82 episodes

A bunch of folks talking cricket. Nothing tragic about it. Unless you bring up the Barbados Test of 1997 – from where we get our name.

81 All Out - A Cricket Podcast 81 All Out

    • Cricket
    • 4.9 • 15 Ratings

A bunch of folks talking cricket. Nothing tragic about it. Unless you bring up the Barbados Test of 1997 – from where we get our name.

    The toxic side to the 'Australian Way': a chat with Jarrod Kimber

    The toxic side to the 'Australian Way': a chat with Jarrod Kimber

    In this episode, we chat with journalist, blogger, author, podcaster, vlogger – or in short, the Mark Waugh of cricket coverage – Jarrod Kimber.

    We focus on a piece Jarrod wrote last year titled 'The Ugly Australian: the evolution of a cricket species'. He talks about his formative experiences with sledging and hyper-aggression at the club level and how his views on behavior and moral codes have changed over time. No other team treats cricket as a team sport like Australia does, says Jarrod, but they also stretch the limits of what team-mates must do.

    Talking Points:

    The island that is Australian cricket - with moral codes and 'good bloke, bad bloke' conventions that combine into the 'Australian Way'
    Club cricket in Australia in the 1980s and 1990s - when the game was sometimes a violent, contact sport
    The atmosphere at Australian cricket grounds in the pre-2000s
    The culture of Australian cricket that built up to Sandpapergate
    The two sides to Allan Border's legendary quip to Dean Jones in the furnace of Madras in 1986: 'let's get a tough Queenslander out here'
    Cameron Bancroft and the demands of young players fitting in
    The ruthless punishments handed out post Sandpapergate
    How David Warner would have been seen in the Australia of the 1980s
    The drinking culture in Australian cricket
    The vastly different culture around Australian women's cricket


    Jarrod Kimber (@ajarrodkimber), Patreon 

    Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee)


    Reverse-swing: cricket's ball-tampering in plain sight - Jarrod Kimber, ESPNcricinfo

    The problem with the Australian Line of Control - Sharda Ugra, ESPNcricinfo

    Crossing the Line - Gideon Haigh's book post Sandpapergate

    Steve Smith's Men - Geoff Lemon's book post Sandpapergate

    Man, Manlier, Manliest - Geoff Lemon, The Cricket Monthly

    When a tie was a victory for Border's battlers - 81allout podcast with Michael Sexton

    Kumar Sangakkara welcoming Shaun Pollock to the crease in the league game of the 2003 World Cup

    Warwick Armstrong keeps Frank Woolley waiting - Arunabha Sengupta, Cricketcountry.com

    Justin Langer's bail-nudging incident in Sri Lanka - YouTube video

    Brad Haddin dislodging the bails before the ball hit the stumps - YouTube video

    • 1 hr 9 min
    The episode that really matters

    The episode that really matters

    In this episode of the 81allout podcast, we zero in on the cliche that makes an appearance in all sporting contests: the moments that mattered. We discuss how for fans some moments take on more significance than others, why writers need to guard against falling into narrative traps, and how the struggling media ecosystem is fertile ground for turning cricketing stories into those of heroism and villainy.

    We also discuss how one approaches writing about selection, and predict what sportswriting might look like five or ten years down the line.


    Sidharth Monga, assistant editor, ESPNcricinfo

    Kartikeya Date (@cricketingview)

    Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee)

    Related pieces:

    Against narratives - Kartikeya Date

    What's the story, Morning Glory - 81allout podcast

    Rahul Tewatia and the romance of the struggle - Sidharth Monga

    Who removed my spinner - Sidharth Monga

    The mother of all myths - Tom Eaton, The Cricket Monthly

    Why there is no such thing as a finisher in ODI cricket - by Kartikeya Date

    Clock ticking on Dhoni, the T20 finisher - Sidharth Monga

    • 1 hr 33 min
    Sledges, brawls, and epic contests: the Tamil Nadu - Karnataka rivalry in the Ranji Trophy

    Sledges, brawls, and epic contests: the Tamil Nadu - Karnataka rivalry in the Ranji Trophy

    We are thrilled to be joined by two former India cricketers - Hemang Badani and Vijay Bharadwaj.

