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Ian Chappell: What he said, really meant and definitely didn’t

English: Image of Australian cricketer Ian Cha...

English: Image of Australian cricketer Ian Chappell. Courtesy of the National Archive of Australia. The NAA has given permission for the image to be used under the GDFL license. Confirmation of this permission has been sent to the OTRS system. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ian Chappell raises his index finger to doctored pitches and biased adjudicating.

What he said:

“The players need to be careful where tit-for-tat pitch preparation might lead.'”

Ian Chappell is not keen on cricketers’ insistence on having wickets that suit them in home series. The former Australian skipper was responding to Shane Watson’s desire for bouncy pitches in the upcoming series against India.

Shane Watson

Shane Watson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Watson said:

“We are hopeful that the groundsmen are going to make the grounds very conducive to what we do, because in India they certainly make sure the conditions are favourable to them.”

Chappell, writing in his column, commented:

“I was reminded of two things when I read that quote. The first was a story told by Tony Greig about playing first-class cricket in South Africa.

It was at a time when umpires were appointed by the local association and the standard had dipped alarmingly. Greig described how the Western Province players would tell their local umpires to ‘send off’ the Transvaal batsmen because that was the treatment they received when playing in Johannesburg. In the end the situation became so dire the players declared a moratorium and agreed to ‘walk’ when they knew they were out.

That situation didn’t last long and soon chaos reigned.

The other was a comment concerning players who decide an umpire is either weak or incompetent and the team agrees to ‘appeal for everything’. Those teams are often the first to complain when the umpiring in a match is below standard. Hence the often-heard and eminently true comment: ‘Beware you don’t get the umpiring you deserve.’

The same could apply to pitches if players are going to start demanding retribution from the home curators.”

Chappell added:

“I’d go one step further and say that as captain, if I’d asked any Australian curator for a certain type of pitch, the answer would have been: ‘Get stuffed. I’ll prepare the pitch, you play on it.'”

What he really meant:

“Tit-for-tat reactions will create a dysfunctional relationship and ruin the ethos of the sport. It also breeds one-dimensional cricketers who cannot adapt to different situations and conditions. It’s  not going to produce great cricketers, but home-grown bully boys.”

What he definitely didn’t:

“How about a tit for two tats instead? Also, you ought to keep in mind that if Team India fold in three days or less, Cricket Australia will lose out on all that gate money and television revenue.”


I have been an IT professional with over 12 years professional experience. I'm an B.Sc. in Statistics, M.Sc in Computer Science (University of Mumbai) and an MBA from the Cyprus International Institute of Management. I have completed levels I and II of the CFA course. Blogging is a part-time vocation. I am also the author of four books, Those Glory Days: Cricket World Cup 2011, IPL Vignettes, Poems: An Anthology, and It's a Petting Sport---all available on Amazon Worldwide.


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