Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Tony Tea

Self-indulgence over.


Australia's sporting prowess in inversely proportional to our relative wealth. Discuss

Tony Tea

That's a whole 'nother post. In short, though. In the amateur era Australia was good because we had a good standard of living and few countries played our sports. Then, after the ignominy of the 1976 Olympics, we moneyed up and stole a march on many countries for aths, swimming, and assorted nonsense sports. Now the rest of the world is wise to our scam and with so many countries having more people and throwing more money at sport, we are flagging. Be interesting to see how well we do at cricket if England, Pakistan, India, South Africa and even Bangladesh throw bulk lolly at cricket.

Then there is the argument about sport and poverty. If everyone in Brazil was as comfortable as the majority of Australia, would they have pumped out soccer stars. On the reverse, would Australia benefit in soccer if we had a massive underclass desperate to fight its way our of poverty?


Do the kids really WANT the success. It is a pretty comfortable life they have(thanks to us) By not doing very much at all we have become the richest nation on earth, but in sport it doesn't work that way

Tony Tea

I wonder if there is a correlation between a nation's median wealth and the amount its soccer players dive.


Brazil is great at soccer because they have 300 million people. They'd be even better if their economy was better than average, so perhaps it is better that way. Likewise, Indian cricket was a preserve of the upper classes until pretty recently. If they get their shit together international cricket might become really un-interesting.

Population matters, but the evidence is that GDP matters more: Australia has a comparable GDP to England and India so we'll always be a big side. Not the dominant side, as historically we have been, but more often than not capable of competing with the best. Pakistan+Bangladesh just don't have the dosh to develop their side. NZ and everyone below just don't have the players.

Tony Tea

Brazil is an interesting study, since it has a lot of wealthy people as well as massive poverty.

Professor Rosseforp

I guess most religions preach platitudes of one sort or another -- be kind to each other, help people worse off than yourself. Yet beneath these platitudes there may be some sort of depth and meaning that speaks to human souls.
Coaching must be a bit like religion without the depth and meaning. "Watch the ball" "Don't let the ball go if it's going to hit the stumps", "play the ball, not the man" and my favourite, "Don't bend your arm more than 15%". Yes, the statements are all true, but even the biggest dill knows that. Can coaches actually get a top-class player to improve his game by something other than platitudes? As you say, that's what Deano needs to tell us about.
By their nature, Australian cricketers are not great at explaining what they are doing, unlike someone like Boycott or Brearley, but some day we might get some insights.

The comments to this entry are closed.