growing up as a bit of a “Graeme Hick, built for show, not for go” @snowbet didn’t listen to them, instead he saw himself as more of a “Stuart Law, all the class and ability, just held back by politics, never given a proper go”. As far as highlights on field go, it was hard to go past his backyard heroics where at age 15 he carted his 6 year old sister for “four consecutive sixes over the house”. When asked about the bowling that day he said “she was bowling shit at the back end of a long spell and I gave her the treatment it deserved”. Ruthless. Highest score of 72 and best bowling of 5/8. Despite playing his last game in u16s, @snowbet hasn’t given up completely on the highest honours “I’m still available for selection Smithy, call me”.

(Squad) @lenphil29 – Right-hand batsman. Right-arm medium fast bowler*. With structured cricket limited to u12s and u13s, @lenphil29 has forged a solid career in the backyard arena.  You’ll often find this guy who describes himself as a bit of a “specialist fielder” lurking at deep fine leg or as a genuine back stop depending on the quality of keeping. Those that have seen him go around have likened him to Glenn McGrath in the back end of his career, with the bat that is; ” he can generally stay in but no ability to get the ball off the square” said one of his old u12 team mates. Highest club score 29, best bowling 2/9 and highest backyard score of 630no and bowling 20/4, @lenphil29 will be ready to grab his chance in the first XI with both hands if there are any injuries.

*note: never been gunned by a radar, term “medium fast” given to us by his daughter, she also revealed that was on pitch of just 13 yards.

(Squad) @SgtButane – Right-handed batsman. Right-arm slow medium. Known mostly for his fielding under the lid at short leg, his team mates in the Barwon River region describe him as “an above average fielder with a safe pair of hands”. Hardly a one dimensional cricketer though he bowls some quality right-arm “shit gets wickets” type stuff. “Its amazing how important it is just getting it on the pitch in junior cricket” he says as we discuss his greatest bowling achievements. Interesting wagon wheel from his junior days at the batting crease with 97% of his career runs coming on the leg side. Highest score, unknown “averaged 89 in u14s, only out once and I didn’t even nick it”, best bowling, unknown, “but I certainly wasn’t a strike bowler”. Watch out for this bloke running the water with some serious vigour in the upcoming series. A real club man.

(Squad) @tim_2305 – Left-hand batsman. Right-arm leg spin bowler. Like any Australian who bowled anything that resembles right arm leg spin in the last 10 years, @tim_2305 was once described as the “next Shane Warne”. Sadly though, he wasn’t able to fill the massive shoes of the great man, particularly off the field. The weight of expectation around drug taking, smoking ‘ciggies’ in the change room, fucking countless woman behind his wifes back was too much and instead he settled as more of a “Cam White”, “a junk leggie who slogs and “a boring cunt compared to Warney”. A modest assessment of a career that spanned 15 years and peaked when he belted the bowling to all parts with a highest score of 95. Best bowling of 6/24. Going through some old team photos a baby faced David Warner standing alongside @tim_2305 stood out, when asked about Warner the response was “he was a little cunt then, I doubt much has changed”. Anything else we should know about your career? “I once dropped 5 catches in 8 overs”. Strategic drops no doubt.

(Squad) @BigOtrivia – Right-hand batsman. Left-arm fast bowler. A self described “Gary Sobers type”, @BigOtrivia is a bit of an unknown commodity in this Twitter Australian Squad. Considering Sir Garfield bowled slow left arm orthodox, it must be with the willow that the similarities are striking. But again, Gazza was a left handed bat so no idea what hes talking about. When looking a little deeper into his backyard stats though, you can picture a young, white, West Indian slashing it in swashbuckling style to all parts. Highest score 365* and best bowling 8/25*. @BigOtrivia will need to show his wares in the nets before he can be slipped into the XI above some others.

*note: highest score and best bowling came in the backyard.

