Giga Bites 5 – Director’s Cut

Below is an extended version of Giga Bites, which appeared in the Saturday Age on 5th March, 2011.

by Andrew Gigacz


Two sporting Ryders were scheduled to be in action last night. Paddy Ryder was due to line up for Essendon in its NAB Cup semi-final against St Kilda; and Jesse Ryder would have taken to the field with the rest of the New Zealand side in their match against Zimbabwe at Ahmedabad.

And while having two elite sportsmen who share a surname playing on the same day is not particularly unusual, there are one or two other interesting parallels between the two that set this pair apart:

Paddy Ryder is the second Ryder to have played VFL/AFL footy.

Jesse Ryder is the second Ryder to have played Test cricket.

Paddy Ryder made his debut on 1/4/2006. Fred Ryder played his last (and only) VFL game 7/6/1926.

Jesse Ryder made his Test debut on 17/10/2008. Jack Ryder played his last Test on 16/3/1929.

In both cases, the difference between one Ryder’s career ending and the other starting in is just over 29,000 days (29,153 between Fred and Paddy, 29,070 between Jack and Jesse).


Ricky Nixon has been dominating the headlines recently but this item is not about NixON, rather about leaving Nix OFF. Thanks to reader Ian C Smith who pointed out that in last week’s Giga Bites, the list of VFL/AFL players to have had a surname ending in “X” was one short. The list failed to include the surname of Richmond’s John Nix, who played 95 games for the Tigers between 1949 and 1955. Should Tom Derickx make his debut for Richmond this year, his surname will in fact become the 13th in VFL/AFL history to end in the letter X.

Giga Bites apologises for this oversight, assures readers that the Giga Bites research bureau (also know as the Gig Diggers) has been suitably admonished for it, and that the chance of similar errors appearing in future columns is next to… NIX.


Nick Riewoldt’s a happy man

His team did make the semis

Which is more than you can say

For young Patrick Veszpremi’s


Ireland’s shock win over England in the ICC World Cup on Wednesday probably had players from both teams in tears. For hero Kevin O’Brien (who scored the fastest ton in World Cup history) and his team, they would have been tears of happiness, while those in the England camp would obviously have been ones of sorrow. The match scores – England 8/327 v Ireland 7/329 were themselves somewhat instructive of the mood. Those numbers (83277-329), when entered into some mobile phones using predictive text mode, reveal the phrase “TEARS-DAY”.


Race 6 at Kyneton last Tuesday produced a First 4 of 3-4-7-2. The TAB return on that First 4 was a healthy $1577.90. Cleary it was a combination that was well worth having a bet on, or perhaps even two, given that 3472 is the postcode of “Bet Bet”.


Congratulations to Sri Lanka’s Lasith Malinga, who destroyed Kenya’s World Cup innings on Tuesday with figures of 6/38. Malinga’s six-wicket haul included his second World Cup hat-trick, which was achieved as he knocked over the last three Kenyan wickets. Renowned for knocking over batting tails with his lethal in-swinging yorkers, it’s hardly surprising to learn that LASITH MALINGA, is an anagram of “AM LASHING TAIL”.

For more of Andrew Gigacz’s weird facts and figures from the world of sport and beyond, visit

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Well, here we are. The Bulldogs have won a flag. What do I do now?


  1. Phil Dimitriadis says

    Why do I get the feeling that poor Patrick Veszpremi might be whipping boy this year?

    Your anagrams never cease to amaze and entertain me Gigs!

  2. Andrew Fithall says

    In the context of stolen photos and all the other goings on, in any number of ways I think Nixoff is a very appropriate sub-heading,

  3. Wondrous as usual Gigz

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