David Warner has just been appointed as captain of the Winnipeg Hawks, putting a ‘c’ back in front of his name on the team sheet. In my opinion, it’s the wrong ‘c’.
He’s a cheat, and that’s the ‘c’ that needs to remain in front of his name, along with the names of Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft. All three committed high treason against cricket, so shame on Winnipeg for even contemplating appointing Warner as their captain. As a cricket-lover, I am offended by the sight of Warner, Smith or Bancroft on any cricket field anywhere. They should not be playing cricket at any level in any country and they deserve to have their bats and pads locked away while they serve their time… and not just in international cricket, but in ALL cricket.
If you catch a fox in the hen house you have to kick it back into the wild (if you’re environmentally sensitive)… you don’t lead it from one henhouse to another. But that’s what happened when Global T20 Canada and the upcoming Caribbean Premier League opened their doors to Warner and Smith. It’s a disgrace.
The three unwise Aussie men were caught out in the most blatant fashion imaginable, and the idiocy of them thinking they could get away with taking sandpaper onto a cricket field surrounded by dozens of TV cameras is mind-blowing.
These guys were stupid with a capital ‘F’.
It’s great that Cricket Australia has taken a firm stand against them, but if the fine imposed by the Aussies is not backed by cricket authorities around the world then it lacks significant impact. It tells other players and fans that sandpapering the ball is ok, really. Not such a big deal.
Sorry, but it is a big deal. It’s a huge deal. If it wasn’t for the fact that ball-tampering and cheating goes on at all levels of the game, I would say ban these three for life! Like Hansie Cronje ― you’re all no longer welcome. However, it is wrong to throw the entire book at the three stooges who were caught out when cricket has a lot to clean up and clear up around ball-tampering and other cheating.
A time ban is not appropriate (unless a lifetime ban is called for) as countries have vastly different fixture schedules, so full marks to the ICC for getting its A into G with the recent announcement that they are introducing match specific bans in future. However, when you sin against cricket at the highest level then your penalty should automatically apply to all lower levels of the game as well, and all cricketing authorities need to stand together on this. No questions asked. Do not even invite them to play backyard cricket… or T20 knockabouts.
Cold turkey. They’ve earned it.
The Proteas captain, Faf du Plessis, has himself had a taste of ball-tampering charges, and he recently called for the ICC to clear up the grey areas around ball-tampering, as that would make it easier to police. Cricket has seen cheats and chancers since the days of WG Grace and before, and dodgy dealings such as betting have always been a part of cricket, but it is up to those who hold cricket dear to steer us to the promised land.
Right now cricket is the golden goose of world sport, but if the public change channels that goose will be boiled alive… and the way Warner, Smith and their praise singers have been pleading their case in the media, the public’s lack of sympathy is sure to reach boiling point. Just scan the cricketing Twitter feeds if you need proof.
‘People have tried to paint Dave as the villain in all this, but he’s been hurting as much as the others. He just wants to atone for his mistakes and move on,’ said Tom Malone, director of sport for Channel Nine.
‘Every time I walk out of the house I do feel like there are eyes watching me,’ Warner said meekly while commentating on the England-Australia ODI in Cardiff for Channel Nine. ‘But you can’t keep thinking about that ― you’ve got to get on with life and move forward.’
Dear Tom: Actually, it has to hurt – it’s called a punishment.
Dear Dave: Yes, mate, you do have to think about ‘that’, as that’s why the eyes are on you. You did bad. You made a mistake. You cheated. And you got caught.
So carry the scarlet letter around your neck, do your time, stop sniffing out loopholes… and please come back a better man.
Photo: Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images