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Cricket in Crisis?

At a time when the game of cricket, like many other sports, is struggling to attract youngsters, the last thing needed was one of the leading players in the world to be caught cheating in an attempt to gain advantage in a test match.

The implications of Steve Smith's support for ball tampering in the game against South Africa will be felt across the whole spectrum of the sport, not least by those in Grades cricket where there is a genuine effort to bring new faces into the long establish North-East set up.

Australia has in fact a long track record of pushing the rules to the limit, indulging in practices which should be totally unacceptable to all who play this great game, including ugly sledging, dissent and stupid off the field behaviour.

But let's not get too sanctimonious up here in the northern hemisphere where we have had our own problems, not least when Mike Atherton tampered with a ball when captaining England. More recently we have had our share of incidents off the field, one high profile example which is currently going through the English courts.

More locally, we have had our own Grades president Martin Auld making a plea for better discipline in the game, rightly indicating that when you play the game every week, you are entrusted with the responsibility of representing the local community.

I certainly hope that the events from the third test will not deflect the good work being under taken all round the North-East, including the sterling efforts at Ellon Gordon where Ian Duncan, the club's junior coach has been running sessions for youngsters at the local community school.

Ian has been attracting an average of 15 youngsters from mixed age groups to his weekly Saturday sessions over the winter, an initiative which just has to succeed.

Smith's destructive pre-planned actions will certainly not deter me from continuing to showcase young cricketers at the ACA Annual Dinner on Friday 9th November 2018.

I would also like to hear from any club that is involved in running junior sessions in order that I can profile them in our two helpful local papers.

I would be obliged were clubs to let me have their submissions by Monday 16th April 2018. My contact details are as follows -  or 07879 648953.

I look forward to hearing from any club who is keen to promote their club.

By Jack Nixon

wytbu8  Mar 27 2018 - 11:58am   
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