The Big Bash League has come under fire
throughout the last two weeks. This follows after governing associates
implemented a substantial fine onto David Hussey, the head coach for the
Melbourne Stars. This fine was enforced after a joke regarding spiked footwear
was made on live television. David Hussey received a $2,000.00 penalty from the
Cricket Australian Association under a breach of conduct. Most individuals in
the league claim this decision was made to acquire additional funds for the
CAA. The jokes made pertained to the Adelaide strikers, who were rumoured to be
wearing spiked footwear before the matchup on social media. These claims were
Individuals watching the Big Bash League via
the On-Demand service couldn’t locate any of the pre-emptive matchup footage.
Audiences that were watching live noted via social media that commentators
forced the spiked footwear concept. An unwarranted fine to David Hussey was
provided because commentators wanted to fill-up airtime and acquire more viewers.
Since this event took place, multiple coaches have come to the defence of David
Hussey. This includes Shane Warne, who expressed that this decision was
ridiculous and goes against the open-minded humorous banter that Australian’s
are known for worldwide. Warne mentioned that this decision displayed zero
common sense and should be retracted immediately.
When looking at the Australian legislation
for cricket, subclauses mention that team coaches and captains can
pre-emptively walk on the pitch. However, spiked footwear cannot be permitted
at any time. David Hussey himself had worn spiked shoes to the event but hadn’t
walked onto the pitch. He was found not guilty by Adrian Anderson, the Code of
Conduct Commissioner in Australia. This didn’t stop executives in the
association from implementing this fine. It shows a blatant level of disrespect
and corruption in the BBL League.
BBL Finals Top Athlete
Positive headlines related to the Big Bash
League this week. Matthew Wade, the Capitan for the Hobart Hurricanes,
performed with admirable skills and prompted this team into the BBL Finals.
This followed after a significantly challenging series against the Adelaide
Strikers. Matthew Wade himself had hit more than 130 wickets throughout this
series, is the second-highest in BBL history. He wasn’t the only player
assisting in the Hurricanes performance, additional members like George Bailey
and Jake Weatherald showcased their skillsets in the best ways possible.
Subsequently, the Hobart Hurricanes will now battle for the BBL Championship
The International Cricket Council has
actively governed over the South Africa and England test series, with the ICC
making multiple announcements this week. It was confirmed that Kagiso Rabada
had been banned from the final match during this test series. His removal
follows after celebrating the dismissal of Joe Root in a disrespectful manner,
which occurred on the 1st day of the third matchup. Kagiso Rabada began to
scream inappropriate remarks to Joe Root after being dismissed. One demerit
point followed for Rabada as well, adding to four in two years. That
immediately triggered a one-match ban, meaning that South Africa’s national
cricket team loses one of their most profound players in the final matchup.
Some unexpected individuals came to the
benefit of this South African player. Graham Onions from the England national
cricket team went to social media, where he described this punishment as harsh
from the ICC. Jonathon Trott, a bowler that previously played for England,
noted that Rabada’s celebration was aggressive and crossed the line. That
Kagiso had displayed aggressive behaviour multiple times and this one-game ban
if rightfully deserved. Another instance of Kagiso Rabada receiving a demerit
point came when South Africa was competing against India. Kagiso aggressively
shouted racial remarks to Shikhar Dhawan. It’s the second time that he’s thrown
his racist behaviour into the public eye, with the International Cricket
Council unimpressed. Continued offences could result in a permanent ban from
Old Trafford Redevelopment Approved
Positive news struck cricket headlines this
week when Trafford councillors approved the redevelopment of the “Emirates Old
Trafford Stadium”. This follows after a town hall meeting on January 16th, 2020.
It was confirmed after the meeting that the Emirates old Trafford would be
redeveloped with a new stand, allowing for 2850 additional seats. It was noted
that this new stand would replace the Red Rose Suite, providing enhanced member
facilities to VIP personnel.
New redevelopments include a newly formatted
ticket office, retail shop and heritage centre. After the redevelopment phase
is completed, more than 26 thousand fans can fill this house. Additional announcements made with the
redevelopment of Emirates Old Trafford include a new extension to the Hilton
Garden Inn Hotel. The Civic Quarter area that surrounds this stadiums will be
reformatted for visitors, becoming more appealing and approachable in the
Cricket legend Josh Hazelwood has suffered a
significant injury, pulling his hamstring during a recent practice.