 

National Lampoon: New Zealand South Island

National Lampoon: New Zealand South Island

Errrrmm I thought you weren’t writing anymore? I said I wouldn’t be writing about “I won or lost x amount”. I had a great time road tripping around the South Island of New Zealand and decided to put electronic pen to paper. Half for me to remember but also to encourage people to get over to New Zealand. As I have said, the blog will continue, just a different format. I’m trying to think of something cool to do, but as I’m mostly a lazy cunt, I’ll probably just review NRL games.

Twitbuddy of mine coined the phrase “the rorts continue” and don’t they just. Doesn’t matter where you go theres rort after rort going on. We got in a cab out front of Airport at 1.30am, hungry, the only place open was McDonald’s about 500m up the road. After sitting in the drive through for 20 minutes I asked if the cabbie would mind pausing the now $45 meter. He refused and my blood started to boil. After eating half of my ridiculously cold cheeseburger and chips, going another 1.5km up the road to our motel, I forked out $80 for shit food and 2km of travel in a cab, fuck I was seething and THE RORTS CONTINUED.

We got the RV early in the morning and got moving. Stocked up with food and booze and started the 3 hour drive to Lake Tekapo. We had an all kiwi playlist to accompany us around the South Island. No surprises, it mostly consisted of anything involving the ‘Finn Brothers’, but notable mentions also go to Broods, Dave Dobbyn, Evermore and Flight of the Conchords. It’s hard to pinpoint what was more enjoyable, driving to these places or the places themselves. New Zealand is seriously scenic. Had tons of kiwi mates tell me that it’s “God’s country” over there. I mostly thought they were taking the piss as Aussies do with Kiwis and vise versa, but they weren’t.

I was hanging out to hit a hot spring, unfortunately the pools at Lake Tekapo were all man made, chlorinated, hot pools. We went anyway and decided to get a massage and facial at the spa. I can count the amount of massages I’ve had on one hand (excluding the ones in Thailand), facial count is a zero. I had a sore back before we left though and wanted to see if a massage would help it. Fuck it was good, so good in fact that when I was getting the facial, unbeknown to me I was snoring. Bec and the two masseuses were laughing, I don’t remember any of it at all. Ducked back into the hot pool after the massage and while chatting to Bec, we both happened to look down to see mini Mac floating in the hot water through an unknown tear in the front of my board shorts. The whole time, I’d been getting around this complex with no undies on and presumably my todger hanging out at various times. People get put in jail for less, horrific. I got out without cuffs on and our day at Tekapo was finished with wine, cheese and smoked salmon. Eaten overlooking the lake, quality day.

As much as I enjoyed Tekapo, Lake Pukaki was more impressive again. This thing was huge and the water was so still. The reflections from the mountains and clouds in the background were so perfectly symmetrical, if it wasn’t upside down, you would never have known it was a reflection. After camping the night there we packed up the RV and headed up to Glentanner and Mount Cook. Hooker Valley Rd was a 1.5 hour track walk up the valley. 3 suspension bridges and 3 lakes with the 3rd an absolute crown in the jewel. It was incredible,  so quiet and something I’d never seen before. A huge fuck off piece of ice from the glacier sitting in the middle of the lake. Bec and sat, took time to look and listen from the top of the valley we had just scaled. At the water level of the lake the scale of the ice block became much more apparent. I think it was just the fact you don’t see that shit back home, very cool. Out for dinner that night in Twizel to a restaurant called “Poppies”. It must have been the local hang as we met the retiring Mayor of the the local area Claire Barlow. She was out with her council members at her retirement function, full of piss and bad manners (she was actually really lovely, but definitely had a few wines). The meals were fine, nothing to rave or complain about, but the extensive list of NZ craft beers certainly peaked my interest. That night I came to realise that I like dark beers.

