Righto then. Let’s hear it from all you Michael Clarke haters out there.

He doesn't deserve the grilling he gets from some people. Pic: Getty Images

Go on, give it your best shot. Let’s hear it from you cricket geniuses who said a bloke who exfoliates could never be relied upon to make runs in a tight scrape.

Let’s hear it from you big, tough know-it-alls who said a namby-pamby bloke called “Pup” wasn’t fit to carry the kit bags of blokes with rugged nicknames like Punter, Tugga and Tubby, let alone carry their proud captaincy legacy.

Come on. Speak up. Tell us that Michael Clarke’s 259 not out this week was yet another aberration, a hiccup in a universe where boofy men thrive while vain, sensitive men are doomed to vapid, meaningless lives in hair salons and journalism.

Sorry, can’t hear you. Wonder why not? At a wild guess, maybe it’s because Clarke played yet another textbook captain’s knock this week, digging Australia out of a hole so deep they found Brant Webb and Todd Russell at the bottom of it.

Again this week, as he did the whole of last summer against India when he made a triple and double century, Clarke played with both style and with grit. Those same two characteristics which you haters keep telling us are oil and water.

The weird thing about the Michael Clarke haters is that so many of you are young. The crusty old brigade schooled on the Chappells are incurable. They’ll never warm to him. But Clarke also has countless critics among Gen Y.

A generation which believes it’s perfectly normal to drink cider instead of beer at the pub thinks its national cricket captain isn’t manly enough. Get a PhD in pure maths and you still couldn’t figure that one out.

Look, there’s no point pretending that Clarke doesn’t occasionally challenge even his greatest admirers with moments of narcissism. His recent Louis Vuitton episode was a bit of a cringe.

I would have preferred it in Houndstooth, but you can't have it all

And there was that wedding horse.

Clarke will always have his neigh-sayers

But the bloke now averages 50 with the bat and has turned a Test team in flux into a competitive outfit. That’s all that matters.

Clarke recognised his image problems back in early 2010 when he broke up with Lara Bingle. When the fallout from the nude shower shots became untenable, he hopped a plane from NZ to Australia, dumped Bingle, flew back, made a ton, end of argument.

He then sold the Bondi pad, downgraded to a sensible vehicle and the rest is still rapidly unfolding history.

Clarke was modest in accepting his Man of the Match award last night, giving much credit to his team-mates. Truth is, they should give him credit. Guys like Ed Cowan are now growing under Clarke’s wing, just as so many players found confidence under Steve Waugh.

Michael Clarke is not just the best batsman in the world these days, he has become a mentor. Thanks to him, his team lives to fight for the number one world Test ranking in the second Test in Adelaide.

Also, he is not Ricky Ponting. Stick that in your Louis Vuitton pipe and smoke it.

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    • TChong says:

      05:01am | 14/11/12

      Agree Ant
      Clarkey , will one day be recognised as Pontings equal with the bat and as the captain.

    • Gregg says:

      08:08am | 14/11/12

      Ponting is another that inherited a great side Chongy, making captaincy easy but as the team results were found wanting so did his captaincy, he not in my book the greatest of captains and how many ashes series have been lost!
      They also need to be grooming some younger batsmen for both Ponting and Hussey, the days for both of them numbered besides the latter getting a century in Brisbane.

    • Metro says:

      08:39am | 14/11/12

      There is no doubt he is in great form with the bat but it still doesn’t change one thing he is a gigantic twat !!!!

    • gobsmack says:

      08:53am | 14/11/12

      I don’t like him at all.

      I will say that he is a much better captain than Ponting.

      Mind you, unlike Ponting, Clarke isn’t burdened with a No. 5 batsman who consistently threw his wicket away at the worst times with lazy wafts outside off-stump.

    • REALLY says:

      09:05am | 14/11/12

      He should have had his contract torn up when he dumped Lara Bingle what an idiot

    • Tony T. Teacher says:

      09:41am | 14/11/12

      “Ponting’s equal as the captain” sounds almost like a compliment.

    • wolf says:

      10:04am | 14/11/12

      Still think it’s a bit rich to call Clarke the best batsman in the world at the moment.  That mantle belongs to Kallis (regardless of what the ICC rankings say). Over the last 2-3 years he has been the most consistent, scoring heavily in all conditions, whereas most of Clarke’s runs have been scored on pitches which are as flat as a highway.

    • Tubesteak says:

      10:07am | 14/11/12

      I don’t think so.

