Congratulations to Steve Smith who has taken over the “Glen McGrath” professorship for the public understanding of Australian hubris. To be fair to McGrath, a man with over 500 test wickets, and integral member of one of the greatest sides of all time, he could be forgiven for thinking his side might whitewash England, although saying it aloud is insulting and isn’t a part of the spirit of respect in which cricket should be said. Steve Smith however, a man who was pathetic the last time he visited England and pathetic again in the current series (if we exclude his excellent double hundred which was made on a flat nothing pitch at lord’s).
If you haven’t seen Steve’s pre-Ashes predictions, here’s the video for you to enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90y8CPjE1a8
England have won 5 of the last 7 Ashes series, and all 4 home series since 2005 (and that against a vastly superior Australian side to the current line-up). In that context, no matter how good your current form, you will always look like an arrogant berk for shouting your mouth off, especially if you are yet to make any kind off impression in the conditions in which the series will be played.
This kind of rude unsporting “public sledging” is why here in England we so love to see Australia lose. Not just lose to England, but lose to anyone. Once upon a time the West Indies were dominant, but their decline quickly brought sympathy and a hope that they will soon return to being truly competitive at the top level. The Australians can expect no such sympathy until they show a greater respect for others.
So — Steve Smith — here’s hoping you learn from this low point of your career, and as the Australia captain in waiting, show a new attitude from Australian cricket more in keeping with the spirit of the game. If you need any advice just pop across the water and pay a visit to Brendan McCullum who will no doubt be delighted to show you how it is done.
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