I really thought every sports journo and attention-starved former cricketing ‘personality’ had squeezed every bit of blood out of the ball tapering saga from South Africa earlier in the year. Surely there wasn’t that much more to be said.
It turns out I was wrong. There was a little bit more to be said, mostly contained within the Longstaff Review into Australian Cricket and then a whole lot more of the same recriminations an debate being regurgitated for a second time.
The findings that seems to ‘shock’ people the most is that Cricket Australia came to adopt a win at all costs approach. Why does this even surprise people?
I mentioned at the time, there is a massive disparity in how we react to cheating in cricket compared to how we view cheating in other sports such as football, but let’s not kid ourselves that we are a nation of sporting puritans who believe the spirit of the game or junior development is more important than winning.
Look at how Australian previous teams were lauded for their combative lack of sportmanship or empathy. Equally look at how savagely the media and public reacts towards the Australian team after a couple of losses; or how few people care about domestic league cricket.
If CA’s priorities became about the national team winning at all cost, perhaps they were accurately reflecting the views of Australian cricket fans and journalists.