Thursday, 23 July 2009

got something to say?

A dirty word to some, a tactical element to others; and it is back in the media.

S.Watson has come out and called for this part of Australia's game -that has fizzled out of general use almost as fast as player integrity- to come back to the fore.

But will it have an effect if used in the next test when it will be seen as so obviously a contrivance?
If Australia just walk out and start up being lippy, won't it just come across as a big put on to build up their own confidence?

It was one thing for CA to state (to the team) that players must be seen as role models; it is another to limit the teams ability to win. I'm not condoning a "win at all costs" attitude, i think everyone here will appreciate my sense of sportsmanship, but until talking to the opposition becomes outlawed, what is wrong with getting in to some ones head?

There are already rules to safeguard against racial vilification (although clearly only to be used against, not for Aussies!), so if a player can say something that is not vulgar, what is the problem?

The rest of the worlds whinging about Australia past use of sledging is quite frankly pathetic!
As the request was, 'make sure you know where the line is' from CA, what would be the issue in reminding Freddy that his bung knee is the result of having to carry his over sized ego? Or suggest to KP that he made a good decision moving to Blighty for a game as he would still be lucky to get a spot in RSA behind Prince and Duminy. Onions and onions make the rest of England cry... etc.

Until there are laws preventing on field verbal gamesmanship (let's hope this is NEVER the case), open slather i say!
That being said, if i was playing in the next test, i'd just ease into it just so as not to look like we needed it.

stoph verismo
down the wicket


  1. Real sledging, the clever stuff, is as Tugger said, "Mental disintergration". The problem has been since the late nineties, we haven't had a lot of clever cricketers so what has stood for sledging was boring, bad-mouthed abuse. No one quipped, the likes of Warne and Hayden just used stupid statements wrapped in strong swearing.

    In most cases, it broke the Chappelli rule of never stiring a good player because it just makes him better. At other times it was cruel, personal stuff that was below the standards of the grand old game. In the words of Forest Gump, "stupid is as stupid does".

    Whilst Chappelli won't agree that his Austalian side was worse at sledging than others, they certainly fine tuned it.

    In my opinion, a sledge should take an opponent away from concentrating on his game at the moment but the same players should be able to laugh about it over a beer off the field. Yeah, I'm old fashioned but players should be able to cop it, hand it out and then still shout a cold one at stumps.

    A story to illustrate. I played in a grand final in the Sutherland Shire in the early seventies. We were a young side apart from our skipper and we had won everything that season. Our opponents were all in their thirties and had attitude. At a crucial point in the second dig, as we batted to secure the win, one of our blokes played and missed at the first five balls of an over from their best bowler. The bowler grabbed the ball, grabbed the bat from his hands and banged them together. "Like this," he said, "like this!" The batsmen smacked the last three balls of the over to the fence and as a fuming quick passed him at overs end he said quietly, "thanks for the tip."

    The quick didn't bowl a decent over for the rest of the afternoon. We won.Now that's sledging. The two players had a beer at the presentations that night.

    Sledging is about changing the emphasis in a situation and making your opponent lose his cool. Just calling him a fat fuck is hardly likely to do the trick.

    Best of all time was Edo Brandis comeback at Glen McGrath. Now, if we can do that in the 3rd and other Tests, we will be back in the game.

  2. i agree with what you've said mate (particularly the Brandis comeback), just get into their headspace... a bit. i think just bad mouthing someone that is actually showing your own frustration and is more ammunition to the sledged than an attack.

    My 3rd favourite sledge:
    James Ormond & Mark Waugh
    Ormond had just come out to bat on an Ashes tour and was greeted by Mark Waugh.
    MW: "**** me, look who it is. Mate, what are you doing out here? There's no way you're good enough to play for England."
    JO: "Maybe not, but at least I'm the best player in my family."

    ps. i used to love the 8 ball over!

