There is no doubt that many cricket fans around the world irrespective as to whether they support Australia or not have been disappointed at the antics of England fast bowler Stuart Broad in the Ashes series. However Australia coach Darren Lehmann’s comments on Triple M were foolish, and could well come back to haunt him.
Broad angered the Australian team and cricket fans around the world when in the nail biting first test at Trent Bridge after blatantly nicking the ball to first slip he failed to walk and give himself out. However it should be remembered that Australian Brad Haddin also failed to walk when he admitted after the game that he had nicked the ball to Matt Prior, to be the last man out and hand England a 14-run victory. To be fair his edge was not quite as obvious, but as they say what’s good for the goose…
Broad then deliberately tried to waste time when bowling on the final day of that same test match.
Lehmann commented how the Australian team have not forgotten these acts and that Broad is enemy number one. He went on to say “From my point of view I just hope the Australian public give it to him right from the word go for the whole summer and I hope he cries and he goes home. I just hope everyone gets stuck into him because the way he’s carried on and the way he’s commented in public about it is ridiculous.”
It is one thing to think such a thing, another to almost try and whip Australian cricket fans into a frenzy to target an individual. This is foolish and Lehmann is now as guilty as Broad of behaviour unbefitting the game of cricket.
It will be interesting, should some drunken fan decide to take matters into his own hands and try and teach Mr Broad what it feels like ‘to get a tickle,’ whether Lehmann’s comments are looked at more closely and whether he is deemed to have stirred up the ill feeling to reach such a point.
Sometimes it is better to let actions speak louder than words, and the place to bring Broad back down to size is on the pitch. Lehmann is no doubt frustrated that it has taken until the fifth and final test for his charges to come close to do doing that and that may be the reason for his ill-advised comments.