Subsequently, this Fast-Bowler won’t appear during any testing matches until
the New Year on January 3rd. This marks one of the most extended stints that
Hazelwood has been benched, with Peter Sidle be considered for a potential
replacement. The coaching staff begins the Australian Cricketer has already
confirmed that this 28 years of age professional player will return before the
new seasons start.
Justin Langer, the coach for the Australian
National Cricket Team, is also considering two others for a temporary
replacement. This includes Michael Neser and James Pattinson, who have
collectively been competing with each other on the testing squad. Most
anticipated that Langer would select Peter Slide, with his performance
throughout the domestic and international seasons being pivotal. Unfortunately,
Lander hasn’t confirmed which of these three players will be chosen for the
temporary replacement of Josh Hazelwood.
James Pattinson barely made it to the
national team, with him facing severe competition from Mitchell Starc. He
nearly lost his potential placement until it was revealed that Starc had a
season-long suspension. Subsequently, Justin Langer was forced to select James
Pattinson. That decision ultimately proved to be beneficial, with the coach
recently mentioning that both players have ferocious energy and could
adequately provide the same support to the national team.
The Head Coach for Australia’s National
Football Team is also looking into other players to contention in the 2020
Season. Rumors indicate that Mitchell Marsh could be selected, with his overall
testing sessions in the Australian Domestic League suggesting that he has
growing talent. Considering that James Pattinson looks for potential players
that can be molded around his tactics, it’s almost guaranteed that Mitchel
Marsh will be selected for a batting position.
Honestly, there have been extensive talks
regarding who the new players will be for the 2020 Australian National Football
Team. The announcement of Hazelwood’s injury creates more significant concerns
for Cricketing Fans. Regardless, Josh will return to the fields on January 3rd,
The South African Proteas have just suffered a terrible defeat in a shambolic series in Ranchi. Their performance with both bat and ball was disappointing to say the very least, and throughout the three Tests, they were outplayed. These most recent stats reflect the worst in South African cricket history since 1992 when they returned to the international playing field. Proteas captain, Faf du Plessis is now grasping at Brexit as their hope to rebuild the once active Proteas to former glory.
Du Plessis believes that when Brexit finally comes into place and Britain withdraws from the European Union; they will enforce must stricter immigration controls in the country. This will result in fewer South Africans being able to leave our local sports scene and thus fewer South African cricketers in the County Championship. For some, this might seem like grasping at straw, yet we need to take note of the fact that more than 60 players from around the globe have already obtained residency in Europe and thus could join the teams in their new country of residence. As soon as that they have residency in a specific country, they are no longer regarded as foreign players.
The Kolpak Accord
The Kolpak accord came into place through a court ruling in 2003 in favour of a Slovakian handball player, Maros Kolpak. The decision determined that citizens of any country in the world have the freedom to move and work anywhere within the EU once they signed European Union Association Agreements. Thus then players couldn’t play for their home countries anymore. If the current Brexit plans go ahead, Britain will be out of the EU, and the Kolpak accord will come to an end in 2021 for cricketers. Du Plessis himself was also part of the same system while playing in England. He also referred to Simon Harmer playing for Essex for the past two years already and who hasn’t been in action for South Africa already since 2015.
When Brexit comes into place, and the Kolpak accord resolves, South Africa will be able to pick some of our South African players again to represent our national team, even if they are currently playing overseas. Now, according to Du Plessis, our best players leave the country and then the Proteas have to represent South African cricket with players who aren’t the best we have to show the world. Two such players who are greatly missed on our side are Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn. He stated that these guys not only delivered great play, but they provided a solid learning foundation for young and upcoming talent. Currently, the South African team needs to go through a phase of a rebuild, and Du Plessis has hope. He is very positive about the prospects of Dean Elgar and Quinton de Kock. The rebuild process will just run much smoother if the new talent can grow under the experienced hands of some of these great players no longer available to SA.
