Australia’s collapse in the 3rd test against South Africa after the cheating scandal broke spoke volumes. Looking at the highlights one could see many of the players couldn’t wait to leave the ground to escape the booing. True colours. All that happened was to be able to witness a bunch of prima donnas’ inner mental weakness exposed to sunlight.
It was April last year when the players were protesting over pay and conditions. Winners were grinners as the cricket board acquiesced their demands. Oh, to have the upper hand due to exemplary skills on the field knowing it converted to juicier broadcasting rights for their paymasters. One might imagine that hidden within the contract terms, players would receive “extra” bonuses for winning. So in order to get that cash, sometimes extra methods would be required to win. Cheating was clearly seen by the “leadership” team as acceptable if it triggered incentives. Most companies would fire employees for doing the same.
As mentioned yesterday, a team that has the capacity to stoop to such levels has no proper internal controls. The coaching staff must have been blind If they were not able to see the flaws in team dynamics. While (former) Captain Steve Smith denies the coaching staff were aware of the plans to cheat, it is hard to fathom being so close to a team for so long that signs of its internal lack of governance were not evident.
Cricket Australia should rescind the contracts of the perpetrators. They should never be allowed to represent the country again, no matter how talented they may be. I would be far happier to see my team lose and work hard to turn the fortunes through grit rather than win through false means. If sponsors leave the players and the organization, no sympathy should be felt. They reap what they sow.
Cricket Australia needs to clean house. It is evident it is little more than a club run where ethics coaching takes a back seat. No trust can be restored until most if not all senior members of the management team resign or are removed. Same for coaching staff and players. If the world’s best batsman can’t inspire a team by his own amazing abilities on the field, then he has no place leading it off it. Having said that the best player doesn’t always make the best captain.
Yet it is likely a short suspension, loss of captaincy and a big fine will be seen as enough warning to prevent further incidents. Personally (and I’m not alone) I have no interest seeing cheats represent my country no matter how repentant. Smith and his culprits can play in the Indian IPL but should Cricket Australia go soft (every likelihood that it will) fans will desert them. CM doesn’t want to see social media driven boycotts. It seems apparent to every Australian CM has spoken to that they’ve already made their minds up. Good riddance. You killed your own golden goose.