Mar 2 2014
by Kevin Keys
Behind the bowler’s arm
As the facing batter, do not allow yourself to be distracted by any object (or person) that is behind, or passing behind, the bowler’s arm. You are quite entitled to ask the bowler’s end umpire for the offending object to be removed. Examples would include glare reflecting off a car windscreen or a spectator standing directly in your line of sight.
Averages and Aggregates
Never let your wish for a high average or large aggregate get in the way of your team goals. There is nothing to admire in the exploits of a batter who has made a slow 50 at the top of the order in a limited over game when the bulk of the batsmen haven’t had a bat.
Eventually you will get out. When it happens, be a “good sport” and take it well. If the umpire’s finger is up, there is nothing you can do about it as there is no decision review system in your grades of cricket. Walk briskly off the field without any show of bad temper or dissent towards an umpire’s decision. When you return to your team-mates do not sulk, grizzle, or throw your bat or protective gear. After removing your gear and having a drink, return to your team-mates and show your support to those waiting for their turn to bat.
Finally, reflect thoroughly on your innings and your method of dismissal. What did you do well, what was not so good? From every innings you should learn something. From every mistake you make you should learn something. The lessons learned will be stored in your long-term memory bank, ready to be applied in future innings, so that you will hopefully not repeat the same mistakes.
Reacting to a bad umpiring decision
The umpire’s decision is final and must not be criticised, either by word or by body language. An angry or surprised look implies a criticism of the umpire, and must never happen. When you return to your team mates, resist the temptation, no matter how hard it may be, to make negative comments on the umpire’s decision.
If you are fortunate to make 50, or even better, 100, make sure you acknowledge the applause by raising your bat towards the spectators and your team-mates. On your return to your team at the end of your innings, again acknowledge the applause, even if disappointed with the manner of your dismissal. A grim facial expression and lack of acknowledgement is ungrateful and bad mannered and may lead to a stern talking to from your coach. If your parents are present, they are likely to be embarrassed by your poor behaviour.