Tuesday 24 April 2018

Ireland's heroics put cricket's ring-fencing to shame

Ireland cricket captain William Porterfield
Ireland cricket captain William Porterfield

Michael McCarthy

Ireland's wins over Pakistan and England in the last two Cricket World Cups were considered, rightly, as among the greatest achievements in Irish sport.

Last Monday, there was nowhere near the same fanfare for the win over the West Indies, and that's the best thing about it.

Watching the final runs, there were no whoops, no hollers, no celebratory laps of the sitting room. I fully expected them to do it.

The players expected it too. They didn't go crazy in celebration. Instead they used the attention to criticise cricket's world governing body, the ICC.

Captain Ian Porterfield said in the post-match press conference: "I personally hate the terms upset, minnows, Associates - I don't see why a team has to be an Associate or a Full Member, surely you are just ranked one to whatever? It's not like that in any other sport, so I don't see why it is in ours."

Cricket's attitude is bizarre. Instead of trying to grow the game worldwide, it enforces the pre-existing gulf.

Monday wasn't a shock. It was just treated as such because of cricket's determination to keep the game as insular as possible.

Irish Independent

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