Cricket – an unholy squall over a ball

Cricket – a bat-and-ball game played between two teams – is to the uninitiated a leisurely amble across well-cut grass where gentlemen play for the enjoyment of playing and the win is of secondary importance. Except when it turns into a culture clash between nations. There has been outrage over some obscure misdemeanour by the Australian team in the UK for the Ashes, who have been condemned for going against the spirit of the game by their overly competitive approach. Cries of ‘cheat, cheat, cheat’ regaled the Aussies as they walked through the pavilion. One Australian newspaper responded by dressing England captain Ben Stokes up in a nappy and declaring that the “Poms take whingeing to a new level with ‘cheating’ drivel”.

 The Aussie captain Pat Cummins is being blamed for his out-to-win approach. Born 8 May 1993, he is a tough Sun Taurus opposition Pluto with his Pluto square Saturn in Aquarius so he’s no pussy cat. His Fixed planets do collide with the UK’s 8th house Mars and sporting 5th house Venus in Aquarius so he was bound to ruffle a few feathers. He also has a sporting Sagittarius Moon and Mars in flamboyant Leo.

  He does fit more comfortably with the Australian chart and ethos with his Sun conjunct the AU Taurus Moon and his Sag Moon conjunct the AU Venus, Uranus, Jupiter; and his Jupiter in Libra opposition Venus square the AU Sun.

  The relationship chart between Australia and the UK has a competitive, argumentative composite Sun Venus opposition Mars square Jupiter – a high-octane mix of (sometimes) friendly rivalry and oneupmanship jousting. Plus a chained together (and resenting it) Pluto opposition Saturn. And an evasive Sun trine Neptune.

  Even the respective Prime Ministers – Sunak and Albanese  – waded in with opposing takes on the huffing hurricane.

 Sydney’s Daily Telegraph, devoted its front page to the row with the headline: “Our message to the hypocritical, sanctimonious, whinging poms who can’t accept they were beaten fair and square . . . “We’re 2 up, baby!”

Over two pages inside, headlined “The poms always bleating”, the newspaper’s cricket writer, Dean Ritchie said: “The protesting poms can have a two-finger salute — which could also double as the series score. That’s right, it’s two-nil.”

15 thoughts on “Cricket – an unholy squall over a ball

  1. I have always found cricket deadly dull and even fell asleep when my husband attempted to explain the rules to me.

    So it has been quite enlivening reading the previous posts, and very enjoyable. But have you made me a convert, probably not..

    • I think the operative word with the Ashes Test series is the word “test”. It’s a game played over 5 days and requires a test of skills, tactics, strategies, endurance, patience and mental toughness. There’s a lot of mind games. The players who succeed are often the ones who can shut out the surrounding noise which is immense and focus on each play always believing they can succeed even when the odds are seemingly against them. A cohesive team is vital for success which is pretty much required in every team sport.

      I have watched many test series over the years and there is always drama of some description.

      Astrologically I wonder if a team’s chart has more influence than an individual’s regarding results?

  2. There are lots of details rules never cover in a sport and in any walk of life, people who want to win at all costs will always find the exploit.

    There is a fine line between innovation and overstepping the mark. The Australian cricketers for example are famous for “sledging” i.e. verbal abuse. While it’s generally considered okay to comment on a player’s ability (i.e. remind them of a dropped catch), it can tip over into personal lives (i.e. wives, girlfriends). In recent years, it has come under scrutiny just as bullying in the workplace has.

    This is the whole area of ethics and morality which are Sag/9th house areas. The Australian national chart has a bunch of Sag / 9th house planets so always pushing the boundaries (no pun intended). Uranus is in there for innovation. And they also have Gemini in Pluto* – a sign that archetypally has no morals which is why they need to learn them from Sag.

    * Perfect for sledging – verbally getting under the skin

    • I actually have sympathy with both teams in this matter. Law 20 of Cricket governing when a ball is dead is not straightforward . The ball is deemed dead when the ball is “finally settled in the bowler or wicket keepers hands” or when the umpire decides both sides have ceased to regard it as in play. However, law (20.4.1) is only states that the umpire “may” signal the ball is dead. Most of the time between deliveries he does not. This leaves the question of whether the ball is in play ambiguous as there is no way of knowing whether the sides have agreed in the fact and the umpire has made no definite statement on its status. This is a recipe for confusion and conflict.
      Surely, the laws should require the umpire to make that decision in all circumstances so both sides are never in doubt about its status. At least in that circumstance both sides would know to “play to the whistle” in football terms. As with the underarm bowling controversy the Australians may have done the game a favour by highlighting yet another poorly drafted law of the game.

      • I assume the law is written like that because making the umpire signal the ball dead 450+ times per day was considered tedious overkill for something that traditionally has never been an issue in 150yrs of play at all the levels of play.

        I agree that you can put forward a case for both teams. Ethics is never clearcut and rules/laws are born from Capricorn solidifying what is learned by Sag.

  3. I had a look at the chart for the underarm bowling controversy involving Australia and New Zealand on 1st February 1981 Melbourne Australia which occurred when Neptune was at 24 Sagittarius conjunct a Moon somewhere between 25-28 Sagittarius and Sextile Mars at 25 Aquarius. Interestingly the Bairstow stumping shortly before 1.00 PM at Lords on 2nd July 2023 had the Moon at 26 Sagittarius square retrograde Neptune at 27 Pisces trine Mars at 24 Leo. This indicates common themes in the astrological charts. Neptune highlights the sometimes rather nebulous cricket laws. The Moon shows potential emotional triggers and the Mars aspects would certainly let the anger flow over both incidents

  4. Hi Marjorie,

    What does Ben Stokes chart say? He’s a player of this new ‘Bazball’ approach by England, pioneered by thier coach Brendon McCullum. I have to say I’ve been gripped by this Ashes series as there has been repeated drama throught the first 2 tests, and that takes some doing as I live in the US and have to get up at 5am to watch it.

  5. You need skill ability and talent to play sport , it isnt just a ball . Maybe thats why people get angry with umpires

    • Probably so as Scotland and Ireland have their own teams. But Wales don’t and while it is referred to as the England team, they are sorted out by the England and Wales Cricket Board.

  6. Bairstow should have stayed in his ground. That said the laws of cricket should put the onus on the umpire to declare the ball dead. It is not exactly the first time the Australia have been caught up bending crickets laws with the Chappell brothers underarm increasingly dent against New Zealand being probably the most famous. And needless to say the Australians were not slow in protesting about body line or leg theory in the 1930s even though it was perfectly legal under the laws of cricket at the time.

  7. What has appeared in many articles about this incident is that what occurred was “against the spirit of the game” which is an ill-defined concept that seems to appear when one team is unhappy with a certain outcome. There have been many instances in Ashes series over decades where other incidences have occurred that have resulted in spectators and opposing teams being extremely upset. This particular incident that has caused such a massive debate between two sporting-passionate countries was within the rules of the game and the final decision for the outcome was made by an umpire, not a team. I read that the rules of cricket were designed by the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC). Perhaps it’s time to revisit the rules and make changes? I think Marjorie’s description of the astrological rivalry between the two countries explains why there has been so many heated articles and televised debates about it. How the members in the Long Room behaved towards the Australian team is a whole other discussion.

  8. The often times unseemly sporting competitiveness between New Zealand- Aotearoa and it’s big neighbour across ‘the ditch’ has little connection to sportsmanship.

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