Thursday, October 14

The walking thing

So there was considerable surprise, consternation, applause and disowning of the widespread 'walking' the Aussies indulged in today. I said recently that Gilchrist was one of my favourite cricketers and his choice to 'walk' was definitely one aspect that I admired, especially being in an Australian team. What is surprising is to see it being (is it?) adopted as some sort of team policy.

If the thinking is that Australia need to be world leaders not just world beaters, it is to be commended. I doubt, though, that Gilchrist and others who think like him can impose it on the batsmen. It eventually boils down to personal choice, and you can't really hold it against a player who decides not to walk. Hang on, I am all for it, but the way it has been far and away the exception rather than the rule, I believe you cannot condemn a batsman who decides to walk only once he sees the finger. Yet, I definitely believe you cannot express bafflement at someone who does. The basis of 'walking' is , without any doubt, sportsmanship. To look for other reasons for it or gains to be had from it is ridiculous.

Slater and Dean Jones were both unsure if they liked all this newfangled Australian spirit. Deano, for one, wanted to know what the batsman gout out it. It would not help him in any way in any forthcoming innings, so what was the point. It is not really being done for any ulterior motives.

I think all those who practise it should be unequivocally patted on the back for bringing the game into repute. It is a good feeling to see the hardest fighter walk away in a tough situation merely because he believes he ought to. It definitely does not detract from a player's fighting qualities or passion for his team. It only showcases his passion for fairplay, and I can't see how anyone can put him down for it, or question his actions' merits.

And to extend the thinking (for Deano and his ilk), a player who regulary and reliably walks when he knows he is out could, in time, create enough of a reputation for an umpire to think twice before giving him out if he is not How's that for tangibles?

update: So at night I find I am not theonly one who notices all this this much. Here's some more musings on this..the second one I find a tad silly, the first spot on:
Gilchrist leads // Dissent?

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