Spirit on display a big boon
ON Sunday morning, March 25, a nation awoke ashamed.
Those sandpaper scars run deep and will take time to heal, but six-and-a-half months later Australian cricket followers rediscovered what it’s like to wake up again with pride.
It wasn’t the ball-tampering act in itself that was the real issue in South Africa, but the lasting damage Australia’s arrogant actions and attitude had done to the country’s rich sporting fabric of always striving to play hard but fair.
On a deteriorating day-five pitch in Dubai, a new-look Australian team proved over the course of 140 overs in the blazing desert sun that the culture of the baggy green is something worth fighting for.
The fact that Australia lost 10-60 in the first innings showed that a greenhorn team missing David Warner and Steve Smith is vulnerable.
But after his captain’s knock against Pakistan to secure Australia one of Test cricket’s great escapes, Tim Paine declared the foundations have now been set for a new era.
“That’s exactly the brand of cricket we want to play,” Paine said. “We know that to become a good team we first have to be hard to beat.”