Observing the spirit of cricket

Friendship – Humility – Pride – Resilience

As a large club with many teams, covering a huge range of abilities and ages, we are justly proud of our achievements: our promotion back into the East Anglian Premier League, and our triumph in the Under 12 Brian Taylor Cup, are just two examples from 2018.

But cricket is famously not just about winning. We are a community of players, volunteers, parents and supporters, drawn from all walks of life, and we work to ensure that cricket is open to all and enjoyable for all.

We have a Code of Conduct, built upon our understanding of the Spirit of Cricket, which sets out the standards of behaviour which we expect on and off the pitch, not only from players but from all involved in the Club. Following this code protects the reputation of the Club and the safety and wellbeing of all its members, especially children. We urge you all to read the code HERE and ask parents to explain its meaning to their children too.

In drawing up a set of values for the Club, our senior players identified Friendship, Humility, Pride and Resilience as key to the behaviours they wanted to aspire to and be recognised for. We believe that competitiveness goes hand in hand with friendship, both within and outside the club. While we celebrate success, we always know we could do more and that others’ successes should be celebrated too. We take pride in the Crocus: our players, our grounds, our community, our standards. We take defeats in our stride, do not challenge umpires, and approach every game as a new opportunity. Adhering to the Code of Conduct and following the Spirit of Cricket helps us to do all this.

For younger players in particular, it is sometimes hard not to see being bowled out or a team defeat as a personal loss, and high batting or bowling scores as the main aim. Cricket is also about being part of a team, supporting each other, and showing respect for others. The Club wants to recognise Academy members who demonstrate the Spirit of Cricket in their behaviours, as well as those who help to win games. We are therefore very pleased to announce a new award this summer: the Steve Jones Spirit of Cricket Award. Steve was a Vice President and keen supporter of the Club for many years, and the award is given in his memory. It is there to recognise the Academy member, of any age, gender or ability, who is considered to have shown the behaviours of sportsmanship, respect, encouragement and responsibility each year, and will be presented for the first time at the end of the 2019 Season.

The  Spirit of Cricket

Cricket is a game that owes much of its unique appeal to the fact that it should be played not only within its Laws but also within the Spirit of the Game. Any action which is seen to abuse this spirit causes injury to the game itself. The major responsibility for ensuring the spirit of fair play rests with the captains.

1. There are two Laws which place responsibility for the team’s conduct firmly on the captain.

Responsibility of captains

The captains are responsible at all times for ensuring that play is conducted within the Spirit of the Game as well as within the Laws.

Player’s conduct

In the event of a player failing to comply with instructions by an umpire, or criticising by word or action the decision of an umpire, or showing dissent, or generally behaving in a manner which might bring the game into disrepute, the umpire concerned shall in the first place report the matter to the other umpire and to the player’s captain, and instruct the latter to take action.

2. Fair and unfair play

According to the Laws the umpires are the sole judges of fair and unfair play. 

The umpires may intervene at any time and it is the responsibility of the captain to take action where required.

3. The umpires are authorised to intervene in cases of: 

Time wasting, damaging the pitch, dangerous or unfair bowling, tampering with then ball or any other action that they consider to be unfair

4. The Spirit of the Game involves RESPECT for: 

Your opponents, your own captain, the roles of umpires and the game’s traditional values

5. It is against the Spirit of the Game:

To dispute an umpire’s decision by word, action or gesture, to direct abusive language towards an opponent or umpire or to indulge in cheating or any sharp practice, for instance

(a) to appeal knowing that the batsman is not out;

(b) to advance towards an umpire in an aggressive manner when appealing;

(c) to seek to distract an opponent either verbally or by harassment with persistent clapping or unnecessary noise under the guise of enthusiasm and motivation of one’s own side.

6. Violence

There is no place for any act of violence on the field of play.

7. Players

Captains and umpires together set the tone for the conduct of a cricket match. Every player is expected to make an important contribution towards this.