Marvellous - The 12th Man (feat. MCG Hammer)

Of all the sports in Australia, cricket was the one I really latched onto as a child. I wanted to be the Australian cricket captain, I wanted to be Allan Border. I spent days and days watching test matches and one day games. There was something soothing about the flow of the game, and I remember watching Australia play England in the 1989 Ashes, which I followed avidly (as you would if you were an Australian in 1989 - I will probably also follow the 2013 Ashes quite avidly, though I suspect its results may not be as much to my taste…).

So, between that and my incipient musical career, it was probably inevitable that I would end up enjoying ‘Marvellous’. I mean, I was a child, so I liked novelty songs. I loved music, and I loved cricket. I was cool with the idea of Richie Benaud rapping - I didn’t really know about the 12th Man at that point, but you didn’t need to know any of that to get ‘Marvellous’. In a funny kind of way, I think that ‘Marvellous’ was my sort of introduction to who those men on the TV talking about cricket were - I think I only had a dim idea of their differing personalities and skills. 

For me, there’s something sort of reassuring about cricket - I sort of love that it burbles away in the background, that matches last for five whole days, with ups and downs and little mini-contests, games within games. I love the strategy and mind-games involved in the game, and love the absurdity of it all, that there are fielding positions called “Silly Mid-On”.

And so the way ‘Marvellous’ took that slightly absurd dignity of cricket and put it together with hip hop tickled my fancy. I mean, I realise it’s a fairly crass novelty single that is probably nails down the chalkboard for most people, but there’s something about it that gives me a pang of nostalgia, that reminds me I was staying up late to watch the Ashes even as a child.