  3. I always liked the tale of Glen McGrath to Chanderpaul. "What does Brian Lara's cock taste like?"
    "Why don't you ask your wife."
    "You talk about my wife again and I will fucking kill you."
    That would not go on now and I don't see why. If the public can't hear it then who cares. This whole politically correct, caring sharing crap is starting to bring down the sport itself.
    What happens on the field, stays on the field. Steve Waugh always preached "mental disintegration" and it would pay for our guys to remember that.
    Ponting s nowhere near as ruthless as Waugh which is his major problem. It's the reason we failed to clean up in Cardiff. He should have crowded the bat to the extent that Panesar thought he had a conjoined twin. Instead Ponting opted to stop the bleed of runs, which we could afford.
    So Stoph I have to say that at this stage any effort by Australia to start up the on field hostilities would indeed seem manufactured for an alterior motive and should be avoided. It should come naturally.
    Another favourite, can't remember the batsman. Having been turned down for a caught behind Mark Waugh exclaimed "Fuck me, there was enough wood on that to build a billy cart!"
    You just can't sledge umpires either these days.

  4. 'Hey Arjuna, come come you so fat?'
    Arjuna - 'Cos every time I fuck your wife she gives me a biscuit'

    Jamie Siddons to Steve Waugh:
    'Come on mate, it's not a test match'
    Waugh - 'Of course not, you're here'

    Arjuna calls for a runner. Ian Healy doesn't agree.
    Healy - 'Jesus, you don't get a runner for being a fat unfit cunt'

  5. The biggest problem with sledging is the word itself. Banter, insults, derogatory comments and friendly jibes have (at times) all been put under the umbrella of ‘sledging’. There is a very big difference between someone telling a player he’s not good enough to be there, that if he lasts 5 overs it’ll be a miracle or letting him know what an opponent had done with his mum: and using intimately personal comments whereby the truth of the matter is used to be offensive – eg racial, cultural stuff. I concede there is a fine line at times between what is appropriate and too personal. But to draw a conservative line which prohibits much discussion that breaks up 450 overs of test cricket is NOT a wise move.

    The other issue that riles me here is the singling out of sports people. Children look up to, admire and aspire to be any number of people from the media, entertainment, politics and more – how many times have your heard fraud, drug/alcohol use, theft, arrogance etc levelled at other notable personalities in the same way cricketers are getting labelled? I wonder how many cricketers’ children themselves have a portrait of a mean, rude and arrogant parent. Excepting Border perhaps (grumpy).

    Like many have said, if the prevailing attitude is ‘what happens on the field stays on the field’ then what’s the problem? Umpires are there to control things if they feel players are making too much noise (ie TV is picking up inappropriate conversation for children’s ears) or stepping over the line. We don’t need a nanny state enforced by CA here.

    I play against some absolute wankers that I’d never have a beer with after the game. This is because they are the same off the field as they are on it. They bounce and sledge 15 year olds (including mouthing off at their own players) who are just out there having a go. I, in turn, make it my duty to rattle them by pointing out all their deficiencies. We’ve had Hills Cricket Association appointed umpires who have never battered an eyelid to any of this.

  6. Well written Lefty. I will say however that 15 year olds cease to be 15 year olds when they cross the line to play senior cricket.
    I had a 14 year old face up when I was keeper and I remarked after 10 or so swimgs and misses "More dots than an aboriginal painting out here matey." The captain at the other end fired up telling me he is only a kid. I reminded him that it's not junior cricket and no one gets concessions.

  7. Yeah I agree to a point there. I guess personally I'm remarking on my time as C grade captain where I'd round up anyone to make up the team for Saturday. Some of these lads were 12 and we were getting destroyed by sides so when opponents were calling the kids all names under the sun and trying to take their heads off, while already beating us comfortably, I took exception to that. What you say about 15 year olds crossing the white line is true though. Once you've had them smack you for four over midwicket the gloves are off.

  8. nice one Nospmas... more dots than!
    look, i think we are a little off track here, although i like what has been said.

    NL, you are the only one that has actually responded to my initial question about Aus starting up now with some "chat".

    How do you guys feel Aus players should approach the remarks of Watson?

  9. either everyone knows my favorite sledge (given i have ranked one here at 3rd fav) or know one cares (boo-hoo-magoo!)

    it was A.Parore to D.Cullinan after D.Vettori got a ripping one past the edge, "Nice bowling Shane!" in the best Aussie impersonation possible. THAT is mind games!

  10. I think he's an idiot for saying it publicly and also think that Aus has not lost it from the game anyway. Making a concerted effort to ruffle blokes who have belted you or got your wicket in the last couple of weeks makes you look stupid. There's no reason to do anything different to what they've already been doing vocal-wise. Just play better cricket!