Field Theory by Hadyn Green

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Field Theory: Professionalism is killing nostalgia

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  • Tim Michie,

    Currently there will be no swapping between the Heartland and Division Una, though that is still up for discussion.

    Yes. Please. It almost ties back the sportsmanship Walsh believed he saw: Plucky local team makes good headline and some more Union support in the Heartland who've shown they're keen and putting in the effort.

    Super 14: If you take the Highlanders out I'm sure the other SANZAR members would want to put up prospective teams. But anyway, the Highlabders have something others can't quite equally offer: a captive Otago University student crowd to buy product by the gallon.

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Graeme Edgeler,

    Taranaki? They've got a stoopid cow as a mascot...

    Waikato has a cow. Taranaki has a bull.

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 3202 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    Waikato has a cow. Taranaki has a bull.

    And it's a real goddamn bull, not some out-of-work actor in a suit

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    I was surprised to read the other day the origins of the hit the ball twice rule in cricket. There should be no nostalgia in cricket about a gentler game.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    It's one of the new rules and it's been around since at least 1744. You've got to love cricket.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    It's one of the new rules and it's been around since at least 1744. You've got to love cricket.

    Cricket is more of an elaborate ceremony than a sport, particularly in test form. Although most sports are fairly ceremonial, now that I think about it.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    the Highlabders have something others can't quite equally offer: a captive Otago University student crowd to buy product by the gallon.

    Except that with an early February start, half the Super 15 will be over before they've even slept off the orientation hangover.

    And cricket... I've always considered it to be the thinking man's Sumo.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Bruce Morley,

    This is not new stuff by any means - the seminal work on this is the chapter titled "The Degradation of Sport" in the the book "The Culture of Narcissism" (Picador), by the American philosopher Christopher Lasch, way back in the 70s. Essential reading - boy, was he ahead of the game (pun intended).

    Auckland • Since May 2008 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • tussock,

    If only they'd kick the super-14 teams into their own division. Then there'd be ...

    5 super division, home and away then internationals.
    6 premiere division, home and away and a final.
    6 division one, home and away and a final.
    9 heartland rep, round robin for 8-team seeded knockout.

    But, no, SA doesn't want to disturb the curry cup, so we have to follow their lead, and us and Oz couldn't find the sponsors for just us, them, the PI's, Japan, and Argentina. Ah well, would have been awesome, but never mind, better the corporate dollars than a great competition.


    Hmm, you know, speaking of corrupt local government, Auckland would be spending two and a half billion dollars on rugby grounds for the world cup to proportionately keep up with Dunedin.

    Since Nov 2006 • 607 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Deans went to his deathbed firm in his stance that he, and New Zealand, was robbed on that day.

    Thus it would seem New Zealand's attitude to defeat has not changed in 100 years...heh heh

    Said the Welshman ;-)

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    There should be no nostalgia in cricket about a gentler game.

    Come now, what could be more gentlemanly than this?.

    If, however, no player comes to the wicket because all eligible players are unable to bat (e.g. through injury or illness) then they are not given out timed out; instead the innings is declared closed and 'absent ill/injured/hurt/dead' is noted next to those players' names as appropriate.

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Public Servant on a tea-break.,

    "Thus it would seem New Zealand's attitude to defeat has not changed in 100 years...heh heh"

    It would have been a perfect series.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2008 • 67 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    And, IMO, it is not our attitude to defeat, but our attitude to injustice .

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    on his assertion that professional sport is destroying the things we hold dear about sport itself.

    He was very woolly in his assertions, maybe 'cause he is somewhat out of his depth when articulating those supposed "things we hold dear about sport".

    See Im not sure that sport somehow didn't just hitch itself to this wagon called "The Higher Aspirations of the Human Animal" that was sitting idle at the roadside, where it has been left by some other fading organisation sometime early last century.

    A mantle that was always been something of a millstone for both participants and followers of the various codes. Now it seems that time has come. Sport is now a career path, a way for more of us to make a good living doing something they are good at and like doing. Its a profession and good luck to those who can set themselves up doing it in their youth, golfers are exempt.

    But making such people national role models( I concept I loathe) just overburdens the player and the code.

    But I guess there will be many who will be partisan when at an NZvAUST game. Its one thing I dont seem to share.
    Maybe a stadium resounding with boo's even when Aust are just taking a penalty kick(and builds to a climax as the kicker takes the kick) makes me reticent about the benefit of this kind of populist displays.

    What are those things we are supposed to hold dear about sport again? Apart from participating is better for you than spectating 'cause we are an animal that needs exercise.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1878 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    And, IMO, it is not our attitude to defeat, but our attitude to injustice .

