Why a photo of the lollop though?
Well, it's the Hoggster's secret weapon.
Here's a man who looks about as unsportsmanlike as a world class sportsman can look. A man who given a little bit of cloud and a bit of a muggy day, can destroy world class batting in a few balls. A man who lives in the shadow of his team mates but despite that is currently by far it's most consistent bowler.
It's often forgotten that while Flintoff took 5-78 in the final Ashes Test last year, that bowling at the other end, the Hoggster took 4-97. He's not a man for the limelight, there's no side to him and for that reason non-cricket fans will probably forget him after 5 years of retirement. For those that love the game though he's up there with Trueman, Underwood, Statham and Snow. Uncomplicated men with the ability to reduce the other side to rubble.
What sets him apart from all the above though is that everything he does, he does with a smile. Nothing ruffles him, he never loses heart when he bowls. He doesn't remonstarate with his daft slip cordon, as they put down catch after catch. He doesn't chunter, as he goes past the edge, it's just a grimace, a swivel, a grin and the lollop.
I think the following taken from his Times column this morning sums up his approach to cricket and life. It addresses his batting, rather than his bowling, but it's the simplicity of approach that he carries to both disciplines, that is his charm.
''WHENEVER we play Sri Lanka, there is always a lot of fuss about the difficulties of trying to pick Muttiah Muralitharan.
Understandably so, because it’s bloody impossible. My solution is that I don’t really bother trying to pick him at all. I can’t really tell his off spinner from his leg spinner from his whatever-else-he-bowls, so I just try to spot which way the ball is spinning in the air and work it out from there. If I was to worry too much about watching his wrist, I think the ball would probably have reached me and bowled me before I had decided what to do.''
Here's to you Hoggy. Us cricket fans will always love you and when you retire I wish you many a long year, walking the dogs on the moors.