      He’s had a good year with the bat. I’ll admit that. But that’s just one good year. One good year does not a great player make. I’ll wait to see if he can continue the form this summer and over the next 5 years before he redeems himself.

      Dumping Bingle was the smartest thing he did. He should have concentrated on his cricket rather than hopping off with some other princess. This still shows that he has a lot to learn.

      I’m sure we’ll still see the impetuous risky shots over this summer….again…..

    • Fiona says:

      11:58am | 14/11/12

      Really Really? I seem to notice he has got his life together since he got rid of Oz’s No 1 Bimbo .... at least he didn’t hook up with Brynn ...

    • James Anderson says:

      03:22pm | 14/11/12

      well said Metro - can bat, can bowl, can captain, is a tosser!

    • BoroHall says:

      05:36am | 14/11/12

      Clarke haters?
      I’m over here by the cactus!

      Sorry, No one is singled out as a future captain when he is still a teenager and has proven nothing.
      Cricket is run by boring old members of inherited privilege.

    • Realised_Potential says:

      08:14am | 14/11/12

      Well Boro, you know where you can shove that cactus.

    • BoroHall says:

      11:00am | 14/11/12

      I do, but your mum is out of town tonight!

    • craig2 says:

      05:44am | 14/11/12

      As long as he keeps making runs, who cares if his passion outside of cricket is shopping? Bloody ponting better shape up or he’ll find plenty of time for his golf soon enough.

    • Anthony Sharwood

      Anthony Sharwood says:

      06:30am | 14/11/12

      Nathan Bollinger, if a week is a long time in journalism, politics, sport etc, then two years is an eternity and anything I said two years ago has a complete amnesty on it.

      That, or I’m just a shameless flip-flopper!

      By the way, are are you an amalgam of Nathan Bracken and Dougie Bollinger?

    • Mahhrat says:

      06:33am | 14/11/12

      Yup.  Six runs, straight back over the bowler’s bald head.

      Help yourself to some extra internet, Nathan, great work.

      I’ll admit I seriously doubted Pup’s commitment to the game, right until he dumped Bingle and got his shit together.  Since then, he’s been every bit the modern Australian Captain.

      This week’s innings was pure class.  Dat cover drive - oh my.

    • HappyG says:

      07:45am | 14/11/12

      Ant my man you just got owned.

      Clarke got on the right track the minute he dumped his bogan girlfriend. Just check their individual career trajectories since then.

    • RobJ says:

      07:53am | 14/11/12

      ““If surveys are to be believed, the vast majority of Australians believe that new Australian captain Michael Clarke is an incurable wanker. On the evidence of the last couple of years, it’s hard to argue.””

      Even if true does it matter? To me what matters is; does the team respect him? Does he perform? Does he win games? It really doesn’t matter whether or not fans, critics et al don’t like him. He’s doing a great job!

    • Woodsy says:

      08:44am | 14/11/12

      To be fair to Ant, he did wind that article up by saying “I think we should all give our first Gen Y Test captain the benefit of the doubt. My guess is that he’s nothing like the wanker he’s so often made out to be. Though having said all that, it certainly wouldn’t hurt if he made a few runs for a change too”.

      He’s made the runs, benefit of the doubt has been given. You’re welcome mate.

    • TheRealDave says:

      08:56am | 14/11/12

      Ant - you may wanto to find out where you can get some of that SPF 50 sun cream - cause thats gotta burn .

      Ouch!

      wink

    • Sir Viv says:

      09:02am | 14/11/12

      *Fist bumps Nathan Bollinger*

      Sharwood OWNED.

    • KD says:

      12:10pm | 14/11/12

      Haha!  Excellent research Bolly!  BTW, I’m neither young nor old, but don’t think much of Clarke either.  Maybe if he’d just shut up and not do interviews that might help - he’s no intellectual giant that’s for sure!

    • JoniM says:

      03:17pm | 14/11/12

      Fair Dinkum Ant !
      The guy is still a nerdy try hard !
      He at least got his highly talented batting ability into full focus once he got rid of that leech, the Bondi pad and trappings !
      From the time he took over the captaincy his batting form has been outstanding. His personality to achieve is dictated by the hero books he has read ! His captaincy is still very ordinary, but as captain he will succeed with the bat, because its in the hero’s script ! His century in Cape Town in 2011 was the second best Test century , I have seen by an Aussie under enormous pressure. Only the ton by Kim Hughes in the Boxing Day Test at the MCG in 1981 on a brute of wicket facing the might of the West Indies attack, beats that Clarke effort for me !