    LOL and that would be about as subjective as a spear tackle viewed by an irishman....

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 790 posts Report Reply

  • FletcherB,

    And, IMO, it is not our attitude to defeat, but our attitude to injustice .

    81st column beat me.... but as a non NZ-born resident, I was going to point out that when the subject is "All Black losses" many NZers seem to have difficulty distinguishing between the two...

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 887 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Look, it's axiomatic. The ABs are not only the best rugby team, but demigods above the level of all other rugby teams. The media tells us this, frequently. They have 4 million players, for one thing - other sides only get 15.

    So if the ABs lose, there must have been skullduggery afoot.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens,

    So if the ABs lose, there must have been skullduggery afoot.

    And in every rcorded instance, this skullduggery was the work of FOREIGNERS!

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2210 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Rowe,

    See Im not sure that sport somehow didn't just hitch itself to this wagon called "The Higher Aspirations of the Human Animal" that was sitting idle at the roadside, where it has been left by some other fading organisation sometime early last century.

    I wonder if this fading organisation is the army or British Colonialism. While sports has been professional in many forms for centuries, its rise to being one of our forms of mass entertainment (at least in the British tradition into which we have fallen) is a post-WW2 phenomenon. As an example, English footballers had a maximum wage until the early 60s. (sorry, can't embed this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_Haynes#First_.C2.A3100-per-week_Player)

    We've replaced war with a sport as a way for young men (cos it's always been about men) to prove themslves under pressure. Whereas we used to lionize millitary leaders we now worship pop stars and pop sportsmen.

    Lake Roxburgh, Central Ot… • Since Nov 2006 • 574 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    We've replaced war with a sport as a way for young men (cos it's always been about men) to prove themslves under pressure

    Could be, or do young men like to put themselves under pressure?
    That said, I think its an artificial pressure and has no relevance in day to day life.
    Unless you plan on going to war at least once in every generation.

    Whereas we used to lionize millitary leaders we now worship pop stars and pop sportsmen.

    Whereas we should just appreciate their abilities in whatever chosen field of sporting endeavour they choose. But it doesnt make them a cut above the rest of humanity or a role model.
    Sport is an entertainment and that to my mind is all.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1878 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    Re my earlier 'injustice' remark...

    I was referring to times when a lack of natural justice was evident - that Dean's non-try being the trigger.

    But I'm happy to admit that most AB losses are beaten up by the media into a national froth and not a few fans tend to believe that all losses are the result of skullduggery by the cheating foreigners. For myself, I take the result as it stands whether I am happy with it or not. And I'm not particularly happy about the weekend's loss to the Boks - too many unforced errors (to go with plenty of forced errors as the Boks put the ABs under 40 minutes of pressure in the 1st half). Beaten on the day, but to be a real fan you have to stick with it during good times and bad. Did I mention that I am a Highlanders fan? I do 'the bad times' as well as the good. ;-)

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Beaten on the day, but to be a real fan you have to stick with it during good times and bad.

    I think cricket fans are more attuned to this mindset.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    Fans of the Black Caps, fans of the Warriors, fans of the Highlanders...

    The highs are sweeter because of the lows we have been through.

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    So if the ABs lose, there must have been skullduggery afoot.

    And in every rcorded instance, this skullduggery was the work of FOREIGNERS!

    Actually I'd say our media are fairly harsh on the All Blacks if they lose. It's more of a "how dare they play badly" than "someone done us wrong". Take the last two loses, nothing but bad words for players and coaches alike (though the media often seems to be at a loss as to who exactly is to blame).
    And as for the role models:

    we should just appreciate their abilities in whatever chosen field of sporting endeavour they choose. But it doesnt make them a cut above the rest of humanity or a role model.

    is all well and good and I completely agree. Except that I (and I imagine others here) are the kind to look to the sports world for role models. We pick and choose role models that suit our ethos. This is because we are smart.

    However, if you were a young person (and I can't believe I'm about to put forward a "won't someone think of the children argument) watching sport and thinking that you would quite like to be a sportsperson yourself when you come of age, then you might model your behavior on that of those whose talents you admire.

    This might mean going to the gym for hours but it could also be that you might think that you can go out, get tanked, do some rather nasty things and still be able to represent your country/club/whatever. I suppose this might be like a budding writer emulating the drug binges of Hunter S Thompson.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    I think cricket fans are more attuned to this mindset.

    Fans of the Black Caps, fans of the Warriors, fans of the Highlanders...

    The highs are sweeter because of the lows we have been through.

    Fans of Bay of Plenty and the New York Jets and Mets too

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

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