Next stop, Queenstown, slightly different experience this time. I’d been here before about 5 years ago snowboarding with some mates, this time around I was with the girl and there wasn’t any snow. The town had such a different vibe without snow, it wasn’t buzzing nearly as much. The iconic “World Bar” wasn’t in it’s prime location on the main road, that place was thriving last time I was here, the town seemed in mourning over it if you ask me. We didn’t waste anytime getting into the fun stuff anyway with Bec booking the Nevis Bungee jump the afternoon we arrived (watch video). She’d been full of bravado for days about it “I’m not scared, I’m going to run and jump off” blah, blah, fucking blah. I did it when I was here last time and although I was a lot more frightened than most (watch video), it still rocks even the most daring of devils. To be fair to her, she was fine the whole way up until she was strapped up and he called her name, at that point she lost all control, her legs started shaking uncontrollably and the tears were flowing. At the crunch time, she jumped with her arms out which is a lot more than you can say for me, I looked like I was shot by a sniper sitting somewhere in the range. The rest of Queenstown was made up of the usual, drinking, Fergburger (you must eat one if you go, is sensational), Queenstown Hill and Gibbston Valley Cheesery/ Winery. Oh, there was one little hidden gem we got put on to by a local. Was about 15 mins outside of town in a place called Arrowtown. The Chop Shop was the name of the place, owned by ‘Chris’ who is the head chef there. Let me tell you, the food was amazing and the service was better than that. We ate the breakfast menu but I reckon they would all be delicious.

Milford Sound was supposed to be the crème de la crème. Everywhere we went, everyone we met “have you been to Milford Sound”, “are you going to Milford Sound”, “Milford sound is amazing”. With all the buzz, expectations were high. Probably the most glowing reference we got was from some scouser at Fergburger. He was by himself and weaselled his way into our convo, God knows how. As he started down the path of being the umpteenth person to tell me about Milford Sound, I expected the standard comment about it’s ‘beauty’. But this football hooligan, beer swilling type character had a different perspective on it. “You get on the boat and and theres a big buffet on board. Now you can load up, I did, I had two full plates and I mean plates”, he said as he finished chewing the last of his Big Al from Fergburger, gesturing with his hands in a dome type shape to show how much food he mounded on his plate. He then proceeded to give me the inside word on the buffet; “I made a big mistake, I paid for it, if I was to go on again, I wouldn’t pay for the buffet, after everyone has eaten, I’d get up and grab some food, save you ten quid it would. That’s what you and the missus should do when you go”. I’m not sure if I looked hard up for cash, but rorting the buffet opportunity wasn’t high on my radar. The next day at Milford Sound, it turned out that we should have listened to the scouser and got on the buffet boat, at least it would have give us something to do. Instead, we sat on our cruise for nearly 2 hours, struggling to see 5 meters in front of ourselves as the rain poured and poured and poured. Who would have known that our friend from Liverpool had the best advice. Moral of the story, is not that you should rort the buffet, just DON’T go to Milford Sound if its pissing rain.

Southern Scenic Route of the South Island. It took us down through Invercargill where we tried to get our hands on some big ‘Bluff Oysters’ but sadly the season was finished. We checked out the ‘Catlins National Park’ and ‘Cathedral Caves’ which were great. The scenery was so alluring that you could have stopped every couple of mins for a photo. We moved up through Dunedin (didn’t stop here sadly, was running out of time) and back up the east coast to our final destination of Christchurch. There was one notable town we stopped in on the last night before coming up to Christchurch, Moeraki. It’s a sleepy, coastal town with a great caravan park on the water (excellent facilities). Fluer’s Place a well renowned dining spot among south island residents and out of ‘towners’ judging by the writing on the walls was suggested to us. Being closed Monday and Tuesday we couldn’t eat the dinner menu as we arrived on a Tuesday for a one night stop over. Instead, we ducked in for breakky. The fit out, cutlery, glassware, writing on the walls from guests and location of this place were very trendy. The food was outstanding which made the experience enjoyable and well worth a look for anyone else travelling through.

There was one non Kiwi song that got a good run. Most wouldn’t know Lindsay Buckingham, but everyone knows The National Lampoons Holiday song. Not a road trip without something fucking up with the vehicle right? Theres never a good time to get a flat tyre, but it could have been worse if we had to fly out later that night. 2 hours after calling road side assistance we were on our way again. We were still 4 hours from where the RV needed to be dropped off which had me a little worried about how I was going to get back in time. In the end, someone stayed back and waited for me to get to Christchurch.

