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Balls and All

By Alasdair McClintock on May 9, 2018 in Sport

“You really think this is a good idea, David?” by Sandy Paper.

By the time you read this, the dust will have hopefully settled. Appeals may or may not have happened. The Cape Town Three will be getting on with their lives, doing whatever the hell it is that cricketers do when they can’t play cricket – practise playing cricket, I assume.
The scandal was an interesting insight into our society. Such outrage over a relatively minor, albeit incredibly stupid, incident left me flabbergasted.
“How dare they?” we yelled. “They represent us! They’ve embarrassed us on a global scale!” Well, our politicians do that almost daily, yet that barely raises a flutter. And they are elected officials, so they really do represent us.
We called for heads! Careers to be ended! Lives to be ruined! All because our English mates had some new material with which to make fun of us. Because, when you really think about it, that is the only way our lives will truly be affected.
And we got it. Heads rolled. Insanity prevailed.
Defenders of the ban will say, “Think of the damage to the brand, it was the straw that broke the camel’s back.” Well, I agree, to a point, but the brand was already pretty shoddy to begin with. By overreacting and caving to public hysteria, Sutherland and co succeeded only in weakening it more. Sending the Betoota Advocate a ‘Cease and Desist’ letter, threatening to revoke their pool privileges from Gabba games after they cracked jokes about the team, just showed how ridiculous and petty the organisation truly is.
The hysteria ran wild and unchecked for days, and for some inexplicable reason Karl Stefanovic was a driving voice behind it. You would think, given his own recent escapades, that he might have taken a step back from criticising anyone. But no, he shoved himself out there like a gleeful goblin, clicking his heels with joy because the focus had been shifted from himself. My takeaway from everything he said – and I truly hope most of Australia agrees – was, what a vile hypocrite, and what a perfect representative of the Australian media.
It’s a two-way mirror, they claim, but it’s not. Most of us must behave responsibly in our jobs, but these idiots rile up hysteria to the point of slobbering madness. All for ratings and clicks, so they can sell advertising to pay for, I assume, fancy cars and cocaine. They paint Warner as a villain, as easily as they painted him a hero when it suited them. They don’t give a hoot about the impact on his family, a family that had already been put through hell due to the abhorrent behaviour of the South Africans, whose captain was also found guilty of ball tampering not long ago but didn’t even get banned.
The entire Australian cricket system has been an embarrassment long before Smith, Warner and Bancroft’s stupid indiscretion. For years, many have wished they would all just pull their heads in. Well, after all that carry on, I think it’s about the time the whole bloody country did.