    • Ben says:

      05:09pm | 14/11/12

      Nathan Bollinger, you should go work for Cut and Paste in the Oz. Outstanding.

    • Fed Up says:

      05:57am | 14/11/12

      The whole team is full of metrosexual pieces of fluff just like the wallabies…bring back the real men…Lillee,Thomo and co

    • Gregg says:

      07:45am | 14/11/12

      I’m sure Warner, Siddle, Pattinson and co. would love to meet you and then Wade might be hoping to get a wallop in too.

    • Fed Up says:

      08:00am | 14/11/12

      But no hitting me below the belt with their hand bags

    • Fred says:

      08:23am | 14/11/12

      I agree with your wallabies statement, but not the cricket team. I dare say if you were to face up to siddle, hilf, pattinson et al in the nets you would involuntarily expel the contents of your bowels. A 5 ounce sphere of leather looks rather slow on the tele when it clocks 140kph. Its a different story when its coming straight for your head.

    • Fed Up says:

      08:44am | 14/11/12

      Try 97 mph at your chin…baseball…these guys bowl like girls and not that accurate

    • Borderer says:

      09:08am | 14/11/12

      The Wallabies should be made up of a pack of barely controlled psychopaths led by a few elegant players in the halves, all ready to smash anything not in a gold jersey. Instead we have a pack of useless d-bags who spend their free time trashing rugby on twitter and trying to book their next tv commercial…. After their performance against france I would have asked all the players for their mum’s details as we’ll be getting them to play in the next test.

      As for the cricket team, presently we have an experienced batting side but the bowlers are less so and they win you the game. Clarke is right, they will take a boost from their performance on the last day, not bowling no-balls is a good start.

    • Ben C says:

      09:22am | 14/11/12

      @ Fed Up

      When a pitcher can pitch accurately at 97 mph with a fully extended arm - point of release at the top of the arc - then I’ll pay attention.

    • Tim says:

      09:57am | 14/11/12

      BenC,
      you forgot to mention the massive run up.

      When a bowler can do it off one step, then I’ll pay attention.

    • Ben C says:

      10:45am | 14/11/12

      Touche, Tim.

    • Don says:

      06:03am | 14/11/12

      Test cricket lost me a long time ago. Meh.

    • Colin says:

      06:04am | 14/11/12

      “Go on, give it your best shot….”

      OK.

      Cricket is a simulacrum of the typical Australian male brain; it is slow, it is bland, and it is full of pointless idioms

      Cricket is as pertinent to the intellectual growth of human beings as is Paris Hilton. It is a shining exemplar of All That is Wrong in the World, with its idiotic and arbitrary Rules of Play, its promotion of athleticism over intelligence, and its perpetuation of the ideas that “Team sports” are - in any way - fair and equitable…

      Cricket - along with AFL football, V8 Supercar racing, Rugby League and beer - is a soporific for the Drooling Masses. If cricket were an animal, it would have been kicked out of the nest by its mother, relegated to die in the cold like any other ill-bred progeny.

      And as for Michael Clarke; he is just one member of a team of archetypal Australian males whose collective IQ is equivalent to that of a bowl of tapioca.

    • HappyG says:

      07:48am | 14/11/12

      Oh look. Sheldon Cooper has come out to play.

      What a “Big Girls Blouse”.

      Troll on idiot.

      *sits back and waits for pseudo intellectual reply*

    • Colin's Mum says:

      08:22am | 14/11/12

      I just love reading inane dribble from someone trying that little bit too hard to be an intellectual. Bat on, Colin.

    • Webbymoto says:

      08:25am | 14/11/12

      I call “troll”.

      Seriously, if you dislike Cricket so much, why read the story to begin with? And then why bother commenting? Is it merely an effort to get people replying to you to give yourself some kind of self imposed glory?

      Your analysis of sport is laughable, sport represents all that is wrong with the world? Really? Over simplification much? And sport isn’t supposed to grow us as human beings, it is a pursuit of entertainment. If you wanted to claim that sport is a scourge on society merely because it doesn’t grow us, why not just outlaw all entertainment? I mean, what form of entertainment actually does “grow” us?

      You are either a massive troll or a pompous twit staring down his nose at anyone who dare think that life should be in any way enjoyable. For your sake, I truly hope it’s the former.

    • Rex says:

      08:38am | 14/11/12

      Besides that, who eats tapioca these days?

