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Most Intimidating Teams - An Amercian Perspective

The team at the Amercian version of Fox Sports have compiled a list of the 10 most intimidating teams across all sports.

Proving that some Americans can think outside their self-erected cocoons, the 1995 All Blacks team, which was robbed of a deserved World Cup win thanks to some dodgy South African food, make it on to the list at number 10. Jonah Lomu gets gracious plaudits from the writers for his devastating deeds at the tournament.

Totally blowing me away was the mention of the West Indies cricket team, vintage 1979. I thought cricket and baseball were one and the same for the Americans. Obviously not, to the esteemed folks at Fox Sports anyway. Joel Garner, Colin Croft and Viv Richards get prominent mentions.

However, American descriptions of non-American sports are incomplete without a few gems. On the All Black Haka:
"...a Maori war chant and dance that just might be the coolest and most intimidating ritual ever seen in modern sports."
The Haka is cool? Stand in front of Jerry Collins performing the Haka and then you'll be telling me how "cool" it really is, replete with a significant amount of wetness around the groin area of your trousers.

They save their best descriptions for cricket (italics added):
"...with the goal of inducing the batsman to shield himself with his bat and pop the ball up for an easy out."
It's not baseball fellas. Obviuosly, they haven't heard the word, wicket, yet. Another gem:
"Add the prolific batsman Viv Richards, who would either hit the ball out of bounds or send a screaming line drive at a fielder's head..."
Maybe the word "six" doesn't exist in their vocabulary either and what the hell is a "line drive"? Either way, good effort boys, love your work.

PS. If you have a list or just a couple of examples of teams you think should be included in "Non-American Top 10 Most Intimidating Teams" list, send us an email or a comment from the links below and we'll put up the relevant entries on another post.

Tags: The Match Referee

5 comments

Salil said...

Vunderbar. Typically close minded American media. God forbid they actually get the basic details right.

As far as intimidating goes, WI of the 70s were only that intimidating physically.

The Invincibles of 48 were a far more dangerous side, simply because of the simply brilliant leadership of Bradman back then that channeled the resources far more effectively. Some of his tactics in even tour matches (like his skullduggery in the Scarborough festival to ensure an undefeated record) were simply amazing - and of course, that tour record should say enough about the lineup's skill.

Similar situation with Jardine's Ashes side in 32/33, where he turned Larwood into cricket's most deadly weapon. And what about Waugh's Australians of 00 (who were a far more ruthless and professional unit than the Windies, and steamrolled *everything* in their path)?

The Enigma said...

I see your point about the winning records of the side you've mentioned. However, as you say the 70's WI side were intimidating, just like the 95 All Blacks.

Waugh's side of earlier this decade had a pretty good record, but they were clinical rather the pure essence of brute strength and muscle power.

Salil said...

Partly why they were so intimidating.

The Windies would rough a team up, batter and bruise players - but they could be beaten. Teams could hang in there, survive or even beat them.

With the Aussies of 00, it was a completely different aura. They were clinical and professional, hitting targets and simply knocking out the opposition. And nobody could think of hanging in there and surviving - maybe taking the test to the fifth day, but that was it. No more than that.

As for the brute strength/muscle power - the reason they were so good was they had a mix of it all. Lee with out and out pace and nothing else back then, Hayden with his bullying batting tactics - on the other hand, stylists like Martyn and Warne.

Sportsnob (Z) said...

I think the Aussie team should have been there..these guys have absolutely dominated the sport! Surprising to see not even one football team.. But I cant think of too many football teams that were that intimidating. Only maybe the 1970 Brazilian Football team.

The Enigma said...

Salil,
I take your point about Waugh's team. We'll include them in our list.

Sportsnob,
I wondered exactly the same thing. The Brazilians were more akin to Bradman's invincibles: clinical, artistic and great at what they did, but not physically intimidating.

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