What is it that prevents me from ever warming to the likes of cricketing “legend” Shane Warne? I could make a short list of sporting “legends” I disdained, together with a Beatles/Greek chorus: Maradona (cheat); Lance Armstrong (cheat, cheat); Michael Schumacker (cheat); Shane Warne… etc.
I’ve never subscribed to the idea that you set such things aside when people die, young or otherwise.
I mean, what is it, aside from the involvement in dodgy betting schemes, the occasional prohibited substance, and the ever-present sledging and gamesmanship? The man was a cad, I tell you, an absolute cad! I mean, was it “spin” that did for so many batsmen, or was it the deliberately scuffed pitch or the deliberately scuffed ball, or any number of other violations?
My dislike of the cad, the rogue, the bounder extends into politics, of course. The Americans recently elected a President who notoriously cheats at golf. I appear to be in the minority on objecting to rogues, as so many of my fellow British citizens voted for Boris Johnson precisely because he was a serial liar/adulterer in the guise of a toddler-haired clown, and he appears to have survived his recent brush with public opprobrium thanks to a certain invasion (launched by another absolute cad).
You feel like a mug, of course, as you wobble along in life, surrounded by people with malleable consciences who get ahead by embellishing their CVs, burying the bad news, and generally scuffing the pitch of life.
These days, my inherent honestly has turned to a certain bluntness on certain subjects, and it is of course ironic how offended people are as a result, when they appear to be fine with actual cheating.
Everything about the modern game of cricket, as exemplified by Warne, is fucking horrible. The coloured pyjamas, the sponsors, the floodlights, the white balls, the presence of microphones everywhere, the cheating, the betting. It all started with Tony Greig, of course, but the process was accelerated in the Warne era and I have never been okay with it. Absolute cads!