Neymar faced a lot of criticism last night for over-acting when Celtic captain Scott Brown kicked out at him, but barely making contact in the process. Sometime back in July, a certain Stuart Broad was scrutinised heavily for not walking after clearly edging the ball to first slip in the first Ashes Test.
Some would say both players cheated. But, hey. Barcelona won and so did England.
Their unsportsmanlike behaviour went a long way in their respective teams’ victorious conquests. Would they have been more satisfied if they lost but had maintained their dignity? No chance.
Legandary American football player Henry Russell Sanders once said, “Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing.”
If you look at the sporting world today, truer words have not been spoken.
A friend of mine once compared cheating in sport to copying in a college internal examination. It’s just human tendency to make the most of what you can to reach the pinnacle of your field.
But when you’re cheating in an examination, aren’t you cheating only yourself and no one else? You’re not inspiring anyone by peeking into your mate’s answer-sheet. Simply put, one scoring more marks doesn’t have much of an affect on others as cheating in sport does.
When you cheat in a game, you’re cheating millions of fans over the world. Nearly 60,000 Celtic fans watched in horror yesterday as their captain was given his marching orders. The Scottish champions, who beat Barcelona in the same fixture last season, were putting in a solid display despite having very little of the ball, but BHAM!
In one moment, their hopes were shrunk, reminiscent to the way Neymar’s body strength diminished when Brown made contact with him.
Earlier this year, Dinesh Ramdin was suspended for two matches after claiming to have caught a ball that had actually dropped out of his gloves and hit the floor. That, for the ICC, was an act of cheating.
But Stuart Broad standing his ground after guiding the ball to first slip wasn’t. Where’s the bloody consistency?
Does it make sense to ban Ramdin because his form of contempt is a rare occurrence in the game, while batsmen standing still after an edge is bourgeois? Laughable, isn’t it?
Broad cheated Australians and I bet my gaff that Broad won’t like fielding close to the boundaries while the return Ashes takes place down under later this year.
Unethical methods will be used in sport as long as sport exists. Let’s face it, just like Sandres said, winning is everything!
It’s the duty of the officials to cut down on cheating. Just like Ramdin was banned, every sportsmen who embroils in unscrupulous activities must be condemned.
Sport is a powerful medium and the last thing we need is young people getting inspired by charlatans.