Wednesday, August 18, 2004

cricket bet

another day another cricket story via diversionz

100 busted for betting on cricket fights
The operation, which included 115 people, was held in the same building that housed a cricket lovers' association.
The gamblers were caught betting on battles between huge crickets

Giant Licorice Cricketers

Comments: cricket bet

I saw a couple of cricket fights at the main gambling venue (apparently this software doesn't allow the c.a.s.i.n.o. word)in Macau back in 1987.

They took place in a bamboo and plastic sheeting cage about the size of a milk crate, sitting on a billiards table in a side room, with about 50+ very serious and vocal Chinese gamblers and few curious roundeyes like myself watching.

For those who couldn't get a consistently clear view of the action, there was a video camera trained on the cage, fed to a couple of TV sets.

This came in handy when the results of the first match were hotly contested ("Bullshit!", "No way man" etc in loud Mandarin) and they played the video back. Some outcome was reached but I have no idea what it was, 'cept a lot of HK dollars were passed back and forth with much bad grace.

So yeah, how do crickets fight? Well it was pretty crowded and Chinese are champion jostlers but what I saw glimpses of was first the two Crickteers?Owners?Trainers? producing their crickets in separate bamboo cages about the size of three ciggie packets for inspection by the punters and a through scrutiny by the ref (presumably looking for steroids or a roll of coins hidden up a wing).

Then while everyone else got into discussing the form guide and offering odds to each other, the two handlers psyched up their boys, muttering through the cage bars while teasing antenni with straws.

Our rather distracted guide (I think he had few bucks riding himself) gave us a quick rundown on the names of the gladiators which was along the lines of "Special Golden Man", "Pride of Autumn" and (I may have misheard him through the hubbub) "Bruce Lee"???.

Then at some signal I didn't see, the top of the fight cage was opened, and the two bugilists were ceremonially and simultaneously decanted within.

After a bit of wingbuzzing, facescrubbing and general WTF, the crickets sprang at eachother and grappled around, trying to use their big hind legs to rip stuff off eachother for a few seconds, then sprang off again for a breather.

In the first match, this went on for about two minutes before they retired to separate sides and just gesticulated rudely at eachother. WWF it wasn't. To me, it looked like they'd both taken a dive but apparently it was decided on points during the video replay.

The second match was the real thing. Over in about 30 seconds after one (possibly the favourite judging by the outcry and money flung at grinning punters) lost a hind leg and wing covering to a lightening roundhouse kick worthy of Bruce L himself.

After that your correspondent made his excuses and left (to have a flutter at Baccarat - where I won $HK200 while only losing $HK250).

Anyway it may not have been cricket but it certainly was killer krickets, by krikey.

Posted by Nabakov at August 18, 2004 09:30 PM

A fascinating account, Nabakov.

The image of the small crate on a b.i.l.l.i.a.r.d.s table with a video feed...

A change of scale, but it's still essentially cruel if poor old Pride of Autumn loses a hind leg in the deal.

Wish people would have a f.l.u.t.t.e.r without inducing fluttery fights.
Posted by boynton at August 19, 2004 12:44 PM

My favourite memory of Honkers and Maccas back then was the same guy who took us to the cricket cage fights, cheerfully pointing out a then fairly new skyscraper with all circular windows as the "The House Of A Thousand Arseholes."

Unlike Jardine Matherson who are just a Noble House with room only for a few arseholes at once.
Posted by Nabakov at August 20, 2004 01:58 AM

"The House Of A Thousand Arseholes"
with a 1001 stories?
Posted by boynton at August 20, 2004 01:32 PM


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