    • Colin says:

      08:46am | 14/11/12

      @  HappyG

        “Sits back and waits for pseudo intellectual reply”

      - Yes, of course; anyone who even hints at being even slightly more intelligent than your average knuckle-dragger is a"Pseudo” intellectual. Real intellectuals use words with fewer syllables to signify the depth of their ability in conversation…obviously.

      @ Colin’s mum
      @ Webbymoto

      Gee, guys, did I upset your widdle apple-cart of reality so much that you uncorked that whole bottle of vitriol..? Obviously that anger is elicited as a result of getting too close to the truth…

    • HappyG says:

      09:04am | 14/11/12

      Gee @Colin. Two replies to your original dribblings that both questioned your intellect. Either we’re both wrong or you just aren’t as smart as you think you are. Never mind rush off to the thesaurus and impress us all with your big words.

    • I hate pies says:

      09:11am | 14/11/12

      Please Colin, tell us what you enjoy, so we can deride it.

    • TRBNGR says:

      09:12am | 14/11/12

      Man, was Einstein ever wrong? The stupidity of people continues to astound me.

    • Borderer says:

      09:32am | 14/11/12

      Colin
      Sorry but your analysis is flawed, test cricket is a game of strategy, hence why it is played for 5 days.
      Your analysis is perhaps only served in looking at 20/20 or one day games. In your vain attempt to troll by appearing to claim intellectual superiority you have instead revealed the flawed “Paris Hilton” superficiality you so scorn in your post.
      Test cricket is not just a game of athleticism as you so dryly tag it as there are greater factors involved than just batting, bowling and fielding. These include the weather, condition and wear on the wicket, levels of exhaustion in your attacking players (bowlers), timing of a declaration in order to best achieve a result and the list goes on. All such factors you have so readily dismissed move the game beyond the mere athletics that you find so vulgar, a realisation you could have achieved if your cranium weren’t so solidly lodged in your posterior

    • Colin says:

      09:45am | 14/11/12

      @ HappyG 09:04am | 14/11/12

      “Gee @Colin. Two replies to your original dribblings that both questioned your intellect…”

      I see. And your - obvious, banal, childish, and predictable - responses to my having a go at your precious cricket illustrate your intellect, do they..?

      Oh, touché, HappyG, touché...

    • PsychoHyena says:

      09:52am | 14/11/12

      @Colin, actually real intellectuals do use words with fewer syllables in order to relate to a wider audience, those who use words with a greater number of syllables are either trying to look more intelligent or are developing their message for.

      e.g. a doctor will use specific words related to their field when talking to other doctors in that field, otherwise they will use a broader language with doctors outside of that field and and even broader language when talking with patients.

      Given that many sports clubs do hold fundraisers for community groups, etc and that sports clubs also provide an opportunity for people with differing interests to find a common ground, your definition of sport is inaccurate.

      But let us assume that you are correct with your definition, how then does this apply to women that play sport? They must also be contributing to society’s ills and have an IQ level lower than that of a bowl of tapioca.

      Your rants and ravings are nothing but rants and ravings and as such are indicative of your personality type, which must be somewhat akin to Arnold J. Rimmer.

    • Colin says:

      09:59am | 14/11/12

      @Borderer

      *Yawn*

      Attempts at intellectualising the antics of flanneletted fools disporting themselves on a field is just plain lame. Save it for the knuckle-draggers in the local pub who think that you have something cerebral to say.

    • PsychoHyena says:

      10:30am | 14/11/12

      @Borderer, unfortunately Colin appears to liken sport to war, this is based on the concept that sport is the cause of the world’s ills. Colin’s consideration is that only meatheads join the military, the fact that there must be intelligence in at least the upper echelons of the military to consider strategy and then intelligence in the lower echelons to enact those strategies and to adapt to changing circumstances, does not even equate inside Colin’s head.

      I wonder if Colin plays Chess, if so then he is displaying the same undeveloped characteristics that he accuses sport players of, in fact Chess enables people who are incapable of adapting to rapidly changing circumstances to still perform. What’s worse? Someone who is capable of adjusting to a rapidly changing situation or someone who has to take a considerable amount of time in order to adjust?

    • Borderer says:

      11:26am | 14/11/12

      @PsychoHyena
      More evident is his contruction of a “Colinland” akin to Rimmerworld with
      “Team sports” are - in any way - fair and equitable…

      Indeed, niether is life or shoud I say, reality.

      @Colin
      Attempts at intellectualising the antics of flanneletted fools disporting themselves on a field is just plain lame.

      A weak person displays their strengths so not to expose their vulnerabilities, a great person embraces all, both the phyical and the interllectual in order to master the world. Dismissing such things and calling them lame displays your flaws in a Sheldon Cooperesque manner.

