To walk or not to walk
Crickets Ethical Dilemma
Do you recall the moment when Englishman Stuart Broad hit the ragged leather red ball off the middle of the willow and it raced to Michael Clarke in first slip? The Aussies with their tail up during the 5-0 whitewash against England in 2013, appealing, screaming, so already celebrating over the inevitable wicket of England’s pantomime villain Stuart Broad. Out of disbelief umpire declares the decision not out, and Stuart did not walk, and worst of all Australia have no reviews left. This begs the question is the review system being used effectively? But that is for another time.
But on the other end of scale remember Adam Gilchrist always walked even if it was one of the finest edges in cricket history...he would still walk. So who would you be the honest in defeat Gilchrist or the devious and the more modern cricketer who does not walk until the dreaded figure points to the sky?
I see this as cricket’s most ethical dilemma. I believe in the spirit of cricket and therefore I will walk if I am caught behind, but I will only walk if it is a convincing appeal. As a batsman I feel that if the bowler gets me out then I will respect that the ball they produced was a good one.
Just imagine...sun beating down on your back, tired feet, tired knees and an exhausted head. Bowling on a road, no cloud cover no swing, no grass, no seam movement and pitch not worn down enough for spin. Both openers past fifty and are going strong and looks like they will never take the lonely walk back to the pavilion till the innings is done and dusted. Slips lining up for the next ball aching backs, bowler trying to give every ounce of energy to this ball to take that long waited wicket and the batsman eyeing up a big score. The ball is out of the bowler’s hand the red duke hits the pitch hard and suddenly...seam movement. Batsman already thinking about the magical extra cover drive to take the ball trickling over the boundary rope...reckless shot...the edge is found. First slip catches the ball at waist height. Players screaming, appealing in desperation knowing that they have a wicket, umpire remains as still as a statue and so does the batsman.
How would you feel?