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  1. #1
    Shad is offline Member
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    Default Scuff off the neck

    Hello everybody,
    I just now heard TONY GRAIG (Former England Cricket captain) say (Something like this, if i am able to collect all the words)
    West Indies will have to scuff of (out/up)their neck to win the match.

    what does that mean?
    thank you.
    S
    Last edited by Shad; 02-Nov-2006 at 14:27. Reason: Spelling

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    I don't know the expression in the way you recall it, but the scruff of the neck is the loose skin at the back of an animal's neck which you can grab a hold of. A cat picks up her kittens by the scruff of the neck.

    To drag someone by the scruff of the neck is to make them do something they should do but don't want to do eg forcing an unwilling child to go to school. What you heard may have been a comment on the team's motivation. Notice that the spelling is scruff (with a r).

  3. #3
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    The West Indies had to pick themselves up by the scruff of the neck -
    it means they had to give themselves a shock and realize just how well they would have to play to win. Normally, you pick someone else up by the scruff of the neck (think of a mother cat and her kittens); normally, in English, you pull your socks up when you sort out/improve your own performance. But Tony Greig comes from South Africa, and for all I know his mother tongue is Afrikaans.

    b

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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    I've had another thought, maybe it has something to do with scuffing the ball (ie scratching the ball, which I don't think you're supposed to do) to get an advantage. I'm sure someone else can advise better on this. I know nothing about cricket; I'm Scottish and female.

  5. #5
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    Quote Originally Posted by blueabell2go View Post
    I've had another thought, maybe it has something to do with scuffing the ball (ie scratching the ball, which I don't think you're supposed to do) to get an advantage. I'm sure someone else can advise better on this. I know nothing about cricket; I'm Scottish and female.
    I considered that possibility, but I didn't think Tony Greig would be advising the West Indies to cheat (unless they were playing Australia, of course .) No, but seriously folks, I don't think anyone would say any team ought to scuff the ball up.

    b

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    Wink Re: Scuff off the neck

    You're absolutely right, Bob. It just wouldn't be cricket.

  7. #7
    Shad is offline Member
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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    Thank you
    I think Bob rightly said west indies will have to pick themselves up by the scruff of the neckwas the phrase that was used.
    thanks again

  8. #8
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    curmudgeon is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Scuff off the neck

    Or the WI will habe to take the game by the scruff of the neck. It means take control of the situation, as you would if you pick up a cat by the 'scruff' of the neck

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