The Spirit of Cricket
The current Laws of Cricket is headed by the following:
THE PREAMBLE – THE SPIRIT OF CRICKET
Cricket is a game that owes much of its unique appeal to the fact that it should be played not only within its Laws but also within the Spirit of the Game. Any action which is seen to abuse this spirit causes injury to the game itself. The major responsibility for ensuring the spirit of fair play rests with the captains*.
* In junior cricket the responsibility must rest mainly with managers.
We feel there is a need to emphasise to players, managers and spectators alike the need to uphold the traditions of good behaviour and sportsmanship in our cricket. The onus of responsibility must lie with club officials to ensure that a traditional level of sportsmanship is maintained for the benefit of junior cricket.
The following is a brief guide to the good behaviour we expect:
- Opponents should be treated with courtesy and respect; applaud their good play as well as that of your own team.
- You will want to encourage your bowlers but keep this within reasonable bounds, there is no need for continual shouting and clapping.
- Only fielders in a good position to see what happened should appeal. It can be counter productive to keep appealing.
- Do not show dissent or question an umpire’s decision.
- Never make offensive comments or gestures to an opponent. When you have dismissed a batsman there is no need to send him on his way with gestures and comments.
- Celebrate your successes by all means but do not be excessive.
- Umpires and scorers appreciate a word of thanks at the end of a game. Captains, in particular, should make a point of doing this after every match.
- Managers should set an example to the players by their own behaviour. We do not want a “win at all costs” attitude. No-one should shout at players on the field of play. We do not want cricket to become like some other games.
- Spectators should support their team without interfering. Support the officials, be they umpires, scorers, managers or coaches. These people give up their time voluntarily.
- Instructions must not be given to players; the manager is there to do that at the appropriate time.
- Comments should not be made about umpires or their decisions and derogatory comments should not be voiced about opponents.