    • Colin says:

      11:36am | 14/11/12

      @PsychoHyena

      “Colin’s consideration is that only meatheads join the military, the fact that there must be intelligence in at least the upper echelons of the military to consider strategy and then intelligence in the lower echelons to enact those strategies…”

      Apart from the fact that we were talking about cricket, do you really think that your aside actually makes any sense? “Oh”, says PH, “The big brass at the top of the tree know how to move people about in a fashion that enables them to kill or maim other groups of people. Ergo; they must be geniuses…”

      Ever seen the inside of an abattoir? Cattle and sheep are killed, skinned and cut-up with military precision by some of the most basic people you would ever care to meet, following the orders of others of their kind who have done the job for long enough to know how to direct them in the sequences required…

      Ritual, process, procedure, rote, and following orders does not constitute sapience, intelligence, or cerebral ability. Quite the opposite.

    • Colin says:

      11:46am | 14/11/12

      @ Borderer

      “A weak person displays their strengths so not to expose their vulnerabilities, a great person embraces all, both the phyical (sic) and the interllectual in order to master the world…”

      Gosh. Is that one of those grandiose Pearls of Wisdom that you trot out to the starry-eyed ne’er-do-wells who you pontificate to at your local bowls club as proof of your self-assessed sapience..?

    • marley says:

      11:58am | 14/11/12

      Cricket is a sport.  Complaining about its lack of contribution to human mental growth has about the same level of intellectual rigour and relevance as complaining about the failure of astrophysics to improve the calibre of the Wallabies.  It is not a particularly intelligent comment.

      As for the game being kicked out of its nest:  most people with more than a superficial knowledge of the world know that that happened some years ago, and that the future of the game now lies with the millions of followers of the game in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.  Categorising those people as “the drooling masses” is replete not just with class prejudice but with race prejudice as well.  Again, scarcely a sign of high intelligence.

      As for team sports not being fair and equitable - perhaps not.  Neither are the stock markets.  Or the selection committees for the Nobel Prizes.  That’s life.

    • Borderer says:

      12:41pm | 14/11/12

      @Colin
      Gosh. Is that one of those grandiose Pearls of Wisdom that you trot out to the starry-eyed ne’er-do-wells who you pontificate to at your local bowls club as proof of your self-assessed sapience..?

      Bwahahaha, not even close to being that old. Swing and a miss dear Colin, out by decades.
      All this because you were consistantly picked last for teams at lunch.

    • Yuri says:

      12:52pm | 14/11/12

      Judging by your posts Colin, I would have to conclude that you also consider the rules of grammar and sentence structure to be idiotic and arbitrary.

    • Colin's Professor says:

      01:13pm | 14/11/12

      @Colin: 

      Simulacrum?  You realise there’s two definitions, and one of those is “2. An unsatisfactory imitation or substitute”?  If you’re going to pretend at intellectual adequacy, avoid ambiguity.  Clarity:  Fail.

      AFL Football is properly and official known as “Australian Football”.  Your statement says “Australian Football Leage Football” which is nonsensical at best.  Accuracy and Brevity:  Fail.

      Your IQ claim requires sources.  Ridiculous assertion of facts is best left to the lower classes.  Back up your facts.  Integrity:  Fail.

      Your argument is perhaps cogent, but as we’ve previously discussed, your execution still leaves much to be desired.  Please see me after class.

    • Tubesteak says:

      01:45pm | 14/11/12

      Dammit, marley, why do you always say what I want to say before I have a chance to read through these threads and have an opportunity to comment

    • sir ronald bradnam says:

      06:21am | 14/11/12

      You still dont see kids running around with Michael Clarke cricket shirts on instead of Beckham, Suarez etc.

    • Gen Y soft says:

      08:50am | 14/11/12

      David Beckham was the one who started all of this dressing up like a girl, modelling your ass nonsense. Beckham you are kidding put a Messi shirt on your kid.

    • Dave-o says:

      10:12am | 14/11/12

      Nonsense, our opening bowler came back from the sports store last week with a new Spartan bat and pads. He said he walked in and told them to give them what Pup endorses.

      I replied he was lucky not to be going out to bat in nothing but Davenport undies.

    • Porter says:

      06:24am | 14/11/12

      He could have declared earlier, made a game out of it.  They will not become number one by playing for draws.

    • Chump Chomsky says:

      07:48am | 14/11/12

      +1

      After the wash out on Saturday it was obvious we were playing for a draw.

