Hardly cricket, more thicket but

April 2, 2018

Australian cricketers cheated by sandpapering the ball in the test against South Africa. That was wrong.

The players involved have been punished. Captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner have lost their positions and been banned for a year, Cameron Bancroft, who wielded the sandpaper has been banned for 9 months and their coach Darren Lehmann has resigned. That is right.

Team sponsors have withdrawn their support. That is understandable.

The sandpapering certainly wasn’t cricket. It was more thicket with the emphasis on thick.

But the vilification of the men seems to be over the top and the reaction to their actions lacks perspective.

Cheating is wrong and should be punished.

But unlike a lot of ethical and moral lapses and crimes where the victims are innocent, the people most hurt by this cheating are the wrong-doers themselves.

They’ve lost their reputations, a lot of money and possibly even their careers.

They should now be left to live with the consequences of their actions. Cricketers should reflect on what happened and use the lessons to improve the game and the behaviour of players.

And the rest of us should direct our indignation where it might right a wrong or help the wronged.

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