Yeah. We all love the Spirit of the Game.
I’ve considered jumping into the blogging game for ages now, but a combination of laziness, lack of time and post-Ashes depression have so far conspired to prevent me starting. Plus there’s the fact I’ve never written a blog before, I’m 99.94% certain no one will ever read it, and I just started a PhD. So, let’s just see how this goes.
I’m not sure what kind of blogger I am. If I had to describe my sense of humour I would probably say crass, obnoxious and expletive-ridden. I like giving humourous nicknames to cricketers and hacking cricketer’s email accounts. I have a secret, shameful love of the Saffers. I really love incriminating photos of cricketers, or failing that, doctoring photos to make them incriminating. I’m also a recently retired kiwi right-arm medium fast bowler. I really don’t think I have anything new to add.
Anyway. Now that I’ve established all that, me. Yes, it is richie as in Richie ‘the great man’ Benaud. When I was younger, I drove my family nuts every summer with my incredible cricket knowledge. They were so jealous. The standard response became “Thanks for that rich”, and seeing as how my family thought I had a slight tendency towards being a know-it-all, not just with things cricket-related, the response was pretty common. Now, saying I’m a bit of a know-it-all is like saying the Pope is a bit Catholic, so the nickname just stuck. I’m Australian. I’m a girl. 25. Scientist, doing a PhD. My cricket career is limited to receiving a Shane Warne Learn to Spin Ball for Christmas when I was a kid.
Anyway, I want to give my own Preamble on the Spirit of the Game. The first time the phrase impacted on me was after the 2005 Ashes. We’re all familiar with the image of the series.
After this, everyone thought England regaining the Ashes was good for cricket, and that the game can be played in a gentlemanly and germane way. Cricket Australia drafted their own formal strategic plan. Sure, people may have liked us a little more. Personally, I don’t think they did. Or do. They still hate us, we’re still Australian.
But more importantly, the Australian players all got together and decided to play nicely. To adhere to the Spirit of the Game. And what was the result of this determination to be loved?
So now everybody hates us and we don’t even have the Ashes to console us. So, with 237 days until the battle recommences, I say our priorities shouldn’t be ensuring balance in our bowling attack, buckets of runs from our batting, cunning with our captaincy or finesse with our fielding, but, rather, hardening the fuck up.