      Lucky Duminy got injured or we could have been even further behind the 8 ball at that stage.

    • clarke and his bonds ad says:

      06:26am | 14/11/12

      Can’t stand the guy and it rests on two pieces of evidence. One - that advertisement he made for Bonds? where he was catching tennis balls in his underpants, otherwise nude thereby making sure we got to see his tattoos in the process- exhibit a - a show pony.

      2nd piece of evidence- all the ads he has done where he ensures his shirt is lifted up just enough so that you can see his tattoos. Can’t stand tattoos and his are particularly distasteful and out of character for someone playing “a gentleman’s game”.

    • Gregg says:

      07:48am | 14/11/12

      I think cricket is more about cricketting prowess more than anything.

    • Pat Rafter says:

      08:55am | 14/11/12

      You gotta admit he has a cute ass

    • Bomb78 says:

      02:03pm | 14/11/12

      Pat I think you’re right - my gay friends love Clarke.

    • Steve says:

      06:36am | 14/11/12

      Ummmm you sound like a bit of a twat. I agree with you, there are lots of haters and I have always thought Clarke would be a great captain and said as much. In fact all of my mates all agreed, and we are all 25. What exactly is the point of this article?

      Oh and Ian Chappell is one of the biggest fans of Clarke’s captaincy, always has been because he is an aggressive captain.

      Not sure if he is THE best batsman in the world, but he is up there with Sangakkara and Amla.

    • Kathy R says:

      07:45am | 14/11/12

      If the PUP monniker was dropped it would help. Reminds me of o Shih Tzu with a bow in the hair.
      I am warming to him as a quality batsman, he will bring the public along the more successful the test team becomes.

    • Mont says:

      07:46am | 14/11/12

      He is a twat that is batting well at the moment

    • Achmed says:

      08:16am | 14/11/12

      +1 Agreed

    • Knemon says:

      07:50am | 14/11/12

      I was one of those haters…I was wrong. There you go Ant.

    • Bec says:

      08:01am | 14/11/12

      He improved the moment he got rid of his attention seeking girlfriend, professionally and personally. I’ve always liked him I just wish he’d tell Pointing its time to go.

    • Gregg says:

      08:03am | 14/11/12

      I like a lot of others had doubts about the decision to hand the captaincy to Clarke at the time, not so much because of any of his personal traits but he has had a dodgy back and there had been some dodgy from as well, possibly associated with the back too but it seems that may be behind him in more ways than one now and let us hope so for he has certainly shown since becoming captain that the captaincy is in good hands.

      Did you note that even his bride has the confidence to have him holding her shoes!

      A couple of new batsmen, ditto bowlers and a youngish wicketkeeper and Clarke with his performances will have the respect of his team and with Punter and Mr Cricket probably not so long off retiring which will be good for more injection of new and hopefully younger blood and we will in a couple of years have a team led by Clarke that will be seen more as his team and we may well see another era of cricket good for Australia.

      Australian Captains are all very much individuals with their different stamps they put on teams from the toughness and gruffness of Chapelli to some with somewhat of a softer side like Taylor seemed to have as far as I was concerned and I put that down to him inheriting a side very much at the top.
      Border a great player himself and a fine captain too was one who had some team building to do just like Clarke.

    • Fed Up says:

      08:05am | 14/11/12

      It’s like baseball but on prosac….half the idiots playing cricket cant even throw a ball properly and only one or two that look like their athletes.
      Give me MLB anyday…...and the NFL

    • I hate pies says:

      09:15am | 14/11/12

      You don’t really get it do you? Have you seen the likes of Brett Lee, Glenn McGrath, Peter Siddle et al throw a ball 70 metres straight over the top of middle stump?
      If you define athleticism as having a big arse and being juiced up to your eyeballs then baseballers are the elite.
      Go back to America.

    • Woodsy says:

      11:45am | 14/11/12

      @Fed Up - How do you explain C.C. Sabathia then?.....

    • I hate pies says:

      08:09am | 14/11/12

      I was never a hater, but I didn’t think he could reach the heights he has as a batsman. He’s far and away the highest test run scorer this year, and averaging 111; awesome.
      I’ve been very impressed by his captaincy; good to see an agressive captain again, and the team seems to be galvanised and playing with confidence under him. I couldn’t give a rats about what they do off the field; for mine the most important thing is that the Australian captain gives his all for his country every time, and always puts the team first, which Clarke does every time.
      Although, I still can’t believe they left Mitch Starc out of the team for the first test.