After being suspended from the International Cricket Council as a member, for three months, Zimbabwe has now been readmitted following a meeting in Dubai. The suspension was due to political interference from this African country. Zimbabwe hasn’t been the only country suspended from the council. Another suspension which was already in place since 2016 against Nepal too has been lifted.
Zimbabwe’s Political Interference
Zimbabwe is a country that has been suffering a long past of political unrest and sensitivity. During July this year, the political leaders interfered by suspending the existing cricket board and by replacing them with an interim committee appointed by the government. The ICC didn’t approve of this action, and the country was suspended from the ICC as a member. This is not the first time that the country suffered some embarrassment within the world of cricket. During 2005 they ultimately suspended their involvement in Test cricket. This was due to a serious of rather humiliating performances and political turmoil spilling over into the sport. Even though they are still playing at the world’s top levels and are performing great at Twenty20 internationals as well as at one-day internationals, they are no longer competing in Test cricket since then.
Allowing Zimbabwe Back In
Recently a meeting was held in Dubai where the minister of sports accompanied Tavengwa Mukuhlani, the chairperson for cricket in Zimbabwe in the country, Kirsty Coventry. During the meeting, the status of Zimbabwe was reinstated since according to the ICC, they noticed commitment from the minister of sport in Zimbabwe to get cricket reinstated. According to Shashank Manohar, the chairman of the ICC, she proved herself to have a desire to improve the competition and the conditions under which the game is competed in, within the country. She has also complied unconditionally with all the guidelines and requirements which were set out by the board of the ICC. Now the Zimbabweans will be able to take up their place once again in the international arena. Their Under-19 team will be present in the Under-19 World Cup set to take place in January next year. They will also be presented at the ICC Super League which takes place later on in 2020. Currently Zimbabwe is in 12th place in the ODI rankings and unfortunately didn’t qualify for the World Cup this year.
Nepal’s Return to the International Arena
Nepal was suspended in 2016 due to their actions which breached the ICC rules which prohibits any interference from government side when elections take place to ensure that elections take place free and fairly. According to Manohar, Nepal made brilliant progress since then and thus was admitted to the board with certain conditions set in place. A transition plan has to be followed which has been developed with the Cricket Association of Nepal, aimed at supporting them into becoming a full member once again. The program will also include better control over funding.
For the first time in Australian cricket history, they will introduce a parental policy allowing players to take a year of paid maternity leave. When these cricketers have either given birth or adopted, they will be allowed to take 12 months of paid leave according to the new policy which is described as a game-changer.
The new policy was announced this week by both Cricket Australia as well as the Australian Cricketers’ Association. It supports professional cricketers throughout their pregnancy or adoption as well as their return back to the field. It will also assist them with their parental responsibilities. The policy will accommodate players by allowing up to 12 months of paid leave for those who are either giving birth or adopting.
However it goes beyond that as well, by supporting players who are in the role as primary carers of these young ones to get back to the field and it will also cover the expenses which are associated with caring for these children as well as when a carer has to be appointed to take care of the baby. This will include the costs of accommodation and flights involved to take care of the child. The child will be covered with these privileges up until the age of four years old.
Returning to the Field
This policy which will mostly benefit women’s teams in Australia, came into effect already on the 1st of July and has been under consultation already since 2017. It guarantees players who give birth and goes on maternity leave to a contract extension during the following year after they have given birth. Players will also be able to return to the field whenever they want within the year, subjected to being medically cleared as fit and healthy. All players in Australia with either state, national and Big Bash contracts, are covered by this policy. The policy also allows for players whose partners are pregnant or adopting but aren’t the primary carers themselves, to take up to three weeks paid leave anytime during the first 12 months after birth or adoption.
The primary purpose of the policy is to extend the careers of, especially female cricketers. Once a female cricketer becomes pregnant, it usually signals the end of her career said Alistair Nicholson, the Australian Cricketers’ Association’s chief executive. This often meant that female athletes in this sport have to make a choice of either pursuing their career on the field and miss out on having a family or deciding to have a family and they get robbed of the opportunity to reach their full potential on the ground. Alyssa Healy played a vital role in the process to get the new policy in place, and she considers this as a game-changer for the sport. She is proud of the fact the women will now be able to continue their careers and have the expenses of travelling with a child taken care of.
