Crocodile Tears of a Nation

This is pathetic:

An emotional Steve Smith has broken down in tears addressing the ball tampering affair that cost him the Australian cricket captaincy and a one-year suspension from the game.

Smith cried on several occasions during the press conference in Sydney and had to be ushered from the room shortly after raising how he’d let down his father.

You cannot one minute be leading a team of swaggering, foul-mouthed yobs who are forever telling their opponents they should “man up” when they make the slightest complaint about your conduct, and the next be crying like a girl on television because you’ve been fired for your own blinding stupidity. Either you are catastrophically weak as a person and should never have been in such a position of leadership, or you’re putting it on in order to garner sympathy.

Nobody would mind if Australian cricketers behaved as gentlemen, as the New Zealanders do, and got a little emotional as Brendon McCullum sometimes did. It is the flip-flopping from one ludicrous extreme to the other that I find so grating, and which I mentioned in my previous post. But this is probably a symptom of the country as a whole: for all Australians’ reputation as being tough, frontier folk (which they undoubtedly once were) they are rapidly becoming a nation of insecure, rather pathetic individuals desperate to score woke points from one another with excruciating displays of political correctness and virtue-signalling. They claim to be tough and uncompromising, but live in the world’s leading nanny-state. They want to be seen as confident, but can’t abide the slightest criticism of their country even if it’s something both obvious and undeniable.

I’m being unfair to a lot of Australians, and I know many who don’t fit the description above or subscribe to the cultural Marxism which infests the country’s politics. But this is what makes it worse: Australia didn’t use to be like this, and it can still produce sensible people, but they seem to be lost at sea without a rudder. Instead of trying to tread a normal, sensible path they lurch from one extreme to the other, yelling from the rooftops in a manner which seems extremely artificial. Not everything needs to be hyped up to eleven.

Could Steve Smith and the rest of the Australian team not just gone out there, played cricket, done their best, and bask in either the glory of victory or go home and lick their wounds? That’s what every other team does, it doesn’t have to be the travelling circus it’s been turned it into. England might not be very good at cricket, but you can be sure they won’t disgrace themselves in New Zealand other than by way of the batting and bowling stats. You sure as hell aren’t going to get the whole population goading the team into behaving like fucking idiots resulting in the tour literally ending in tears. And sure, cricket isn’t as big in England as it is in Australia, but football is and when the English team gets bounced out of the World Cup in Russia at the group stage it’ll only be a handful of fans who disgrace themselves.

Australia needs to seriously grow up, and this process can start with their cricket team. Steve Smith should dry his fucking eyes then get back out and make a proper apology without all the theatrics. Their new captain then needs to tell his men to shut their mouths and play cricket, and keep it that way.

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33 thoughts on “Crocodile Tears of a Nation

  1. It’s a shame the rules of the deadpool in which I compete don’t allow for mid-year transfers. Smith must surely be on suicide watch for the remainder of 2018.

  2. Spot on.

    Doubt you’ve been following the trial of Cardinal Pell, but the Victoria police were forced to admit, under cross examination, that they opened their inquiry into him without having received a single complaint against him. They then spent over a year trying to find a complainant before they eventually found one.

    It’s positively Stalinist…”Give me the man and I’ll find you the crime.”

    So fair play has disappeared in Aussie justice as well as cricket.

    As a side story, an old boss of mine, on departing from Oz’s gilded shores, was asked why he didn’t like the place…..”because it’s the world’s largest Sergeant’s Mess”.

    If only it still was.

  3. Every other team just goes out there and does their best? Nothing dodgy at all? Seems unlikely, we just got caught at it.

    Steve Smith is lucky to have got out of South Africa alive, this is the country that murdered Hansie Cronje 😃

  4. Every other team just goes out there and does their best?

    Trust me, any team that gets skittled for 58 runs isn’t cheating!

    Steve Smith is lucky to have got out of South Africa alive, this is the country that murdered Hansie Cronje

    Ouch!

  5. Smith was an ever present in the 2013/14 team that hounded a man having a nervous breakdown (Jonathan Trott), so I won’t shed too many tears for him now…..Bancroft I feel a bit sorry for, he’s obviously not the sharpest tool in the box, he’s a very junior player in the team, his place was not secure, and the people with a big say in whether he continued to be picked were telling him to its OK to sandpaper the match ball. Which of us in that position would have the balls to tell them to FO and go and tell the coach? Warner has probably been doing this all of Bancrofts Test career, he only made his debut at the start of the Ashes series. It may have seemed that was just how things are in the big league.

    Warner and Smith I have zero sympathy for – I suspect it was Warners idea and Smith was too weak to call him out for it, despite being in a very strong position, being captain, and by far the best bat, possibly the best in the world at the moment. He could have hung Warner out to dry if he wanted, but he chose to keep him in the tent, p*ssing out, as LBJ said about Edgar Hoover.

  6. “Trust me, any team that gets skittled for 58 runs isn’t cheating!”

    Well, up to a point Lord Copper. I’d like their mobile phones checked before agreeing..

    As regards the emotional display, it should make future Ashes sledging very interesting !

  7. Well, up to a point Lord Copper. I’d like their mobile phones checked before agreeing

    And their wardrobes for leather jackets?

  8. Putting Warner anywhere near a leadership position was a catastrophic failure of judgement. I don’t know if it was the coach, captain or Cricket Australia but whoever it was needs to be slung out on their ear.

  9. Anyway, it is quite common these days for people to act like absolute c*nts to others and then be genuinely upset when some stuff comes back at them. I don’t know what the reason is – perhaps our virtual social world separates people from the consequences of their actions – in the old days such behaviour “face to face” would be fraught with risks, but now there are none.