    • S.L says:

      08:11am | 14/11/12

      I’m not or never would consider myself a Clarke “hater” but I still see him as a pretensious wanker.
      Chasing publicity with a girlfriend who came with enough baggage to fill an aircraft carrier was a poor choice for a then captain elect.
      His “tattoo show” at every opportunity is in poor taste too.
      Displaying flashy cars and living the high life on the back of the enormous salary he gets while playing a game that’s only played at test level in 10 countries keeps the perception he’s out of touch with the average Joe Blow.
      Ant this article should have been posted after the test series, not after just one good innings…...............

    • tez says:

      08:29am | 14/11/12

      So he got 100 is that a good score

    • sunny says:

      03:34pm | 14/11/12

      I’ve had many many scores of 100 or more, but away from the golf course I can’t seem to repeat the magic.

    • Destry says:

      08:32am | 14/11/12

      “So where are all you Michael Clarke haters now?”... Here, Sir!

    • Andrew Symonds says:

      08:53am | 14/11/12

      We are still here in the Millions

    • Lara Bingle says:

      09:11am | 14/11/12

      Yes he had a cute ass but a very small bat if you know what I mean.

    • 2cool says:

      10:00am | 14/11/12

      I just count 2 haters..

    • S Kattich says:

      10:27am | 14/11/12

      Don’t like him.  Seemed more interested in going for a wax and a facial post game than celebrating with his mates.

    • Kylie Boldy says:

      04:00pm | 14/11/12

      @ Lara Bingle, when the garage is a bit big for the car, its not always the car’s fault.

    • Ben says:

      08:36am | 14/11/12

      He is becoming a great batsman and captain since dumping bingle, which i guess is what counts to a cricket fan. But he is still an insufferable flog.

    • Kev says:

      08:43am | 14/11/12

      Here’s a Michael Clarke hater. I applaud his performances this year but I will stand by my views that up until recently he has been nothing but a flat track overrated bully who kept throwing his wicket away too easily. Considering most players haven’t been afforded anywhere near the same level of time to improve it’s about time he repaid the selectors’ faith in him.

    • SWango says:

      08:47am | 14/11/12

      I am raising my hand for this one, never been a big fan of M Clarke for some time and have until recently still regarded him as ‘Pup’. Only on the the basis that anyone called Pup would have stood up on his hind legs and growled a few years back ... “watch out boys, I’m Big Dog now”. He needed to get some mongrel into him, a journo wrote that he also needed a ute, a blue heeler and spend some time back into the western suburbs. Well, watching him mature into the Captain with Ricky Ponting still in the team, a younger inconsistent team still finding themselves, I am impressed. On top of that, 1,000 runs (+) in a year, early declration at the Gabba showing that he can back his team… he’ll do.MC will never replace ‘Dougie’ or S Waugh in my heart from a fan point of view, but he will take the next generation of fans and players to the top.

    • murph says:

      08:48am | 14/11/12

      Here.  A good batsman and good tactician.  But anyone who ditches his team because his girlfriend has a hissy fit doesn’t deserve to be captain.

    • AFR says:

      11:22am | 14/11/12

      Are you referring to the alleged incident with Simon Katich? I don’t put much faith in Katich - a has been, who never really quite was, and when he realised his dreams were over, just went on to whinge about it (as opposed to say, Brad Haddin, who just got on with it).

      So, after hours of pissing on, a guy should be able to say “thanks fellas, i’ve has enough” and leave on his own free will.

      Clarke recently played for his local club, Wests (playing at Pratten Park, Ashfield). He spent the day signing autographs, giving kids tips and generally mingling with the club faithful. I don’t see Ponting doing that (he doesn’t even live in the state he claims to represent).

      I fail to see what the frack his girlfriend has to do with Captaining the team.

    • TheRealDave says:

      09:00am | 14/11/12

      Clarke is batting well - but to be fair - half of us here onthe punch could have scored 50 on that Gabba pitch.

      He has put some great runs on the board in thelast few years, can’t take that away from him, and well done to him for it - but he is still a knob. I’ll never trust or like a bloke who tells the team to jam it so he can ‘do something better’. Forgetten maybe but never forgiven.

    • Got Him !!!! says:

      09:29am | 14/11/12

      Unfortunately for Michael Clarke because he is such a pretentious Gen Y metro his great batting performances are not acknowledged by fans. Also as soon as he fails watch everyone get on the internet to criticize him quicker than you can say WHERE THE BLOODY HELL ARE YOU !!!!!!!

