Why Every Man Should Watch Test Cricket!
Posted on April 05 2018
Despite the rise in popularity of the more glamorous 20/20 format, cricket is still not seen as the youngest and hip thing you can find yourself fascinated by. But it is exactly for those reasons that most people can’t stand the sport, that I find most compelling. What’s more, just to infuriate the cricket naysayers, those moments that sum up the essence of sport, and invariably have you jumping from your seat are littered throughout test cricket more than any other format.
That is because the very nature of Test cricket that most people hate, that it is “long, boring, and mundane,” is the very aspect that makes it one of the greatest sporting challenges. In any sport, it is often the mental aspect that separates the guys at the top from the guys who are talented but somehow just don’t make it, and there are few areas where this is as clear-cut as test cricket.
Take Dean Elgar in the third test between South Africa and Australia, the man got hit repeatedly, he played and missed, he watched as one by one his partners got themselves out, and yet, each and every time he came back ready for the next ball as if it was his first. 284 times he came back, many of those he did not score, some he got beaten hands down by the bowler, but 284 times he put that to the back of his mind and treated the next ball on its merits. This is what sport is about, mental fortitude, perseverance, and heart. In the end, Elgar carried his bat, along with a few bruises off the field unbeaten, having collected 141 runs for his team.
Elgar is certainly not the most stylish of players, he doesn’t have the greatest technique, and I’m sure there are plenty more talented batsmen out there, but he has what it takes to be a great sportsman: the mental edge. If you have to watch the ball go straight through from the bowler to the wicketkeeper 150 times in order to see Elgar reach is 100 then that seems a small price to pay to see a perfect example of what makes a man a success.
Admittedly I do feel like a bit of an addict when I sit through those overs where nothing happens, and I keep telling myself ‘just one more over,’ but if you persevere like Dean Elgar you will eventually be rewarded. I think that is what I love most about test cricket, that it mirrors life in this way. If you keep running in and never let your head go down, eventually you’re going to see that stump cartwheeling out the ground. In life, as in a test, you have to toil if you want to succeed.
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