Ian Chappell, former captain to the Australians, voiced his concern this week regarding the effect which climate change has on the game. He stated that administrators in charge of governing the game need to keep the impact of climate change on consideration. This statement is based on the ever-increasing number of games which had to be abandoned due to rain since the UK hosted the World Cup.
During the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup many matches had to be abandoned as an effect of the constant downpour. This meant that the game was suffering severely under criticism for the number of events which washed away with unexpected rain. According to Chappell, it isn’t only the rain which fuels his concern but also higher temperatures which are experienced, and this is a reason for concern over the players’ health.
He stated that the delaying of games is very frustrating, but it would be even worse if players need to abandon the field due to the harsh sunlight. He stated that in future players would have to take better precautions to protect them against sunburn, heat stroke and skin cancer. Due to his battle with skin cancer, this is a matter close to the heart of the former captain. His solution for these concerns is an increase in day-night matches. He perceives day-night games as critical to the existence of Test cricket in the future.
The Future of Cricket
Weather and changing climate concerns are not the only threat which Chappell sees in the future of Test Cricket. Another would be the ever-increasing popularity of T20 cricket. Over the past couple of years, the popularity of T20 cricket exploded. T20 cricket is bringing along a different style of play, according to the captain. In T20 the batting varies significantly from that which is displayed in Test cricket matches. He believes that the artistry which is shown in Test cricket is replaced with a more aggressive approach in T20. This dynamic approach is entertaining to the crowds and hence brings along a higher degree of popularity among the supporters.
It might however also lead to the batting style which Test cricket is familiar for, to die out completely. Therefore he urges the development of batsmen to keep the craft of batting alive. He believes that if batting becomes nothing more than efforts to clear the boundary on regular intervals with sheer power, then the batting style which makes Test cricket brilliant, will be diminished completely and Test cricket will die out over time.
The 76-year-old Chappel urged roleplayers in the world of cricket to add their support behind the cause of climate change. He stated that the rising sea levels and other climate changes could in future be detrimental to the sport. He also mentioned the effect of a devastating drought which the Test-match city, Cape Town, suffered recently.
When the Men’s CWC League 2 series kicked off in August, it was the first steps taken by some towards the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup in 2023. This week saw the beginning of the Men’s CWC Challenge League series starting. Each of the two Challenge League groups, group A and group B, consists of six teams. During the next two and a half years, these groups will play a total of 15 matches. Group A includes Singapore, Qatar, Canada, Denmark, Vanuatu and Malaysia. Malaysia is also the hosting country for the first challenge within the league and is set to take place over 11 days from 16th to the 26th of September.
During this challenge, each of the teams within the group will be playing a total of 5 matches each. Group B includes Honk Kong, Italy, Kenya, Uganda and Bermuda. During the next three years, each of the teams in the two different league groups will compete against each other annually. During the next three years, the units within the two groups within the league will compete against one another for a total of 90 times, in 50 overs matches. The top teams within each of the leagues will be sure of a place to partake in the Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier playoffs, which will take place during 2022.
The Team Captains Commenting
Ahmad Faiz, captain to the Malaysian hosting team, expressed their excitement to be able to host the first part of the CWC Challenge. He is looking forward to playing against the other groups, and he is convinced that their team is completely prepared for the challenge. This excitement is shared by the captain of the team from Denmark, Hamid Shah. Their team is looking forward to competing against some strong teams within the newly set structure for the event.
Chris Tetley, ICC Head of Events stated that the newly introduced structure which will stretch over four years, to lead to qualifying for the Men’s Cricket World Cup is allowing teams to follow a simple structure to achieve a place within the glorious event. They were also glad to be able to host this event in Malaysia and to be able to work again in partnership with the Cricket Association of Malaysia. This is also the perfect opportunity for the ICC to explore the fantastic venues which are available within the country, which might become possible hosts for future ICC events.
The second group of teams will take each other on during the 25th of November to the 9th of December when the Men’s Cricket World Cup Challenge League B event is scheduled to take place in Hong Kong. The Challenge Leagues, the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League and the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup League 2 will all be running when it starts during May next year.