Our final night was spent in Christchurch. We ended up staying in a weird Air BnB type setup owned by this little old Asian lady who looked like she owned a rub and tug. I was pretty tired after driving 1800kms on the trip and when she was telling me the prices of transfers to and from the airport with the line of “I’ll have to suck you dry while you’re here” I couldn’t help but take that the complete wrong way. I knew she didn’t mean it like that, but my brain was so fried I just couldn’t process it any other way. I had picked up a cough on the trip and she was also telling me how to rid myself of it. While explaining her remedy she said “damn I haven’t got anything for you to suck on”, at this point I really didn’t know what was happening so I laughed awkwardly. She acknowledged the interesting choice of words by saying “I shouldn’t talk like that it gets us into trouble”, weird. We went into town for dinner later that night with a friend of mine who now lives in Christchurch. Haven’t seen him for a few years, was good to share some stories, eat and drink. He did put Bec and I onto Hendricks Gin with cucumber, fuck, what a game changer.

Cheers Mac

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

365 days done and dusted

365 days done and dusted

If you offered me $100,000 in my first year, I’d have bitten your arm off to take it. I think I’ve said it before, $40,000 was my goal, I thought if I can protect my $20,000 life roll (that was all the cash I had), make a little bit here and there and learn as much as I can I’ve got a shot. It’s pleasing to reflect on my successes as I write this and just how far I exceeded my goal.

This will be my final post on this blog, certainly in terms of ‘this is the running balance of what I’ve won or lost’ type thing. I have a specific audience and may still write to the audience, but instead it will be more along the lines of ‘NRL game reviews’ or something of the like. Not sure yet, but in it’s current format, this is the end of the blog posts.

Even after such a great year, it still doesn’t take much for the feelings of self doubt and concern to creep back in. The last couple of weeks I’ve managed to wipe off $6 or $7k from my balance. I understand my graph went upwards at 90 degrees from $20k to $100k and that couldn’t continue, but in these moments, stupid brain starts questioning the last year and wondering “how much of it really was just luck”? When nothing you bet goes your way, it’s very hard to imagine where your next win will come from. Making $100k seems so far away, bettering that in the upcoming year, a distant dream.

Experienced a lot this year, but still plenty to learn. I’m going through a totally new experience as I enter my second year on the job. This time last year I was weighed down by the fear of not being good enough to trade sport for a living. This year, the weight comes from the expectation of being able to not only replicate it but better it. $100k in a year won’t look so pretty if I only make $10k in my second year. Combined with other noise in my head about spending money, being away for bulk of the Aussie cricket summer and other personal issues, improvement in year 2 looks like Everest to climb at the moment.

One thing I will be doing this year is better record keeping. My record keeping was more than sufficient for my first year. A year on though, I want to go a lot deeper with it, I really only scratched the surface on records and data. One thing I’m looking forward to is tracking my ROI%. I didn’t know how to record my turnover for my traded markets, but after chatting to a few guys, we settled on (max liability during play / profit or loss = ROI). That will be cool to see turnover and ROI. From that, the ability to split my most profitable markets/ bet types and more importantly find the worst performing markets/ bet types.

Enrolled Uni to study Economics and Finance. Starting in June 2017, always thought I would end up at Uni somewhere along the line, just never had anything that has grabbed me. But numbers, data and the crossroads with sport is certainly an interest. Time will tell how that venture goes, I’m hopeful of getting plenty out of it and be interesting to see where it leads. I have something in mind, I’d love to work with an NRL club one day if I could. For the role I’d like to create, the club would need to be progressive in their thinking, I’m hopeful, maybe even overly optimistic.

I usually sign out with a simple P&L since my last post. For this final post though, I wanted to break down the numbers a little more to see where the money was mostly won and lost.

