Well it seems an appropriate day to write this one (thank you Australia) and despite barely wielding a willow, I have an opinion.. Slam me down if you like.
You see after at least 10 years of intense watching in my own home, cogitation over the 7 Wisden Almanacks (thanks Jim) in our downstairs loo and 30 years of a fairly avid family following - I think cricket is a brilliant, genius sport but the phrase 'it's just not cricket' slightly bemuses me.
This phrase claims cricket to be the pinnacle of 'sportsmanship', Cambridge Dictionaries purports that if behaviour 'is not cricket, it is not honest or moral', but I am, at times, a little unsure.
I love it for its twists, turns, unpredictability, endurance, banter, for the sledging..... And that for me is just it. Cricket is the only sport I know of where psychological taunts and jest forms a perfectly acceptable part of the strategy, skill and drama of the game. 'Mental disintegration' is often hilarious, a thing of wonder and utterly effective when cast down at opportune moments but it amazes me that with this, cricket is indeed the most moral and honest of sports.
On the whole sledging is just plain, dry, slap-stick wit and banter but there are those that cross the line (of morality let alone the boundary)..
I dont know where I am going with this, I say 'long live the sledge' and long live the ICC monitoring that it doesn't over- step the mark (which those pesky Aussies have a habit of doing).
The eldest male of the household is out lashing (a little local cricket pun) for the 3rd night in a row whilst I sit at home writing a sh*t blog about a sport I have never really played nor understand and wait to be screamed at or vomited on by one of my offspring. THAT is just not cricket.