My blue socks were too much for the stuffy head of English cricket

DG: No, we weren’t sorry because we didn’t have one. That was just a rumor going around. It was enough to fly by and the pleasure of it. It was harmless, but marginally expensive.

PT: You have a lot of faith in my battle there. Because I wasn’t 11 and when I walked away for about 20 minutes, you and John had just landed.

DG: May I say the Cat’s memory isn’t what it used to be. It was Lamb and Smith, the best in England, born in Langebaanweg and Durban respectively, who were at the bat. The sad part was that after all that and the fun of it, which I don’t regret going back to start the new summer, I had the worst start ever. I had to physically go to say to Mark Nicholas ‘I’m having a hard time’. I just wanted someone to be able to bowl at a slow, moderate pace to get the moves going again. Serious repair work had to be done there. And that was hard.

CC: The characterization of you is that you were relaxed, but you are the fourth highest scorer for England.

DG (sound of fist hitting head): I like laid back, but I always have to remind people that underneath there must be a small piece of steel somewhere.

MV: Let’s just set the tone here. We’re in a hotel, at Lord’s. Phil Tufnell has had a pint of lager, a nice glass of red for Dave, Ben doesn’t drink and I have wine in a can.

DG: The relaxed thing was also a bit of a construction. If you can relax yourself, that’s one thing. If you can appear relaxed to the opposition, because if you show fear, you are obviously not in the right place. You know, the sled goes up.

MV: I remember when I turned on the BBC you come on 20 and I think “oh come on Dave.” Then that big drive shows up, and then the smile as you walk away. Does that smile continue in the locker room?

DG: It depended on whether I decided it was my fault or someone else’s. I tried to rationalize it. So when you get a Richard Hadlee, waving and gasping, grabbing the outer rim, you go “nothing I could do.” If I had a wild streak, which apparently could happen, then you go back in and smoke quietly. It takes 10 minutes and 20 minutes to get over it and then rejoin the installation

MV: So the battle of England. You followed England in the winter. What are your observations of this battle setup?

DG: In some places we lack talent. In other places we have talent that needs to be channeled, and in certain places we have world class talent. Joe Root is as good as it gets.

PT: Absolutely, sorry to interrupt, you know the third highest score for England in recent years is Extras.

DG: You’ve done your research. I’m a [Jonny] Bairstow fan. I think Jonny fought his way up and down. His hundred in Sydney was a valiant effort. The [Zak] The thing about Crawley is what fascinates me because I look at Zak and think he has a lot of talent. I recently saw something that I think would make a difference. You have his foot going along the line on the stump, but not necessarily where it should be for the ride, so when it comes to him, he can kill it anywhere on the ground. If he has to start looking for the ball, he has to get himself in a slightly different position. He has to close the gap between foot and bat and ball, but he has so much talent.

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