Wednesday, 6 December 2017

In Cricket, as in Life - Sadly

The second Ashes cricket test has just concluded with a decisive victory for Australia over England.

If you had listened to the experts these last 24 hours, you could be excused for thinking the least competent team, captained by a fool has somehow achieved a decisive victory.

Cricket and Baseball are games drenched in tradition and endlessly analysed through the prism statistics and empirical evidence.

The game is covered on radio and TV by a plethora of former players, all enthusiastic about having strong opinions, primarily of what they think is wrong rather than what is right.

Is it negativity or is it jealousy? Naturally, the current crop of players are not as good as in “our” era.

“The pitches are flatter, the bats bigger, the pay better and training methods more precise”. All are expressed as criticisms.

Australia elects to bat again towards the end of day 3 and it doesn’t go well. Former Captains, and one in particular heavily criticise the decision, after the event.

Sport is an activity where past players who gave their all for the team, and were paid handsomely for doing so, seem to celebrate the failure of those that follow more than their success.

We will be waiting a long time for the critics to apologise; we will be waiting forever.

Why is it the true greats of our sports tend not to gravitate to the media? There are exceptions, however if you look at the Commercial Media coverage of our sports, most commentating experts never feature in “best of teams” and are rarely mentioned as great players.

The great players also hold dignity and decorum as qualities in life, just as they did when competing.

Unfortunately, we default to the ease and intellectual vacuum of criticism and negative appraisal in all walks of life.

Well done Australia, well done Steve Smith.

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