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Does It Hurt, Ricky?

Ricky, first they give you out caught when you clearly weren't in the same suburb as the ball, then they fail to pick up a ridiculously obvious no-ball, and to cap their ineptitude, they don't refer the Philip Hughes decision to the third umpire! Doesn't it just feel like your guts have been ripped out, Ricky? Don't you feel oh so cheated, Ricky? I mean, what drugs are these umpires on, right?

Ricky, mate, I feel for you. No, I'm dead serious. I really, really feel for you pal. I mean, you are the epitome of everything it means to play within the spirit of the game, and to have to face such acts of deception and skulduggery, and that too from the captain of the opposition! Rick, I'm lost for words. I mean, could Andrew Strauss not tell that he'd grounded the ball between his very own fingers?

Ricky, in your career you've faced challenges bigger than Merv Hughes, but this is absolutely ludicrous. I mean, what is it about these Poms? They just can't seem to play the game in the right spirit - from bringing on a specialist fielder as 12th man to run you out, to claiming catches of bumped balls - their integrity is as intact as the Titanic.

Geez, I still can't believe these English would have the gall to select a great fielder to be their 12th man. Couldn't they find a bloke who could at least bat and bowl?

Mate, seriously, you handled the situation impeccably on the field today. I mean, even though you're the strongest advocate of taking the fielder's word on dodgy catches, you did really well to tell young Philip that he should stay in his crease, even after Strauss had confirmed the catch. Mate, that right there is a fine display of the art of astute and ethical leadership.

Now that you've probably broken a few chairs, killed a few bats and generally spat the dummy in the dressing room during the luncheon break, I just want you to know that you shouldn't question Andrew Strauss' integrity during the press conference. I mean it's really not his fault that he's really South African, right? Mate, in fact, you need to use those Popeye forearms of yours to personally eject any journalist who poses you a question about Strauss' integrity. After all, journalists are only ever about causing you trouble, right? What good have they ever done you, mate?

Mate, make sure you give those umpires hell - I know you will, because there's absolutely nobody in the business better at it than you. Oh, and Ricky, don't listen to them when they tell you that you've got sour grapes when you call for Rudi Koertzen and Billy Doctrove's sacking. After all Ricky, what would they know about how much it hurts to lose a Test to a team of cheats and two blind blokes.

You're a top bloke Ricky. I can't believe great blokes like you have to live in such an abhorrent and cunning world. You're a legend mate and you don't deserve to be treated this way.

Give it to 'em Ricky! Give 'em hell.

PS. Ricky, if you need remind yourself of exactly what happened, have another look:


Anonymous said...

I was hugely suprised when Ponting said in a press conference that Strauss had chosen to play outside of the spirit of the game in the 1st Test at Cardiff and no sports journalist that I saw made a comment about the huge hypocrisy of Ponting's words. This is the guy who is one of the most arrogant and self-absorbed cricketers out there, but no-one, till now, has said anything. This guy is a disgrace!

Ankit said...

I think you've got it right here Ayush. You could have chosen to take to this situation guns blazing at Ponting's hypocrisy in countless series. But the fact is, no matter how hard Ponting tries, all we end up doing is laughing at him. Neither does he change nor do we expect him to now. He's moulded himself as a character of great comic value, so why not laugh? What change will we effect by getting worked up about another Ponting incident? Thanks for a good laugh, Ayush :)

Ayush Trivedi said...

Kebab - a man of your intellect and general knowledge must surely have gleaned by now that the spirit of the game is only to be defined by Ricky Ponting, as and when he sees fit. Us useless commoners must adhere and obey.

Ankit - Though I do not know your age and do not ask for fear of offending, my many years on this planet have taught me that water can be equally as potent as fire. It brings me unbridled joy and satisfaction to learn that I introduced a speck of gaiety into your day. : P

Avi Singh said...

On the spirit of cricket, if we as a cricketing community are serious about implementing it then I have a radical suggestion:

All batsmen who do not walk and are afterwards found by the TV replays (through Hot Spot and Snicko etc.) to have indeed nicked the ball are to be banned for 1 Test or ODI depending on the schedule. They can choose to appeal but if found guilty for a second time (like the NRL system), thye will be banned for 2 consecutive matches. I bet we will magically see the percentage of walkers skyrocket 900%!!

Ayush Trivedi said...

Avi, why should batsmen be required to walk? Why do we pay umpires good money, install hundreds of TV cameras all around the ground if, at the end of the day, we are relying on a batsman's honesty?

Lets not delude ourselves, cricket is as much a gentleman's game now as Elvis is alive. Lets find ways to efficiently and effectively use all available resources to get the best outcome. No?

Avi Singh said...


I think you know as well as I do that umpires simply cannot get every decision correct. It has also been proven by Nasser Hussain on Sky Sports that the TV views used for contentious decisions are 2-dimensional, and when 3-D views are used it is quite possible that the catch has been held above the grass. It is because the technology is not fully capable (and neither are the umpires) that we have to rely on a batsman's honesty.

I am also sad to see that you have lost all idealism when it comes to the spirit of cricket, probably mainly due to your over-exposure to a rotten-at-the-core Australian team. I would contend that there is room for the spirit of cricket, as shown by Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble, VVS Laxman and Chaminda Vaas, but that the Australian team (with the exception of Gilchrist) has systematically eroded said spirit, in particular their disgraceful captain Ricky Ponting with his antics towards umpires etc. (I really could go on & on), while Harbhajan has also behaved very poorly.

If rules are put in place and correctly enforced the bullies (i.e. Australia) will suffer the most & pull their heads in, and soon the others will fall into line.

The fact that the ICC is spineless should not wear down our desire for change, otherwise we would have simply given in to bureaucratic inefficiency. The Sourav Ganguly option of fighting on for what is right must continue, even if there are times when fighting on appears futile.

Ayush Trivedi said...

Avi, your esteemed friends in the City of Sails will attest to my disdain towards any team with one R Ponting as its member.

However, developing an honour code is not the answer to this problem. In the heat of battle, when victory is in sight, all honour, honesty and integrity flies out the door quicker than Usain Bolt.

Yes, existing technology is flawed. However, upholding the oldest rule in the book - that the benefit of the the doubt goes to the batsman - will serve the sport well when it comes to inconclusive decisions. Far better than any attempt to fool ourselves into thinking that cricket is still a gentlemen's game, through the institution of an honour code.

Avi Singh said...

I agree with the benefit of the doubt being upheld, but why can we not attempt to explore both avenues of using technology and bringing in an honour code? Andrew Strauss again proved that the spirit of cricket exists with his generosity allowing Graham Manou to replace Brad Haddin after the toss and team line-ups had been completed. It is obvious that his team's chances of victory would have been enhanced if the opposition keeper had a broken finger, so to allow this suggests that the game does not have to be a win-at-all-costs attitude which puts the integrity of the game as the lowest priority. It is better to try and fail than to be resigned to a fate.

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