The Courier-Mail

WAGS weren’t out on pitch losing the Ashes

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I READ that the WAGS (wives and girlfriend­s) have been blamed, at least in part, for the drop in form of the Australian cricket team during their Ashes tour of England ( C-M, Aug 10).

I don’t know what blame, if any, one can apportion to the partners of the Australian cricket team.

After all, the WAGS (pictured) are not out there batting, bowling and fielding.

I would put the loss of form down to the English conditions, a lack of proper preparatio­n and probably a few too many “senior” members in the starting eleven.

I have often wondered if there are HABS (husbands and boyfriends) of female Australian sporting teams. If they do exist, the HABS seem to keep a much lower profile.

In any event, I think that WAGS (and HABS, if they exist) are a good idea and a step forward for internatio­nal sportspeop­le who would otherwise be faced with the prospect of spending extended periods away from their “significan­t other”. Laurie Parker, Charlevill­e JUST when we thought we had sorted out the politician­s and their partners for taking advantage of their spouse travel entitlemen­t, we now learn that the wife of outgoing Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke does not get along with the wife of another senior player on the team.

The atmosphere became so toxic that Clarke did not bond with his teammates off-field and travelled separately from the team when they were on the road.

We all know how awkward it can be if our partner does not get along with a friend or his/her partner.

No wonder the Australian team performed so poorly in the Ashes.

I suspect, like our politician­s and their families who travel with them with financial assistance from the government, cricketers’ families travel with their husbands with financial assistance from Cricket Australia.

Perhaps it is time to rethink if wives should accompany their husbands on tour.

Then their husbands can focus on winning matches, not worrying about bickering between their wives.

I would also question the coaching staff for not picking up on the off-field drama. Peter Pak, Rochedale South SHAME on your front-page headline “From loner to loser” ( C-M, Aug 10).

How much better and representa­tive of Michael Clarke’s true contributi­on to Australian sport would a positive headline have been?

No thought about the impact on the man, who like all of us, is far from perfect but who, unlike most of us, has achieved at the highest level. Glenda Maddern, Bardon

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