The madness of a cricket test match. A madness of supporters. The fun. And of course, Faf

Test Cricket.  Yes it is about the score, the runs, the wides, the 4's, the 6's, the LBW's, the batsmen, the bowlers, the umpires, the outs and the ins, the reviews, the state of the pitch and the innings. 

But.  It is also about  the sun, the caps, the suntan lotion, the beers, the boerewors, the Sunfoil placards, the Standard Bank sponge finger and then ...... oh yes and then my darlings ...... 

it is about who sits around you.  

Day 1 of the NZ vs SA Test in Centurion, I part with my ticket as I have something urgent to attend to.  However my Day 2 ticket is all mine.  

We sit on the grandstand in really good seats and then starts the day long cricket.  And spectators. 

Behind us we have one young guy and two girls.  The entire grandstand added together simultaneously, did not speak as loudly or as dramatically as he did.  The arm movements alone could have conducted the Philharmonic. All day.  From 10 am to 4 pm.  They leave before the end.  I silently thank whoever was responsible for that.  We know ALL his business.  Who pisses him off, who he loves, his scant knowledge of cricket, his illnesses over his life ranging from a cold to his appendix and others that I quite frankly would have not wanted to know. The two girls did not get that much chance to speak. Little wonder they always offered to go and buy the beer. 

At noon arrived a family behind us.  Initially only 3 of them.  The guy behind me had a half drunk bottle of flavoured water.  In very thin plastic.  Which he proceeded to squeeze and release, squeeze and release.  Not drinking it.  Squeezing and releasing the bottle.  For 40 mins.  Like jumping on and crumbling plastic.  At the 40 minute mark I had to ask him if he was doing it for a reason.  Because he was 9 cm from my ear.  All he still had to do was click a pen on and off.  

He spent the next 30 mins on the phone.  Trying to tell his friends how to find him and their seats.  They were in the stadium.  All the grandstands are numbered alphabetically.  The rows and seats clearly marked.  Till today I do not know why he did not give that info instead of "no man my broer, look where the smoke is coming up from that guy in the blue shirt's braai, now look 18 m to the right is a girl with a green coolbox, now we are directly opposite that on the other side of the stadium".  Well at least that is what it sounded like to me. 

Then his friends arrived and it got really fun.  The one behind us knew everything.  About everything.  First he gave his very long view about the new planet that was discovered. Then he gave the rundown about why Faf, who was edging towards a century, could try bat better.  Now please understand.  Leave Faf.  No seriously, I will cut you.  
Next up there was a review called for on the field.  "I am telling you ous ... it is out, everyone can see it is out".  It was in.  So now we have "I was just about to say to you ous that it is actually in".  Go figure. 
Now looking at FB he notices a special for Levis at R1000.  "This is daylight robbery" wisdom spews forth "my cousin knows a ou who can sell you 3 pairs of Levis for under R1000".  The boys and I wonder if the label will say Levys.  Some blessing comes about and they decide that the two ladies should go home and make salad and them three ous will go buy meat and beers at Spar.  They leave to go home to braai. 

Down near the front are 5 young guys ... late 20's.  Their guns are impressive, oiled and on display (their upper arm muscles in case you are battling to keep up).  The only thing more impressive is Steyn's bowling speed.  And that look he gives the batsman.  It could wither a planet.  They have a systematic pattern for 6 hours..... buy beer, return, drink, buy beer, return, drink.  It is the return which causes the amusement.  Because it steadily declines between 11am and 5pm. One guy is the beer fetcher.  At 11am he does his returns by carrying all 5 beers and leaping down the steps to their seats, two at a time.  By 2pm he is taking the steps sedately, one at a time.  By 330pm he is going down one step at a time, but taking two of his own steps on each one.  By 430pm he has forgotten there are steps and by 5pm he does not even know why there were steps in the first place.  And where the hell is he? 

Next up to cross the row was a young woman.  She was wearing something.  Words fail me. It seemed to be a dress.  But it was a blouse.  Worn as a dress. Short.  Very short.  And on top it appears that she had lost a huge piece of the material.  Because not much of her very vast cleavage was covered.  As she passed the people in her row they were cut off from the sun for a long time.  They possibly even missed a wicket.  They did not seem to mind much. 

Our back row was then replaced at 4pm by 3 guys who had spent the entire day in the beer garden, probably hanging over the edge of the pool, shirtless, loud and obnoxious.  They were blood red.  They had had more than an adequate amount to drink.  Granted they were quite funny.  But they had about another 3 "just for the road" in the hour behind us.  Must have been a helluva long road.  Clearly they had played cricket.  90 years ago.  Naturally they would do it waaaaay differently to the very talented SA team.  They told us about their local pub in Boksburg that they were stopping at on the way home.  I prayed for all the other drivers and passengers on the road.  

And then of course there was mummy and her two grown up daughters who sat two rows in front of us.  She took a photo as the women (her girls) walked into the grandstand.  She then took at least a dozen pics of them watching cricket.  "Mummy is talking to you" was her mantra.  She then discovered that there were beers, donuts, boerie rolls and chips.  She had a lot.  Of each.  As the day progressed her hair became more wild.  Her photo taking became more frantic.  She then grabbed a Sunfoil poster and wrote on it *KEVIN we missing you at the cricket* and held it up.  She waved it almost as much as the guy lower down who had written THE EFF SAVED YOU on his.  It did prompt a man further back to shout "Ag sharrup en sit man .... almal weet die DA is die rede dat hulle iets het om te save".  Local is lekker. 

We left at 545pm.  It was an awesome day of cricket.  Brilliant weather.  Fantastic team. 

And spectators for the fun of it. They make it really part of the outing. 

Local is indeed lekker ne'. 




Till soon 
c'est la vie xxx




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