The Sri Lankan cricket board confirmed that they have received warning that their upcoming tour into Pakistan is under threat of possible terrorist attacks. This has urged them to reassess the current security measurements in place for the journey. The tour is set to take place within less than two weeks. Even though it can’t be said for sure whether the team would be in any danger at all at this stage, the memories of the terrorist attack which took place on the Sri Lankan tour bus and resulted in injuring many of their players during 2009, is still a fresh memory which they most definitely wouldn’t want to repeat.
According to the Sri Lankan cricket board, the office of the Sri Lankan Prime Minister received a warning from what they consider as a very reliable source, that the Sri Lankan cricket team will be targeted in a possible terrorist attack during their tour in Pakistan. The team was set to arrive on the 25th of September in Pakistan where they then would play a series of three ODI’s in the city Karachi, and three T20’s in Lahore, starting on the 27th of September.
The SLC is committed to providing safe and secure conditions at all times for their team while they are representing their country. Therefore they are currently reassessing the situation to determine whether the team will depart on tour. The cricket board requested the assistance of the Sri Lankan government to reassess the situation in Pakistan under the looming threat, to be able to determine whether the tour which has created much anticipation, will continue. Currently, a total of ten of the best players in the Sri Lankan team have already pulled out of the set tour since Tuesday, due to the threat made to their security. These players who wouldn’t be part of the trip if it continues, include Lasith Malinga, the Twenty20 captain as well as Dimuth Karunaratne, their captain to the one-day international team.
Previous Attack in Pakistan
During March 2009 the world of cricket was shaken when the Sri Lanka tour bus was the target of a terrorist attack. Militant shooters attacked their bus in Lahore. During this attack six of the players for the Sri Lankan team were injured, and a total of six Pakistani police officers and two civilians on the street were killed in the ambush which formed part of the attack. Since then Pakistan hasn’t hosted any more Test matches until now. They have been able to successfully host some limited-overs events against Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka and the West Indies. These were done under severe security measurements and to restore the confidence of the international cricket world in their ability to host tours on local soil. Threats like these are now once again decreasing the determination of the world in their ability to be a hosting country.
Merely one win is needed for Thailand to secure a place in the ICCT20 World Cup set to take place in Australia next year. This has been a long exciting journey for a country with practically no historical cricket pedigree.
The career of Sornnarin Tippoch is a true reflection of the history of cricket in Thailand. Tippoch used to be a softball player and only got acquainted with cricket at the relatively late age of 20 years old. Only one year later, though, she was captaining the Thai national team. Now, 12 years on in her career, she is standing at the dawn of representing her country in the World Cup. Tippoch comes from a family living as farmers in the small community of Buriram. Buriram is a Thai province situated roughly 400 kilometres from Bangkok. This area has no links to cricket at all, yet when Tippoch was introduced to cricket during 2007, she was immediately excelling in the game.
Tippoch stated that she could relate well with cricket and switching over was easy because it was very similar to softball. Her love for the sport was immediate, and she also soon realized that cricket could be an opportunity for her to represent Thailand on an international level.
The Journey of Growth
During the early days, cricket was mainly a sport played by expats living in Thailand. Mohideen Kader, currently the CEO of Cricket Association of Thailand, has however been playing a vital role in changing that to becoming a sport enjoyed and played by the local Thailand people too. During 2007 a massive drive was launched by Kader to introduce young Thai games starts to cricket. These players, like Tippoch, was then recruited to play cricket for Thailand. From there, it purely became a force going from strength to strength. A massive breakthrough came when the government of Thailand recognized cricket as an official sport of the country. Since then it has grown to a competition involving more than 3 000 women in Thailand, with teams representing different age groups as well as both genders, in all 14 Thai provinces.
It was, however, the exposure which the women’s team had when playing on an international level, which caused the most significant improvement in their game. From 2013 onwards they have been part of the T20 World Cup Qualifier every year. They have also been able to win a Shield final and have been finishing fifth within this eight-team tournament. Winning Papua New Guinea would mean that for 2020 they would be competing in the World Cup.
The hope of Thailand is on this team to do just that, and because their squad has four bowlers who are boasting with the lowest bowling averages in the history of T20, this might be the year of a significant breakthrough for cricket in Thailand.