Rugby League +$65,189.29 (193 markets with turnover)

Cricket +$35,714.54 (416 markets with turnover)

AFL +$11,985.61 (117 markets with turnover)

Olympics +$1,046.85 (1 market with turnover)

Tennis +$1,831.04 (112 markets with turnover)

Running +$658.43 (8 markets with turnover)

Entertainment +$399.50 (1 market with turnover)

Golf +$357.29 (2 markets with turnover)

Ice Hockey +$333.80 (2 markets with turnover)

Swimming +$163.98 (3 markets with turnover)

Baseball +$118.41 (2 markets with turnover)

MMA +$99.60 (1 market with turnover)

Dart +$41.89 (2 markets with turnover)

Rugby Union -$278.07 (5 markets with turnover)

Gridiron -$465.26 (63 markets with turnover)

Politics -$591.14 (3 markets with turnover)

Basketball -$1,308.78 (31 markets with turnover)

Soccer -$2,998.73 (4 markets with turnover)

Horse Racing -$12,724,53 (610 markets with turnover)

+$24,439.80 account balance +$100,473.72 (1 year)

Cheers Mac

Betting profit and loss after 1 year
Betting profit and loss after 1 year
Individual bets since last update
Each individual market bet since my last update a couple of months ago.

Prophet or profit?

Prophet or profit?

I’m still here 10 months on. Been many times where I thought I wouldn’t be and many times where I had to tell myself “I would be”. This far in I understand I still don’t know everything, still don’t have the consistency or stake levels I would like to have, but I’ve well exceeded my wildest expectations so far. Originally I thought if I can make $40,000 in my first year and get paid while learning, great! To make $75,000 in 10 months, crazy stuff.

My penultimate post, possibly anyway. I haven’t posted for ages as the motivation to do so has waned. The reasons I originally started this blog were; to be accountable and to show the path I went down to get to where ever I got to. In my absolute trading infancy blog posts from pro guys were what assured me that I wasn’t about to travel an impossible path. These trading guns weren’t savants, they were just ordinary people that worked hard to build edges in the game. Whether people learned what to do or what not to do, I hoped my journey may help others in the future. As for the accountability, I track my wins and my losses to the cent and I don’t give a fuck if I look stupid anymore. I used to use the fear of looking like an absolute stooge in the public forum as a motivation to “follow the rules”. It worked for the early stages, but as I’ve learnt more, I’ve understood that being wrong and looking like a stooge at times is all a part of it.

Following on from looking like a stooge, “What I learned Losing a Million Dollars” had some great stuff in there that’s really stuck with me. One thing Jim Paul talks about is do you want to be a “prophet or make profit”? Some people get more wrapped up in being right than they do of making money. This has terrible flow on effects including “personalising losses”. It definitely challenged my thinking, made me aware of this thought process and I’m working on completely removing it from my psyche. I’m trading for one reason, profit. I’ll still share some thoughts on my Twitter handle @lukeamac but I’m going to start winding down my blog and focusing on profit.

I’ll do a wrap up of the first 12 months when I get there and then after that, I don’t know if I’ll post again. Never say never, but they certainly won’t be frequent and may not be trading specific. Since my last post though I’ve had a great run, think it’s been about 5 or 6 weeks and my trading is becoming more and more efficient which is pleasing. Took me 10 months, but worked out I didn’t have to plug in my numbers into an online charting tool too, Excel will do it for you. What a noob. Anyway, new looking graph below but it charts the journey in its truest form.

+$26,176.16 account balance +$76,033.92 (10 months, 1 week)

Cheers Mac

Untitled.png

Capture.PNG

Finally, the bubble burst and I lost

Finally, the bubble burst and I lost

After the anger subsided, I felt relieved, finally, the bubble burst and I lost. Not to say I hadn’t lost on random games in the last few months, but week on week, month on month I was just stacking it up. The pressure was building on me, I was getting erratic and I knew it. I bought a bunch of books, of all 10 titles I bought “What I learned losing a million dollars” by Brendan Moynihan jumped out at me. Almost as if I knew I was getting wild and wanted to help protect what I have achieved in this first 9 months of trading.

