The ICC have been keen to stress that measures have been taken to avoid the 2011 edition of the World Cup suffering from the same nonsense that made the 2007 abomination what it was. Of course, the main problem with that tournament was its length, made evident by the face that I must have visited the hairdresser some three times between Shaggy performing ‘The Game of Love & Unity’ at the opening ceremony and the debacle involving umpires and lights in the final, something which they claim won’t be a problem this time round.
Given that ODIs still suffer from those boring middle overs sections as well as the inevitable flattening of the associate nations, will this make following the competition any less painful? If you were forced to listen to Joe Pasquale read Tolstoy’s War & Peace to you, but were reassured that he was reading it quicker than he normally would, would you be any less likely to try and snatch the book from him and try to beat him unconscious, even if it was in paperback format?
Boasting about the length of the tournament isn’t going to work when one can generate a list like this, consisting of things that might take as much time and be just about as bearable:
- Previously mentioned Joe Pasquale reading of War & Peace.
- Listening to Genesis’ discography (Turning the volume up when Phil Collins takes over lead vocals).
- Watching all six Star Wars films with George Lucas providing commentary throughout.
- A road trip across America with Richard Hammond in a pedal car.
- Having an argument with Douglas Murray. (Topical!)
Suddenly the all new shorter World Cup doesn’t seem as appealing.