    Hemang and Vijay enjoyed stupendous domestic careers and took part in some of the most memorable Tamil Nadu - Karnataka contests in the Ranji Trophy. There was no shortage of banter and competition when we paired them up for this podcast.

    Talking points:

    Their first memories of playing against their arch-rivals
    The day when Karthik Jeshwant told Vijay Bharadwaj about the importance of scoring against Tamil Nadu
    The Ranji final in 1996 - when Karnataka piled on a mammoth score (as Hemang watched from the stands)
    A match in RSI grounds in 2001 when matters got heated and the players nearly came to blows
    The never-ending batathon at Tirunelveli in 1998
    The constant threat of D Vasu in these contests
    Dodda Ganesh and David Johnson: never short of fire in the belly
    The Cauvery politics and how it affected the players
    How Karnataka players benefited from playing league cricket in Chennai
    and much more...



    Hemang Badani (ESPNcricinfo player page, Twitter handle: @hemangkbadani)

    Vijay Bharadwaj (ESPNcricinfo player page)

    Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee)



    From Bangalore's parks to the Indian team - Vijay Bharadwaj on the 81allout podcast

    Travails of TN tragics - 81allout podcast about following the TN Ranji side

    The Tamil Nadu - Karnataka rivalry through the ages - V Ramnarayan - ESPNcricinfo

    When brothers were pitted against each other in the final - Deccan Herald

    Karnataka retain title with innings win - match report of the 2015 Ranji final - ESPNcricinfo

    Hemang Badani interview with Reena D'Souza

    Vijay Bharadwaj interview with Karthik Jeshwant for Star Sports Kannada

    • 59 min
    The iconic shot that captured the Madras tie

    The iconic shot that captured the Madras tie

    In this special episode of the 81allout podcast, we chat with the photographer Mala Mukerjee on her historic photo from the tied Test in Madras in 1986.

    Ms Mukerjee watched the last day of that famous Test from the stands in Chepauk and, while anticipating a thrilling finish, clicked a number of photos that captured the dramatic finish. The most famous of those was the shot she clicked at the very end of the match.

    Ms Mukerjee has gone on to become an internationally renowned photographer and has held several exhibitions around the world. Her many accolades and awards include honors from the Photographic Resource Centre in Boston, the Academy of Visual Media in New Delhi, and the Bangladesh Photographic Society.

    You can view her work here.

    Talking points:

    Memories of the final day from Chepauk in 1986

    The circumstances that helped her be at the right place at the right time

    The tension enveloping the ground in the final overs

    The challenges posed by the fading light

    The final ball and the historic click

    A visit from N Ram, the editor of The Hindu

    The Hindu front page the next day

    The blatant copyright infringement that the photograph has suffered

    The luck and skill involved in cricket photography


    Mala Mukerjee

    Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@Sidvee)



    When a tie was a victory for Border's battlers - 81allout podcast with Michael Sexton

    Scorecards of the tied Test – Chennai ’86

    Madras Magic – a documentary on the Chennai tied Test

    Martin Smith on how the tied Test ended the career of Vikram Raju

    Arunabha Sengupta on the dramatic last day of the Madras Test

    Dean Jones and the second tied Test at the Bradman Museum

    • 33 min
    The Allrounders

    The Allrounders

    The purple patch of Ben Stokes has provoked a lot of discussion about the greatest allrounders. We take a deep-dive to talk about the role of allrounders in Test cricket, the great allrounders over the years, and how to make sense of their immense contributions.

    Our guests for the episode are Arj and Rav. They have recently started a cricket project called CricVestigate which aspires to uncover hidden cricket truths - past and present, and to provide alternative opinions and analysis.

    Talking points:

    What is a good definition for an allrounder?

    The allrounder index created by CricVestigate to rank the allrounders

    Batting allrounders vs Bowling allrounders

    Great cricketer vs Great allrounder

    The pitfalls of the allrounder obsession and its impact on team balance

    Narrative fallacies around allrounders - mixing formats, aggregate career stats vs peak phase stats

    Is it possible to nurture an allrounder?

    Do the different skills of an allrounder necessarily add value to the team?

