My corner of the oval

… thoughts from a Kiwi cricket fan

Our instant lifestyle comes back to hurt us

on January 13, 2013

I guess we shouldn’t really be surprised as our New Zealand cricketers crash to another horrid score in the second test match against South Africa in Port Elizabeth over the weekend …

instant coffee I mean, our lives are centred around wanting everything immediately these days … whether it be instantly feeding our caffeine addiction rather than waiting for the plunger to brew or the barista-made cup to be ready … our need to eat quickly using a microwave to heat our food, rather than taking the time to carefully and considerately plan out a menu, gather the ingredients and spend the time putting together a nutritious meal for ourselves and our friends … our need to instantly connect with our friends and family around the world via text messages or social networking, instead of sitting patiently by the mail box, just waiting for that much-anticipated letter to arrive …

(Even as I write this blog post, I proved my own point by signing into my “instant” messaging application on my computer and immediately being able to talk to a friend on the other side of the world, without any effort at all!)

 … and our need to watch an entire game of cricket, and get a result in the space of an afternoon, so that we can go away and get on with the rest of our lives, and all those other important things that we can’t wait to do!
As I watched the first session of the second test match on my TV screen … with images screened to me via satellites so that I could get the action from the game live and at the same time as it was happening … I found myself marvelling as Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis strode out to the middle of the field, and each set about defending stoically and deliberately each delivery that was bowled down the pitch to them, not seeming to care or mind that it had taken them half an hour to score a mere 11 runs …
And I watched the other end of the pitch as the likes of Trent Boult and Doug Bracewell, disciplined themselves to bowling the right line and length of delivery so that the batsmen couldn’t score runs freely … and wondering to myself just who was going to crack first, and hoping it wasn’t the New Zealanders …
I almost sighed out loud as eventually the short-pitched, easy-paced delivery came and the world-class batsman at the other end of the pitch was able to easily switch his mindset from defence to attack and score a boundary 4 and ease the run-scoring pressure off himself and his team!
Photo courtesy of www.cricinfo.com

Photo courtesy of http://www.cricinfo.com

And I woke up this morning to check the New Zealand batting scorecard … feeling distressed to see scores such as 1, 13, 4, 10, 0 and 15 from our “top” batsmen 😦
And then I look down the  “minutes” column, which indicates the amount of time the batsman spent at the batting crease to score his runs, and the news doesn’t get much better … 12, 8, 41 and 10!  Brendon McCullum at least managed an hour and a half for his 13 runs (97 minutes to be precise) but without having seen the batting innings myself, I would hazard a guess a lot of those 61 balls faced from the South African bowlers weren’t met with a defensive bat 😦
Scorecard for New ZEaland v South Africa, second test, Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Now don’t get me wrong – I love all formats of cricket, and will steadfastly support my national and local teams in their quests for various tournament wins – I just feel like we have “trained” our players to have an instant entertainment mentality in all varieties of the game, instead of being able to appreciate waiting for the joy, for example, of a test match century, achieved through determination, discipline and defence:
The joy of a test century!(Photo courtesy of www.cricinfo.com)

The joy of a test century!
(Photo courtesy of http://www.cricinfo.com)

The administrators for our game in New Zealand, along with the media, and some fans, have told our players that we just want them to go out onto the park and entertain the crowds for a few hours and that’ll do … they don’t bother telling the players that actually the fans will appreciate them a whole lot more if they take two days to grind out 100 runs for their country, or cause the opposition batsmen to take two or three days to bat through their test match innings because they are bowling so tightly that runs are harder to be scored … for some reason, they believe we love our “instant lifestyles” so much that we want our cricket to be instant as well.  Unfortunately, the only Instant Cricket I have found is a gambling website that allows where users to play 5, 10, 20 or 50 over games instantly and win cash!
I may want an instant lifestyle but I still appreciate waiting and being patient for things, because most of the time, the things that take time are the things that are worth the most!  And I, for one, want long-life (and patient) cricketers!
Determination, discipline and defence – sounds like a good slogan, really, doesn’t it?!  😉
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2 responses to “Our instant lifestyle comes back to hurt us

  1. callindobhair says:

    Maybe we’re just getting used to life in the fast lane, everything is getting so fast paced now. Your ancestors when they moved from here to New Zealand probalby moved by boat taking about 6 weeks and yet when you visited here you flew and got here in a matter of hours…. 😉

    Maybe its about getting things quicker but better

    • Jess says:

      Sadly, in this case, test cricket is not supposed to be about getting quicker to be better … it was always supposed to be the ultimate cricketing “test,” to prove the players’ skills over a longer period of time … I just wish our players wanted to “prove” themselves more 😦

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