April 21, 2004


Just announced: Stuart MacGill will refuse to tour Zimbabwe with the Australian cricket team.

Nothing on the wires yet. MacGill's loathing of Mugabe is the likely reason for his decision.

UPDATE. John Howard supports MacGill.

Posted by Tim Blair at April 21, 2004 01:44 PM

...his choice. His bowling average is getting awfully close to thirty - if I were him I'd take the chance to pick up a few cheapies.

Posted by: Alex Hidell at April 21, 2004 at 01:56 PM

Good for him.

Posted by: TimT at April 21, 2004 at 02:15 PM

Mugabe's rule has to be at least as actionable as apartheid South Africa. You can quibble about the morality, but the deaths piling up there have to count for something.

Posted by: Geoff Matthews at April 21, 2004 at 02:39 PM

McGill and Mugabe are both arseholes.

Posted by: James Hamilton at April 21, 2004 at 04:09 PM

"McGill and Mugabe are both arseholes."
Now that's what I call moral equivalence!

Posted by: slatts at April 21, 2004 at 04:15 PM

Courier Mail is reporting that it defintiely is because of McGill's moral concerns


Posted by: Dylan at April 21, 2004 at 04:25 PM

Good man.

Posted by: rosignol at April 21, 2004 at 04:34 PM


He's gay? Considering that Mugabe has labelled gays as lower than dogs and pigs, I think it's a good thing he's not going.

Oh ... that kind of "out".

Posted by: Andjam at April 21, 2004 at 04:52 PM

Personally, I wish the entire US Olympic team would bow out of the Athens Games this summer. I like Greeks in a general sense but I have a bad feeling about this Olympiad...

Posted by: JDB at April 21, 2004 at 05:34 PM

MacGill is 12th man of my greatest Australian Test team of all time.

1. J Dyson
2. S Smith
3. M Valetta
4. D Wellham
5. G Ritchie
6. T Chappell
7. S O'Donnell
8. T Zoehrer
9. P McIntyre
10. C Matthews
11. G Campbell
12. S MacGill

Posted by: Pig Head Sucker at April 21, 2004 at 05:54 PM

Pig Head - how in hell can you leave out D.K. Lillee? And there was this batsman guy, Bradman. . .???

Posted by: Razor at April 21, 2004 at 06:10 PM

Pig Head Sucker,

You mean you couldn't fit Scotty Muller into the side? And surely Bob Holland or Murray Bennett could have edged out Magill.

Posted by: Pezza at April 21, 2004 at 06:11 PM

Pig head sucker,

Where the hell is Peter Sleep?

Posted by: Dave at April 21, 2004 at 07:29 PM

And does the name 'funky Miller' mean nothing to you?

Posted by: Dave at April 21, 2004 at 07:30 PM

"And does the name 'funky Miller' mean nothing to you?"

funky's taken far too many wickets to be in that all star line-up

mike valetta was my fav player for a fair while. he was an outstanding fielder and we had the same first name.

Posted by: Michael at April 21, 2004 at 08:30 PM

Hey Pig Head Sucker,

How could you leave out Johnny Watkins? Maybe his batting was too good.

Posted by: Michael Gill at April 21, 2004 at 08:47 PM

MacGill has made a statement.
Money Quote: I have a high regard for all of Zimbabwe's cricketers that I have met and played against and wish them the best as they seek to develop the game in their country, and hope that at some stage in the not too distant future I can be part of that process.

However I have given this a lot of thought over a long period of time, and personally do not believe the situation in Zimbabwe is such that I can tour at this stage. There will be people that question my timing and motives for making such a decision, and I recognise and appreciate their right to disagree.

I don't have ambitions as an activist or political spokesman, and I don't want to influence anybody else because this is a personal matter based on my own feelings.

I know plenty of Australian cricketers that I have played alongside who have thought long and hard about this issue and decided that they will tour Zimbabwe.

It is a complex problem and I respect their decisions and wish them the best.

Posted by: Scott Wickstein at April 21, 2004 at 09:30 PM

Hey Pig Head Sucker:

Surely T. Chappell deserved to be included twice? And given that Bruce Reid is coaching the Indian team, shouldn't you have included Dilip Doshi as the batting coach?

Posted by: Clem Snide at April 21, 2004 at 10:38 PM

At one time I would have agreed with you, but this news has raised McGill in my esteem: from arsehole to perenium. Mugabe remains firmly lodged in the colon.

Posted by: fidens99 at April 21, 2004 at 11:01 PM

In related news, Greg Blewett and Stuart Law are also refusing to tour Zimbabwe with the Australian team.

Posted by: LD at April 22, 2004 at 01:11 AM

I have never liked MacGill - an angry, sour, bitter tosser (though, not a chucker like Muri).

Now he's gone and done something really admirable and noble. Sheesh. Don't you hate that.

Posted by: mb at April 22, 2004 at 04:07 AM

Where's the coalition to remove Mugabe? You democratic proselytisers are falling down on the job. Looks like we'll have to rely only on cricketers to make a stand.

Posted by: Miranda Divide at April 22, 2004 at 10:20 AM

Why stop there? Jordan, Syria, Lybia, France - I'm all for it - lets go! We had to start somewhere and Iraq seemed as good a place as any but I think you're right Mugabe could do with a size 12 Blunny up his jacksie.

If you're serious I've got a gun and enough money for a ticket - I can have us both there by the end of the week. We'd miss the Essendon/Pies game but that's a small price to pay for bringing democracy to Zimbabwe!

PS: I was remiss in omitting Tom Hogan from my team.

Posted by: Pig Head Sucker at April 22, 2004 at 10:54 AM

Malcolm Fraser today applauded the decision by MacGill to pull out of the tour to Zimbabwe.

And the pigs flew overhead.

Posted by: amortiser at April 22, 2004 at 10:57 AM