    • Bomb78 says:

      09:37am | 14/11/12

      Yep, he’s proved being a wanker, making runs and being captain are not mutually exclusive.
      His average is now about the same as Allan Border - and I’d take Border over Clarke every single day. Border was making runs when the greatest bowling attack ever assembled walked the planet, on wickets more friendly to bowlers than today’s tracks. For the most part he did it in teams that were not competitive - he started in a a team torn apart by WSC, and captained the team once again torn apart by rebel tours to South Africa.
      And Border didn’t make the first XI in the best team of the twentieth century.
      Clarke’s is a great player, but let’s keep it in perspective for now.

    • Tharj says:

      09:38am | 14/11/12

      “a hole so deep they found Brant Webb and Todd Russell at the bottom of it.”

      This is neither funny nor clever. The difference between you and most of the other ‘clarke haters’ you write about is that you a forum from which to eat your humble pie publicly. Albeit clumsily.

    • Harbinger says:

      09:42am | 14/11/12

      I reckon if Clarke had a time machine, I’d encourage him to go back and fix two things: Choose your friendship with Andrew Symonds over Lara Bingle, and don’t get all the tatts.
      As a captain he impresses me far more than Ponting did. The change is (maybe not coincidentally) noticeable since he dumped The Bungle. However in his shoes I would have been tempted to bat all day yesterday to wear out the Saffer bowlers (two more Tests up for grabs, this one was never going to be anything other than a draw). Maybe the Fast Bowlers Cadre stole his hair gel and held it to ransom.

    • theangrywarden says:

      10:32am | 14/11/12

      Agreed Harbinger. Should have opened the shoulders and gone for Lara’s 400. I understand why he didn’t though - makes him look like a team man etc. Also, it gave Siddle and Hilf a chance to bowl themselves into form (Siddle yes, Hilf no).

    • Chris says:

      09:45am | 14/11/12

      I seem to remember a blog from Mr Sharwood accusing Lance Armstrong’s detractors of being negative haters as well. That worked out well for you, didn’t it Ant? Still nursing that broken heart?

      BTW, well done Pup. Keep yer private life private, and we’ll get on just fine.

    • theangrywarden says:

      10:01am | 14/11/12

      Easy, I just separate my dislike of the man from my evaluation of his performance. Clearly, he’s a very good cricketer and looks to be a good captain. But he’s also a wanker.

      Just like Shane Warne. Champion cricketer, utter wanker. 

      The difference here is that Clarke appears to be maturing and making an effort to leave his past wankerism behind. If he can do a good five years of not being a wanker to make up for the half decade of utter wankery, he’ll have paid his due and might even graduate to “good bloke” status.

      Or to put it another way:  IF HITLER MADE A CENTURY FOR AUSTRALIA WOULD YOU JOIN HIS FAN CLUB?

    • marley says:

      01:37pm | 14/11/12

      I call Godwin’s.  Game over.

    • True believer says:

      10:42am | 14/11/12

      I have always been a Clarke believer. Perhaps it’s because we are the same age, or that I too am a ‘sensitive’ guy. Whatever. I honestly don’t understand why so many people hate him. Perhaps it’s the ‘tall poppy’ thing, or maybe it’s just plain old jealousy. Maybe that’s why so many GenYs profess to hate him, since he’s ‘got it all’ and they don’t. Let’s not forget that he is the captain on the strength of his cricket, and his character. He’s a proven hard worker and has a passion for mentoring others in his field. What’s not to like about that?

    • Fred says:

      12:47pm | 14/11/12

      Cricket is not on the radar anymore.  Look at the lack of crowds at the test.  The stadium was empty, that would be unheard of 5 years ago. Clark is partly responsible for this.  No one wants to go watch a tosser.

    • sunny says:

      01:25pm | 14/11/12

      Agree, as captain he is filling his boots. The main criticism of him was not that he drove a flash car, but that he couldn’t dig in and get the team out of trouble in high pressure situations like the Ashes (or at least didn’t do that as much as could have been expected of someone with his abilities). But that looks like a thing of the past and we’ve seen him rescue the side on a number of occasions since becoming captain. HOWEVER *and it’s quite a significant HOWEVER* a measure of judgement will be kept in reserve until we have the Ashes on our mantlepiece. That is his true pressure test as captain (and batsman), but at this stage it’s starting to look like he’s up to it - in fact it’s looking like a fairly good team overall right now.

    • Haxton Waag says:

      04:41pm | 14/11/12

      Where are we? In my case, eating crow, and with glad gusto. I was wrong. I admit it.

 

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