In 2015, I witnessed some kiddy cricketers hurling insults at each other about their mothers and sisters so I wrote an op-ed piece for SBS News Online about the notion of sledging as a tactical skill in winning a game of bat and ball.  It was a clear-cut case of the emperor-has-no-clothes.  Sledging is bullying.

I could laugh at recent cringe-worthy items deemed to be newsworthy – ‘grown man ponces off pitch due to sledge’, ‘cricketer reacts to sledge about wife’ – but instead, the ingrained sexism just makes me sigh .  The real insult is in the insidious low regard for women by participants in sledging, behaving as if females are personal property to be used as a objects to damage another man.  Fans of the game don’t get treated any better either as conceit and self-interest are traits of many professional sporting males.  It is timely, though a little sad, that adults in cricket need an Ethics Review to highlight a lack of basic morality that toddlers usually learn before school – the difference between right and wrong, and Respect101.

The petty, mean gossip often stereotyped as being the preoccupation of teenage girls is characteristic of the ‘men’ of the ‘game’ of cricket.  Sporting skill is not required to win a sledge match.  Sledging pretends it’s psychology but it’s the ingrained ideology of dickheads proving the tools of a rock and a club in cricket are merely distractions to the real game of bullying.  A stick and a ball give the lads something to do with their hands as they metaphorically wank on disparagingly about the women in each other’s lives.

They are terrible examples of masculinity for boys in the 21st century and the #metoo era in general.  Male cricketers are a gaggle of entitled, self-important pawns in a business that encourages them to cheat and trade insults to rattle one another for shallow ‘wins’ that are driven by dollars and infantile ego.  Cricket is an out-dated hobby that reminds me of 2nd hand toilet paper – guys wearing white with dirty marks on them.  It’s played by lads who cry when they are caught, not when they are committing the crime, revealing a sociopathic lack of a moral compass, also proving they not good enough to win with actual cricket skills and – they know it.

Might be time to put that sandpaper to some honest work on the cricketer’s code of ethics and see if there’s any morality underneath the rusted-on criminally-inclined machismo bullshit.

Take your bat and ball and go home.

#ethics #petty #irrelevant #notasport #somaofthemasses