Just Not Cricket
World Cup Final 13 July 2006
Zinedine Zidane’s family were insulted this week in front of 2 billion people.
There was a time in Britain when we might have called foul on what we still call bad sportsmanship, that which has tainted the passing World Cup tournament. The diving Portuguese were a disappointment. The sledging Materazzi is condemned already, before we even know what it was he actually said to Zidane.
Sledging is the sly art of verbally abusing an opponent in order to diminish his performance. “Just Not Cricket”, we might have said, if we were deluding ourselves to be above the rest of the world, and as if the art of “sledging” were not an accepted part of the game of Cricket.
This week, BBC Radio Four made light of this practise on the Today Programme, describing some of the insults passed out to batsmen at the crease, and then laughed it all off. Tonight, Jon Snow on Channel Four News, also laughed at some sick jokes they had found on the Internet, lampooning Mr Ziddane
School kids routinely verbally abuse their teachers, because they know they will be excused. Verbal abuse is sanctified by Big Brother, Gordon Ramsey, BMW Four x Four drivers, and the House of Commons.
Jolly TV commentators seemed to resonate with Cristiano Ronaldo’s gloating wink at his team mates, moments after his notorious betrayal of Wayne Rooney. However the Monks were nevertheless satisfied by the remarkable booing of Renaldo by German supporters in the subsequent game, and then again by French supporters in the following France/Portugal game. Wayne Rooney was somehow vindicated by the grass roots popular support of the French and German supporters of the beautiful game, who were apparently willing to side with a talented alien English teenage klutz to make this point.
Zidane is forgiven his indiscretion because his demonstrable assault on a cheat was at least expressed publicly, and how? Sly verbal abuse is cowardly and perhaps John Snow should think about the potential abuse of his own mother, before he makes light of the verbal abuse of the heroic Mr. Ziddane, and ...... school teachers everywhere.
Alan Shearer might suggest that Rooney “sticks one on” Ronaldo when he returns to Manchester. Please Alan,, don’t be silly..
. Shoestring Chronicle