The shenanigans of the the past few days have served to mask a greater crime on the state of our treasured cricket traditions.
Not a failure to win – but a failure to appropriately represent the baggy green and all those who have gone before – fans and players.
We now know, because Arthur and Howard have said so, that misdemeanours have been frequent, repeated and involve far more than the four dissidents who have been penalised in an excessive and unbalanced way.
Oh, and no quiet word or last chance deadline either. Arthur is not stupid – this was a planned opportunity for him. Why?
Here the stories diverge.
It is a fact that Cricket Australia has an institutionalised disregard and arrogance towards the keener fan-base of their team(s) – dismissing their views is the managements’ daily dirty little pleasure.
However an unprecedented fan-based outpouring on all aspects of these events has resulted in such a public platform it cannot be contained. The old saying ‘be careful what you wish for’ springs to mind.
One thing is clear – the management themselves have confirmed they lost control of their responsibility to develop required culture, and confirmed an absence of respect.
This is a clear cut admission of failure to achieve tasks they are paid for.
Pat Howard added to his sentence by going to the press with his Watson innuendo before Watson even landed.
Mickey Arthur (great elsewhere) and Howard (great nowhere) have to go, along with Inverarity.
But this is not management’s only misdemeanour – nor is it an isolated event .
Have we learnt nothing about India?
This series has been in the diary for years – inconveniently, I agree, before two Ashes series which are very different contests.
But you would think it was an afterthought based on Cricket Australia management’s all round performance .
Did no one look at what happened to England (then #1) a few months ago?
Thrashed from the first ball – bamboozled by three relentless spinners and close fields, and defeated before the start of play by picking only one spinner.
The only place for the seamers was the after match physios.
Amazingly this is the exact formula that our lemming management chose, with the same result.
Management had years to prepare for this – their failure is on three levels – development, selection and preparation.
All these tasks were grossly under-performed or not performed at all.
It is unacceptable that not one apinner has been developed for potential Test selection who can turn the ball both ways. What are our academies for?
It is at least negligent to have not recognised that this was required for an Indian Tour .
Both two southern pitches are famously clay pans – our batsmen should have been practising on clay pans for months and against 100s of overs by spinners supported by close fielders.
In what sport would you not practice for the conditions you know you will get?
What were they doing? You have to conclude the India Tour was not respected.
Why would Hughes’ manager need to complain about denial of specific preparation? If he had been subjected to a planned clay pan prep he may have learned to play technically closer to his body – or indeed not get selected at all for not adjusting.
Poor Michael Clarke – the last man standing.
His effort was like Ian Poulter in the Ryder Cup who carried the European team up the hill on his shoulders.
He has failed to get them over the hill because his management delivered a poorly selected and underprepared team around him.
It is too late to address the preparation and selection for the tour. It is a crime not to maximise the possibility for this third Test.
This week’s events are tantamount to accepting the series is over.
England came back in the last two Tests, where a higher bounce gave their spinners an edge. They won.
Our team for third Test is definitely worse than it could have been.
Is Smith really the only ripping spinner we can produce?
With some respect I say Maxwell, Henriques and Smith are not Test standard and we may bat both Wade and Haddin, if Wade is fit.
Oh, did anyone notice that Johnson got a devastating 5-fer at Mohali last time around and Watson smashed a century?
The 4th Test in Delhi is only relevant if we win the third – if we do those players will be maintained – if we don’t changes will matter little.
What the management has done is an insult to the Baggy Green cap.
The Ashes will soon send this into the mist – the present management should not be the ones guiding our culture and commitment and preparation.
Respect has always to be earned – if not then heavy handed lessons rarely work with adult Aussie testoronic males.
Michael Clarke should be deselected as a selector and do what he is best at – captaining and performing on the field.