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End excuses and hold individuals to account

Poor example: Action from the Eastern Counties game on Saturday between Bailey’s Bay and Cleveland at Lord’s, St David’s, which was marred by bad behaviour

Dear Sir,

I listened to the game on Saturday and read the articles in Monday’s Gazette. How shameful is the behaviour and how embarrassed will the families, clubs, Eastern Counties and future generations be if a swift disciplinary response is not forthcoming.

As a former player for Cleveland County Cricket Club (CCCC), I cannot ever recall a time when dissension was shown after the umpire had rendered his decision.

If you were given out, you were taught to walk back to the pavilion with your head high, regardless of what you thought or how you felt.

If you were bowling and a decision did not go in your favour, you were taught to go back to your mark and keep bowling.

I have to ask what is being taught? When males between the ages of 22 and 35 have to be disciplined like teenagers, we have serious challenges now and possibly later because the teens are watching.

I hope the officials will be swift and decisive so the decisions will be a deterrent to any future negative behaviour.

The public will be well aware that one player in the centre of the controversy was at the centre of negative behaviour at a recent Cup Match. It would appear there has been no successful rehabilitation and he continues to play. If we don’t learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.

We must stop making excuses and hold individuals accountable for their actions. We try to teach players to build an innings, but we need to build character as well. After all, this game (and that’s all it is) is called “the gentleman’s game”.

To the officials of the clubs and the Eastern Counties governing body, tighten up the policies of club and county and be bold in enforcing them. Keep this as a family outing; there aren’t too many left.

Lover of the game and community