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Some wonderful tributes this afternoon with Crystal Palace's Mile Jedinak and Reading's Adam Federici taking bats onto the field before their teams' respective matches at Swansea and Norwich respectively. Respect also shown at Twickenham and the Millennium Stadium before the England v Australia and Wales v South Africa rugby union internationals.

I'm relieved a decision to delay the Brisbane Test has been made. Having seen poor Michael Clarke in absolute pieces when addressing the media late last night, there is no way those guys can even think about cricket right now.


And another cricketing tragedy today, this time in Israel.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-30260842

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The problem the ICC has in this is that the genie has probably been out of the bottle for about 40 years. You will never stop it now. It is simply a question of control and sanction. It isn't good eno

Is spitting at the opponent also a part of cricket? I do recall an incident in which an Australian Cricketer spat at a West Indian cricketer. You certainly cannot support that atrocious behaviour as a

Would have been the biggest choke of all time if South Africa had lost that after bowling Sri Lanka out so cheaply. A sad farewell to the one-day stage for the two Sri Lankan greats Kumar Sangakkara a

Hugely emotional scenes in Macksville today as Phillip Hughes was laid to rest. The first thing I heard when I turned the radio on this morning was Michael Clarke's incredibly moving tribute. I've always respected Clarke as a player and an opponent but, over this past week, I have found a whole new respect for him as a bloke. Well played, skipper. You did your mate and your country incredibly proud today.

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:) New Zealand has beaten Pakistan in the One Day series in the UAE 3 - 2. Some exciting prospects for the buildup to Feb 12 start of the CWC. All home international ODI build up matches all the way through till then! :D

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Two new captains have been appointed ahead of the World Cup, with Eoin Morgan replacing Alastair Cook as England skipper and Jason Holder being named as the West Indies' new leader.

For cricketing reasons, there was no choice for England other than to replace Cook. Personally, I would have appointed Joe Root as captain and looked to the future, though I guess Morgan is seen as a safe enough pair of hands for the tri-series in January and the tournament to come. That said, I do think Cook has been treated very shabbily by an ECB hierarchy that couldn't have had a worse year if they'd tried.

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Stunner of a day here in the Mt today, such a shame Bay Oval didn't get any matches during the Cup.

Glaring omission, but so were a few others...

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The New Zealand cricket team seems to be gelling right on time with a come from behind test win over the always formidable Sri Lanka. Taking out the two test series 2-0. Now onto the one day series to lead up to the World Cup.

Australia is on top of it's test series against potential back to back world champs, India. These two teams lead the potential winners ranks in the up and comming tournament in February.

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I'm not sure how good that Sri Lankan side really is, even though they won over here last summer, but I thought you had the makings of a really good side when you were last over here a couple of years ago. Given home advantage, I see no reason why you shouldn't get to the semi-finals at least.

As for the Aussies, I struggle to see anyone beating them to the trophy. India's batting unit is very powerful, but I'm not sure they've got enough in the bowling department. South Africa will be a big threat and both Pakistan and the West Indies can be on their day. Don't ask me what to expect from England as I have no idea.

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The NZ cricket team for the World Cup has been named and will play out the nine remaining one day matches it has until the event begins next month. 7 against sri Lanka and two with Pakistan. Full on summer of cricket for the next 8 weeks.

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Former NZ captain Martin Crowe is suggesting the ICC introduce the yellow and red penalty card system after yet another serious "sledging" incident involving Australian team member David Warner. The lastest incident involved Warner bantering and baiting Indian player Rohit Sharma. When goading into replying Warner ramped up the anti telling Sharma to "speak English" repeatedly. At the end of the over both men had to be restrained but Warner continued with the comments and match officials had to intervene.

The ACB is investigating the incident however Indian cricket official's want to take it further as David Warner already has a record of offensive and borderline racist badgering.

Crowe wants the ICC to enforce the code of conduct on the pitch beyond "gentlemanly sportsmanship" that umpires and match officialshave to work with for now. They can order a player from the ground but at the moment a team captain has to agree with it. A card system would give umpires outright control of discipline of player conduct.

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That was an instance of blatant disrespect on part of Warner - he seemed to have completely forgotten that cricket is also based on courtesy and politeness, rather than being some kind of green-grass version of boxing...a sport where taunting, baiting and provoking your opponent is perfectly acceptable and almost expected (though gracefully, some boxers refuse to play that game). In my view, this is not an issue of an Australian player, but one individual player who happens to be from Australia and has no emotional control: Even Cricket Australia has warned him to "stop looking for trouble".

Either way, this type of behaviour has no place on the pitch - and personally, I feel he should have been fined AND suspended for this borderline xenophobic conduct. Only when bullies are taught a lesson will they think twice.

