The Cricket world has been rocked by a ball fixing scandal involving the Australian Cricket Team on tour in South Africa.
Australian ball-tampering: Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft apologise - BBC Sport
The charges is that the Captain Steve Smith, David Warner, batsmen, and bowler Cameron Bancroft conspired to doctor a ball with sandpaper in a Test Match against South Africa.
What surprised me is that this is such big news. In Cricket's great descendant, Baseball, scuffing or 'wetting' the ball has been part of the game since its inception; as has the occaisional appearance of 'corked' bats. Scuffed and wet balls were banned in the 1920s but there are any number of legendary pitchers who have doctored their balls, or, batters who have used corked bats. Detection might lead to a player getting tossed from the game and possibly a league fine. It's generallly a considered a minor vice; certainly not in the same league as doping.
But the reaction of shock and shame on the part of the Cricket establishment is in a completely different realm. Steve Smith made a nationally televised tearful Mea Culpa on returning to Sydney. Smith has resigned his Captaincy of the Australian Team. Smith and Warner have received 1 year suspensions from all Cricket, Bancroft 9 months. The Australian Coach David Lehmann has stepped down although he was not implicated in the conspiracy.
I can't help but think this part of British Public School ethos; brought into the world of professional sport. This wouldn't have made a ripple in MLB World; but it is a story that has been given equal billing with the Russian Poisoning and Donald Trump's latest escapades on the BBC.
Last edited by coldstream; Mar 29th, 2018 at 02:30 PM..