    Are wicketkeeper-batsmen allrounders? Making sense of the Gilchrist phenomenon

    Allrounders XI playing in their positions



    Rav (@rav_man0)

    Mahesh Sethuraman (@cornerd)


    Lead image from Wisden.com


    Cricinfo's S. Rajesh on Gary Sobers - an allrounder like no other and Imran Khan - A giant among allrounders

    Gideon Haigh on Garry Sobers and Kapil Dev

    Osman Samiuddin on Imran - the original transformer

    Cricinfo's Greatest allrounder poll

    Kartikeya Date on Kallis, a great batsman but no allrounder

    CricVestigate's allrounder index:

    • 1 hr 43 min
    Street cricket chronicles: TN - the land of idea batting, sodukku ball, and face bowling

    Street cricket chronicles: TN - the land of idea batting, sodukku ball, and face bowling

    Street cricket chronicles moves to Tamil Nadu and we were delighted to be joined by Tamil Nadu's promising wicketkeeper batsman Narayan Jagadeesan to talk about playing amateur cricket in his formative years in Coimbatore and the influence of tennis ball cricket on some of the TN legends. We also bring plenty of color from the street cricket culture in Chennai.

    Jagadeesan opens up about his journey from Coimbatore to the Tamil Nadu Ranji side, playing alongside TN legends, being part of the CSK squad, and about working with Dinesh Karthik and MS Dhoni.

    Talking points:

    The hierarchy of balls: Rubber, Cork, Rubber-Cork, Tennis - Mercury > Cosco, Leather

    First world problem of poor outfield in Coimbatore vs no field in Chennai

    The legend who may or may not have taught L Balaji on how to grip a cricket ball

    Boost-Bournvita bat, maavu bat, oil bat, oil sheet bat, modus operandi of seasoning the bats

    Different dynamics of sodukku ball in Tennis ball vs Cricket ball

    Transitioning from Tennis ball to professional cricket - influence of bat flow and the great horizontal swing

    Common grounds of conflict - right arm over, edged but wide, constantly changing popping crease, line belongs to the umpire

    Local cricket parlance - Idea batting/bowling, tough-a-podu, OC gajee, adeetail, maanga, bat-pitch, kaatu suthal

    Characters of the game - Idea Mani, Veera Afridi, Switch-grip batsman

    Imitating Dhoni-Gilchrist-Haddin, bowling like Mohammad Zahid, copying Dravid's classical leave and Azhar's flicks

    International cricketers best suited for Chennai street cricket

    Substantial rise in representation of district players in Tamil Nadu

    Being part of TN team and CSK squad

    Contrasting experience of working with Dinesh Karthik and MS Dhoni


    Narayan Jagadeesan

    Ashoka Rao (@Abvan)

    Mahesh Sethuraman (@cornerd)


    Lead image from here


    Ashwin talking about his street cricket experiences (From 20.57)

    Glossary of street cricket terms in TN

    Street Cricket Chronicles from West Bengal - 81allout archive

    Street Cricket Chronicles from Delhi – 81allout archive

    Street Cricket Chronicles from Karnataka – 81allout archive

    • 1 hr 40 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
15 Ratings

15 Ratings

Mihirjayaraman ,

The best Cricket Podcast there is!

The title of this podcast series is an amusing nod to one of India’s inglorious cricket test performances abroad. (the star cast of VVS, Dravid, Tendulkar, Ganguly and Azhar were bowled out for 81 in an unpredictable Barbados pitch while chasing 120 in Brian Lara’s first bout as captain).

However, this title is not suggestive to the content of the episodes. This isn’t about the Indian cricket team’s failures abroad that fans (like me) growing up in the 90’s were accustomed to witnessing. This long-form podcast series takes an in-depth look at the finer and not-so-obvious facets of the game of cricket.

Seasoned cricket journalist (ex-Wisden Cricinfo) and writer Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee on Twitter) brings in special guests on each episode to dissect, deliberate and at most times joyfully reminisce the game. What sets the show apart is that it goes beyond conventional banalities to explore deeper themes and narratives both from the ringside press-box view and at the same time as a fan watching the game from a distance.

Immersive details, witty anecdotes and incredible storytelling from Siddhartha and his guests make this an enjoyable listen setting me back into nostalgia whilst educating us about aspects of the game that we were missing from mere scorecards and live commentary. A must subscribe for any cricket fan and a worthy listen for any sports fan keen on understanding as to what makes cricket capture the imagination of so many aficionados around the world.

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