  10. Anyway, it is quite common these days for people to act like absolute c*nts to others and then be genuinely upset when some stuff comes back at them.

    True.

  11. [Australians] claim to be tough and uncompromising, but live in the world’s leading nanny-state.

    a-HEM.

  12. a-HEM.

    Heh. I think Australia might have snuck ahead of you, but there’s not much in it.

  13. Well, we’ve never jailed anyone in a judicial court for making jokes, but we have financially ruined them for life via extralegal “tribunals”.

    I suppose there are different points for different categories.

  14. I suppose there are different points for different categories.

    Indeed, and this case would surely merit a few. And this.

    Also, it is illegal to ride a pushbike in the state of Victoria without a helmet. I believe it’s the only state in the world where this is the case. Even the other Australians think this is stupid.

  15. Tim, I was so taken with your prose that I nicked some of it to use over at my place. What can I do but throw myself on the mercy of the court and beg that you do not send me to Australia!

  16. Also, it is illegal to ride a pushbike in the state of Victoria without a helmet. I believe it’s the only state in the world where this is the case.

    It’s a violation of the Highway Traffic Act in Ontario if you’re on a public road. You can be ticketed for it. It’s not a crime, in the sense that you can go to jail for it, but it’s on a par with speeding or running a stop sign. Also you have to have a rearview mirror and a working bell or horn.

    We aren’t so nuts as to require it on things that aren’t public roads, though (car parks? Really, Australia?)

  17. Just watching BBC news and Warner appears hiding behind his family with daughter in hand. Didn’t even have the balls to face a press conference like Smith, Bancroft and Lehman.

  18. “Australia didn’t use to be like this”

    Correct. I had a twenty year gap in spending time there, and I hardly recognized the place on my return.

    I think John Howard has a lot to answer for.

  19. Tim Newman

    “Also, it is illegal to ride a pushbike in the state of Victoria without a helmet.”

    It is illegal to have a bow and arrows in WA. If found in possession of said implements by the stazi, I mean police, you must have a ‘Lawful Excuse’. This is then creates field day for police who enjoy a bit of harassment of anyone who partakes in a bit of archery. Most archers there have their lawyers on speed dial.

  20. Unfortunately you are 100% correct about the current state of Australia.

    I note in passing that the Australian Cricket Team possesses something called a ‘leadership group’, and also a ‘head of integrity’. Events of the last week somehow become a lot more explicable.

  21. >Anyway, it is quite common these days for people to act like absolute c*nts to others and then be genuinely upset when some stuff comes back at them.

    And perhaps the worst of them live in Australia — Tim Blair regularly calls them out for it. Van Badham for instance.

  22. “I note in passing that the Australian Cricket Team possesses something called a ‘leadership group’, and also a ‘head of integrity’. Events of the last week somehow become a lot more explicable.”

    See also any organisation with a Human Resources position higher than CEO minus 3.

  23. It is illegal to have a bow and arrows in WA.

    Air rifles, too. Anyway, an Australian acquaintance gave me his two cents on the matter: everyone else is cheating, so what choice did the Aussies have? He also doesn’t see why the Australian cricket bigwigs are coming down so hard on these guys when the South African captain only got a month’s suspension for the same thing. Also, the poms rubbed vaseline and/or sugar water on their balls. (Lol.)

    I myself don’t follow cricket and so don’t really know anything about it; I just thought I’d throw this into the mix.

  24. “Anyway, an Australian acquaintance gave me his two cents on the matter: everyone else is cheating, so what choice did the Aussies have?”

    There are several key differences;

    1. Bringing a foreign object onto the pitch to tamper with the ball is the (subtle) line that was crossed.
    2. Australia has always had a very righteous attitude against others on this.
    3. It was premeditated and required the least-experienced player to undertake the instructions of those who were already under suspicion (look at Warner’s finger “strapping”).
    4. Once caught, Smith threw the “leadership team” and Bancroft under the bus rather than owning it like a true leader.
    5. Once caught, Smith and Bancroft lied at the initial press conference (tape, not sandpaper).

    Tim gets it right, this is a microcosm of the state of Denmark (well, Australia); the country has changed in character and cricket is now reflecting this.

  25. Anyway, an Australian acquaintance gave me his two cents on the matter: everyone else is cheating, so what choice did the Aussies have? He also doesn’t see why the Australian cricket bigwigs are coming down so hard on these guys when the South African captain only got a month’s suspension for the same thing. Also, the poms rubbed vaseline and/or sugar water on their balls. (Lol.)

    Speaking personally, if I thought the other side was cheating, I would present any evidence I had to the relevant authorities and let them deal with it. But your Australian acquaintance’s attitude is I’m afraid not as uncommon as I would like. Though why he still has any interest in a game where everyone is apparently cheating is beyond me.

    Personally, as a patriotic Australian for the last 15 years I have supported any team the ACC have played against. Embarrassing, obnoxious spoiled manchildren, bad losers and worse winners, turning on the waterworks when their behaviour gets found out, and lacking any trace of adult supervision from their alleged coaches and managers, I’d sooner support a team of bribe-taking Zimbabwean bodyline bowlers.

  26. Sorry, Tim. It’s illegal in every state in Australia to ride a bicycle without a helmet.

    Oh! For some reason I thought it was just a Victoria thing!

  27. Good article on Cricinfo outlining how cheating and intimidation has marred Australian cricket since the Steve Waugh days:

    Ooh, thanks for that! Yes, this goes back a lot longer than I thought.

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