It’s not as if I wanted to lose, but it was inevitable, the way in which I lost it though was avoidable and that’s where the anger came from. I remember when I used to come home early from a poker session sometimes and Bec would know usually I had done my balls. “Did you play bad or did run bad”? she would ask. Knowing that if I lost playing bad I’d be upset with myself. In fact, when I had played great poker and just got unlucky I was rarely upset (on the back end of a 4 month break even stretch those sessions started to take their toll too but for 99% of the time I was fine). It was the bad play where I used to relive the hand countless times and think about how or what I should have done better. I think its the fact that the mistake is often so elementary and one you’ve made before that pisses you off.

Over confidence and the “invincibility cloak” activated. Really that’s all I can put it down too, the fact that I started to believe I was going to be able to dig myself out of anything. Everything I’ve touched has turned to gold of late and I started getting loose. What started as a small investment with some hedges in place on Mexico against Chile turned into a monster $3,000 loss after I compounded the error by trying to buy my way out of trouble. It wasn’t just the fact I was betting where I have no edge, but I chased, tut tut, naughty boy.

Money lost, nothing lost, confidence lost everything lost. It’s amazing how quickly confidence comes and goes. With those errors came back questions about my lack of judgement in the moment, as well as concerns on discipline and abilities to learn from my mistakes. These were issues I’ve dealt with firstly in poker but trading sport too. I’ve always considered myself a very astute bankroll/ exposure limit manager. I remember seeing people in for $1500, $2000, $3000 in a $2/$3 game of cards and wonder where their limit was. I mean, those games don’t run deep enough that you can ever get that sort of money back in a session, not to mention you ain’t thinking right when you that far down the well. I always limited myself to 2 buy-ins per session with a third available if the game was crazy hot and there were whales throwing good money after bad. In fact I saw it as a big edge I had over my competitors on the felt. They didn’t know how not to lose. By that I mean when they lost, they lost big, when I lost, I lost small. The same principle is helpful in sports too in my opinion.

One quick war story, the one that got away. Missed a big payday the other night, I was fucking spewing. I had a theory that seemed fine but sadly the theory didn’t play out in practice. I’ve attached some screenshots so you can see how things progressed. The short of the long was I had a nice green level book in the Manly v Penrith game a couple of weekends ago. Manly scored probably their 4th try to go out by 20 early in the second half. At Brooky, 20 in front, Penrith playing pretty average, but still, 35 mins to go. Haven’t seen this volume before, but someone comes in and lumps on $25,000 at $1.06 on Manly. Penrith get a scrum inside attacking 30 and I decided to lay $5,000 of the now $12,000 left with some of my green, Mansour over in the corner. When the margin got back to 10 and Manly got 2 repeat sets I decided to hedge at $1.10. Manly seemed to have settled to me and I picked up a few ticks, if they went over in the 4th set, prices would be $1.02. They didn’t score and although I had plans to re-enter, that wasn’t practical as the liquidity isn’t there like it was when the person lumped at $1.06. I hedged for $1,000 profit but Penrith went on to score 27 unanswered points in 35 mins to win the game and I missed out on $3,000 of green. Dirty. Mind you, not as dirty as the backer at $1.06, literally from the moment he backed them, Manly never scored another point.

Period 1: +$10,425.07

Period 2: -$2,371.68

Account balance +$49,857.76 (9 months)

Cheers Mac

Betfair trading and betting profit/loss graph
Betfair trading and betting profit/loss graph
Betfair trading and betting individual plays from 1st of June 2016 to 21st of June 2016.
Betfair trading and betting individual plays from 1st of June 2016 to 21st of June 2016.
25000 backing $1.06 Manly v Penrith 2016 Betfair
What was left of the $25,000 lumpy @ $1.06
Layed $5000 at $1.06 on Manly
How my book looked after laying the $5000 on Manly at $1.06
Level trading book on Betfair. Rugby League NRL Manly v Penrith 2016
How I ended up, as you can see Manly price still $1.18 at this stage. Wish I left it haha

Trading update & the new guy

Trading update & the new guy

I’m running hot at the moment.  It’s been that good that I’m expecting every game or every weekend to be the weekend where it all turns to shit. Weirdly plays on your mind when you’re running so hot. It’s a battle in my head of not getting too cocky, thinking I’m invincible and not missing spots through fear of having losing bets. Weird one, been through it with poker too, the mind is a fucked up thing at times, pessimistic when winning and losing, weird.