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he seemed to have completely forgotten that cricket is also based on courtesy and politeness, rather than being some kind of green-grass version of boxing...a sport where taunting, baiting and provoking your opponent is perfectly acceptable and almost expected

Not really. Sledging and mind games and trying to test the mental toughness of the opposing players has long been an integral part of cricket.

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That was an instance of blatant disrespect on part of Warner - he seemed to have completely forgotten that cricket is also based on courtesy and politeness, rather than being some kind of green-grass version of boxing...a sport where taunting, baiting and provoking your opponent is perfectly acceptable and almost expected (though gracefully, some boxers refuse to play that game). In my view, this is not an issue of an Australian player, but one individual player who happens to be from Australia and has no emotional control: Even Cricket Australia has warned him to "stop looking for trouble".

Either way, this type of behaviour has no place on the pitch - and personally, I feel he should have been fined AND suspended for this borderline xenophobic conduct. Only when bullies are taught a lesson will they think twice.

Australia Cricket has always taken "sledging" way too far. All teams do it but Australia pushes it to total disgust. England are known for being just as bad but have toned it down. There is nothing sportsmanlike about attacking a player over a family tragedy or personal misfortune, and then there are the suggestive racist slurs. David Warner is considered the worst anywhere, most believe he suffers "short man's syndrome" hence his insecurities.

Hoping this disgusting form of one upmanship is stomped on during next months World Cup.

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Sledging is not an 'integral' part of cricket, it is practice that has crept up on the game and now seems to even overshadow the game play in some matches. It is turning people off the game, against the Australian team, and affecting the ability to recruit young people to the sport.

It is BULLYING- something we reject in other areas of life, and don"t need to see on the sports field. It is childish and immature. It reflects badly on my country and its people and in a belief in fair play. Unfortunately it does reflect a certain 'macho' and immature attitude of many Australian men.

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It was always there...But only involved a player's cricket playing ability and was a two way thing. There are some classic Shane Warne moments out there but he got as good as he gave. And it was never outside cricket playing ability. Wicket Keepers are the worst with a constant flow of needling comments. There have been some hair raising moments...Can remember NZs Mark Greatbatch nearly wrapping his bat around Allan Border's head after being LBW.

The ICC is now looking into this form of psychological warfare and curbing it because it really is getting bad out there.

And Sledging has spilled over into other sports codes. Rugby League is now becomming notorious for it, just ask Willie Mason, a classic offender...a well placed tackle usually shuts him up. Netball is another code that is starting to see nsty banter on the courts.

The fact that some commentators find it an acceptable form of gamesmanship clearly show there's something wrong in Australian sports in general.

The saddest thing is young kids watch this and deem it acceptable.

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The problem the ICC has in this is that the genie has probably been out of the bottle for about 40 years. You will never stop it now. It is simply a question of control and sanction. It isn't good enough in this era for a situation like the one between James Anderson and Ravindra Jadeja from the Trent Bridge Test last summer to drag on for weeks. Real power must be given to both the on-field umpires and the match referees to stamp on the most unsavoury elements.

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Is spitting at the opponent also a part of cricket? I do recall an incident in which an Australian Cricketer spat at a West Indian cricketer. You certainly cannot support that atrocious behaviour as a "test of the mental toughness" of the opponent. Such displays simply must be crushed, utterly, from all sport.

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Seen a commercial for Saturdays Opening Ceremony on tv last night. Hoping that this opening Ceremony will change the trend of **** openings of 2015 after the AFC Australia opening and Granada Universiade opening fiascoes.

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Seen a commercial for Saturdays Opening Ceremony on tv last night. Hoping that this opening Ceremony will change the trend of **** openings of 2015 after the AFC Australia opening and Granada Universiade opening fiascoes.

No, Im pretty sure the organising committees are taking a different approach for these ceremonies. Looks like they are more community based concert events, rather than stadium events (infact, I don't think either are taking place in a stadium).

I don't mind to be honest, as long as it's not pretending to be a stadium spectacular.

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Looking like a concert in the park...Weather is looking iffy on Thursday as well. Unlike the OC at the start of the brilliant 1992 WC, there is no first match straight after.

Both opening matches are on Saturday.

They keep playing highlights of the 1992 cup on sky and mainstream TV...It would be a bummer if this WC cannot emulate the magic of 1992.

Still just a wee bit to long for my liking. Weather changes something wicked in late Feb through March.

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As our South African friends know only too well.

Yes...the fkworth lewis debut...so glad England got their arses served to them by Pakistan in the final.(no offence).

Saw clips of the dress rehearsal for tomorrow's OC...looks tacky. Expect the usual NZ and Aussie kitch. Kids running everywhere, maori warriors poking their tongues out etc...

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New Zealand v Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka chasing down 331 ... 124/4. Middle order beginning to wobble.

Australia v England underway

England bowling first.

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