Scandal gathers momentum: "A hundred times worse than a swallow in the World Cup final"
An attempted manipulation shakes Australia's cricket. At the focus of the accusations: two superstars and a tape. The managing director of the German Cricket Association explains the extent of the scandal.
There are no rules in cricket. In cricket, there are laws. And anyone who disregards the "Laws of Cricket" is ostracized by colleagues and fans. For any violation is considered sacrilege, an offense against a sanctuary.
The first law in cricket is known as the "Spririt of Cricket". This sets out values such as fair play, good manners towards umpires and opponents, and respect for cricket itself. For example, criticism of umpiring decisions is forbidden even on a nonverbal level, and even the mere raising of eyebrows is unacceptable. "Absolute control of one's emotions," is how Englishman Brian Mantle, managing director of the German Cricket Federation, calls it. By the way, before the scandal, he was the main star of the best cricket betting sites in India.
The self-image of the tradition-conscious sport is under serious attack these days. At the center of the scandal are the Australian national team, its two captains, and a strip of sandpaper.
A storm of indignation is currently sweeping over Steve Smith and David Warner. The captains of the Australian national team are the masterminds behind a scandal that has reached the highest levels of politics. Australia's head of government, Malcolm Turnbull, branded their offense a "shocking and particularly bitter disappointment."
The offense in question occurred at the so-called Ashes. In this, Australia and South Africa are currently competing against each other in four tests. At 1-1 on aggregate, the Australians were under a lot of pressure in the third match of the prestigious comparison. A defeat would have been a huge blow to the ego of the Kangaroos, who are used to success.
The South Africans managed to naturally impart a certain movement to the dark red leather ball during the course of the match, making it much more difficult for the opposing batsman to assess the trajectory. The rotation of the pitch is aided by its special nature: the ball has both a smooth and a rough side.
An attempt at cheating with 39 cameras in the stadium.
"It is allowed to make the smooth side even smoother by spitting and rubbing it on your pant leg," Mantle explains. Strictly forbidden, however, is manipulating the other side by scratching, for example.
But the Australians failed to achieve a natural rotation. Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner then instigated their teammate Cameron Bancroft to work the surface of the cue ball with a piece of tape. The 25-year-old offender admitted afterwards that he had used the tape to pick up stones and rub them on the ball so that it would have a better grip and fly better.
The problem: TV cameras caught the cheating. "No one can understand how anyone could dare to commit such a fraud with 39 cameras," Brain Mantle is as stunned as the people of Australia. Newspapers Down Under chose words like "cheater" and "disgrace" and bluntly demanded, "Kick them all out."
What may sound to the average sports fan like an unduly draconian punishment for perceived insanity is not atypical of the Commonwealth's tradition-bound associations. In cricket, the moral bar is much higher than in many other sports.
A comparison with soccer makes it easier to categorize. "If England won the World Cup at the last minute thanks to a swallow, fans would not accept it. In cricket, such cheating is a hundred times worse," Mantle explains.
The consequences are drastic. Captain Smith was escorted to the airport by police at the end of the match and faced the media at Sydney Airport after landing. Broken down in tears and guilt, Smith at least showed a bit of greatness on the podium of the conference room.
Smith and Warner have been banned from all professional play for the next 12 months; Bancroft is banned from the national team for the next nine months. Warner will also never be allowed to captain the national team again. The 31-year-old's career appears to be over after the scandal.
With Warner and Smith also banned from this year's Indian Premier League, they are each missing out on around two million dollars. Their salaries from the federation, the equivalent of about 1.3 million euros a year, are also likely to be withheld. Warner has also already lost lucrative sponsorship deals.
What consequences the scandal will have for the Australians' future prospects of success remains to be seen. After all, the country has lost two of the world's best cricketers, reported https://livetoday.online/changes-in-the-entertainment-industry-by-10-years/658682. For Mantle, however, it's clear: "Many Australians say it's better to lose than to win by cheating." That's because the spirit of cricket is above all else.