Was a nice solid return to work this week, after giving $20,000 to someone in the Adelaide Hills I’ve never met before. Could have been a $5,000+ weekend this weekend but I butchered the fuck out of the game yesterday. I liked the Knights + but the Tariq Sims news spooked me. My ties to the team growing up also mean I need to be doubly sure when I pull the trigger in Knights games. I sat it out and traded it live in play instead. Fucking horror show my book was by the end of the game. I think if Knights won it was -$2,600 and if Eels won -$1100. Fair to say I was very lucky the last try wasn’t scored, saved me $1,500. My timing was just fucked, I flipped my book twice and it was close to the worst time I could have, brutal.

Most people know that I’m not convinced on the whole ‘kids thing’, when I was a lot younger I thought it was a good idea. As time goes by it scares me if I’m honest. I’ve heard both sides of the argument and at this stage I’m 60/40 towards “hell no”. In order to see if I’m any good at looking after another life, we got a dog. He’s pretty cool, makes me laugh, but the little fucker just loves pissing and shitting everywhere, should have called him Nate Myles. At least babies wear nappies, thats one tick in their column.

Period 1: +$3,356.78

Period 2: +$6,106.08

Period 3+$2,849.68

Account balance +$41,804.37 (8 months and 1 week)

Cheers Mac

Profit and loss graph from my Betfair trading and bookmaker wagers.
Profit and loss graph from my Betfair trading and bookmaker wagers.

 

Betfair trades and sports bets since last financial update.
Betfair trades and sports bets since last financial update.
Morkie Maltese x Yorkshire Terrier Ned
Ned on the way home from where we got him out past Gympie. He’s a ‘Morkie’ (Maltese x Yorkshire Terrier).
Morkie Ned grabbing money when I was counting it.
Smart guy, grabbed the cash while I was counting it.

 

“Gambler rolls the dice on Squatter”

Usually about now I update my profit/loss, but this segment really needs its own post. I like to keep things as short as I can. Not sure where to start in order to best do that, I really need to start at the start. Anyway, bare with me, I’ll get through this the quickest I can.

Earlier this month I was watching The Project when a story about a squatter in the Adelaide Hills came on. 126 year old, 2 bedroom cottage, guy squatting in it, this story really intrigued me. It was a number of things that resonated to be honest; old school architecture, someone homeless, Aussie battler, significance in our short history of squatting, my connection with rural land and a modern day Ned Kelly squatter type story.

I wanted to see Iain stay in there, so I donated $50 to the GoFundMe page. I followed closely to see how it panned out for him and when the donations plateaued around $3000 (10% of the required amount), I emailed Iain and asked him to contact me if he fell short of his target. My original plan was find 6 people to chip in $5k each and help him out (the bill was smaller then). I got an email from him on the 10th of this month asking to call. I remember getting it, but I was busy and thought I would remember to call him back, I didn’t. Fast forward to the 24th of May at 2.39pm and I got another email from Iain; “Please call me – the auction is tomorrow – ran short – tried everything can think of”.

With the hammer due to go down at 11am the next day, time was short. Seriously short. After a limited chat to Iain I moved on to some fact checking. Without the boring details everything looked like it stacked up. Iain had been truthful to me about everything really, good signs. In the end it came down to a punt on a guy I’ve never met before, hell, 3 hours ago I had never even spoken to him.

