Social commentary, Sport

Pure Class: Flintoff’s challenge to cricket’s elitism

The issue of class is woven into the history of cricket like no other sport.  As a non-contact game, it was more socially acceptable for the English upper classes to play alongside the working class.  It was a shared sporting endeavour but without the potentially awkward physicality of rugby or football. Thus cricket helped forge… Continue reading Pure Class: Flintoff’s challenge to cricket’s elitism

Sport

Transforming leadership: the power of a fresh approach

New England Captain, Ben Stokes and new Coach, Brendan McCullum Just a few weeks ago, English Cricket was in deep crisis. The team had only won one Test match in 17 games. The team was thrashed by Australia last winter and beaten by the West Indies in the spring. The Director and Coach were sacked… Continue reading Transforming leadership: the power of a fresh approach

Sport

Shane Warne: why he meant so much, to so many – by David Hilborn

Why am I reading every eulogy, every obituary, every retrospective of Shane Warne that I can lay my hands on following his shock death yesterday aged just 52? And why, periodically, are those tributes prompting my throat to catch, and my eyes to brim with tears? After all, Ukraine is burning. The world is reeling… Continue reading Shane Warne: why he meant so much, to so many – by David Hilborn

Ethics & Christian living, Sport

3 lessons for the Church from the Yorkshire Cricket racism scandal

Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC) is one of the most famous sporting institutions in the world. They have won the County Championship a record 33 times and have produced cricketing legends such as Sir Len Hutton, Fred Trueman, Geoffrey Boycott and the current England captain, Joe Root. Stubborn But even within cricket’s conservative culture, YCCC… Continue reading 3 lessons for the Church from the Yorkshire Cricket racism scandal

Sport

‘A slur which insults and wounds’: racism is not banter

Azeem Rafiq's father at Yorkshire CCC yesterday I am a member of a Facebook group for cricket fans. Over the last few days, there has inevitably been a lot of discussion, some of it very heated, about the racist bullying that Azeem Rafiq has faced at Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC). If you are not… Continue reading ‘A slur which insults and wounds’: racism is not banter

Sport

Greed which consumes itself: lessons from Chaucer for the European Super League

Geoffrey Chaucer was a 14th century English poet and author, best known for The Canterbury Tales. These collection of stories are told by a motley crew of fictional characters on a pilgrimage from London to Canterbury. My favourite one is The Pardoner’s Tale. The Pardoner is a malevolent and hypocritical character. He swindles poor people… Continue reading Greed which consumes itself: lessons from Chaucer for the European Super League

Recommended books & reviews, Sport, Theology

‘David Sheppard: Batting for the Poor’ – by Andrew Bradstock [review]

David Sheppard scored more runs in a single season and more centuries than anyone else in the history of Cambridge University cricket.  Such was his talent that he was selected for England’s 1950/51 Ashes tour of Australia at the end of his first year as a student. But, at the same time his sporting career… Continue reading ‘David Sheppard: Batting for the Poor’ – by Andrew Bradstock [review]

Films & music, Sport

Ability, vulnerability and mental health: ‘The Edge’ [review]

This week it was World Mental Health Day. I was struck by the number of men I know posting on social media about their struggles with their mental well-being. Even just a few years ago, I doubt people would have been so open. And this weekend, I watched the film The Edge which is a documentary… Continue reading Ability, vulnerability and mental health: ‘The Edge’ [review]

Poverty, Sport

The poverty that creates knife crime

My community in south London lives in the shadow of knife crime.  Young people have been killed on our street and the threat of violence continually affects the young people we know and care about. As a father of three children, including two teenage boys, I am more anxious than ever about their safety. Like… Continue reading The poverty that creates knife crime