A poker friend of mine Abe Limon (@limonpokeronce told me “I don’t believe in instinct or gut feelings. To me, its just the information you have gathered and processed to come up with a decision that feels right”. I’ve lived by that idea ever since he told it to me. Being able to rationalise my “gut feelings” has helped me immensely in my profession. In this decision my gut was telling me to “go for it”, I can tell you all the reasons but I think in the end there was one point that stuck out to me. I was told by someone close to Iain that would like to remain anonymous that Iain had mentioned; “it was getting a little scary and I think I’m going to have to end it all”. That statement struck a cord with me, although unsure if it was in regards to the squatting, life in general or maybe both, I didn’t like the sound of it. It sounded like a guy who was at the end after doing all that he could. Homeless in the Hills of Adelaide during the winter, that’s pretty rough.

The biggest problem for me was the $40,000 would be most of my cash reserves. On top of that, I had money in accounts all over the place, I’d not have been able to get it out in time. Although not broke, the pressure would have been on. Fortunately, another member of the public had also heard of the story and wanted to help. This person wishes to remain anonymous but without that person this would never have happened.

I slept on it, admittedly though I was favouring doing it. I’m glad I slept though (wasn’t my best nights sleep) but the sleep I got gave me a much clearer mind. I explained to the other contributor that I would be stretching myself to thin in the interim. After some back and forward it was agreed that I would pay $10,000 today with the remaining $10,000 to be paid back to the other financial contributor. Not only did this person put trust in Iain but me too, serious show of faith in destiny, cool stuff. The pressure was off and we were both happy to roll the dice.

The rates were paid and the auction was cancelled. There were apparently close to 200 people that turned up to the auction only to be told “the auction is cancelled”. Now, I know some people’s ideas on ‘squatting’ legitimacy will vary. Thats ok, nothing wrong with differing views but the laws/ loophole is there and there is nothing illegal about what Iain is doing. For fucks sake the guy is keeping a 126 year old, 2 bedroom cottage from falling in on itself and he has a roof over his head. The guy is a little eccentric, but you’d have to be to squat I’d say. From what I know, I think some people are a little angered about it, but I think in time this will settle and they will be pleasantly surprised with how the property looks in very little time at all.

Where to from here, well, long way to go yet. There is nothing formal between the three parties at this stage. We will form some action plans after the media have calmed down. In terms of Iain becoming the rightful owner of the place, he is going to be applying for what is called “adverse possession”. Its a bit of a grey area but in a nutshell if you live in a place for a significant amount of time (different state to state), without consent from the owner of the property, you can claim title. In this case the owner died in the home, the next of kin has not been able to be reached/ they haven’t come forward, therefore, Iain is staying in the home without consent. In South Australia its 15 years, he has been there for over 1 year already, so it could be 14 more years of waiting before we see the application rubber stamped. It could be sooner though too, time will tell.

Some people think I’m crazy, this doesn’t prove that. Truth is I’ve always been crazy, but this is some kind of story and to be honest, I want to be a part of the journey, even if it costs me $20,000. Money comes and goes but experiences and stories are with you for life.

Stay tuned on this one, there is more to come I’m sure! Leave me a comment on what you think about squatting or any other part of this story.

Cheers Mac

Links and references for more background:

https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-34.9743087,138.756443,3a,75y,300.51h,82.48t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sSTRc8QVEACfh6QnPDkPpUQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

https://www.lawyersconveyancing.com.au/encyclopaedia/adverse-possession/

http://tenplay.com.au/channel-ten/the-project/extra/season-7/squatting

http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/adelaide-hills-squatter-in-final-bid-to-try-and-stay-in-his-cottage-before-hammer-falls/news-story/6fd121139ba6fb5e020353c2f8ef177d

http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/squatter-iain-herridge-allowed-to-stay-at-abandoned-property-after-gambler-pays-council-rates/news-story/2db49771200a6535f7be3d48fb82e21a?from=public_rss&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-05-26/adelaide-hills-squatter-iain-herridge-debt-paid-by-investors/7447154