'Arrogant' Cricket Australia slammed in damning report

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Waugh said the Australian cricketers have been living in a "bubble" and were out of touch with reality that they failed to understand the gravity of their offence. "The other thing is there's indications in there around how negative feedback is not well taken [by CA] and in some cases players decided they didn't want to do it and referred through us, and we compiled an appropriate submission".

"What the Longstaff Review reveals is that Cricket Australia itself must also take a share of responsibility for what happened in South Africa".

As quoted by Fox Sports Australia, the review reports found that, "There were frequent comments noting the vast pressure on players always to win and the unacceptability of anything less than in all forms of the game". "Rather, it made the fateful mistake of enacting a program that would lead to "winning without counting the costs".

An independent review by a leading ethicist said the governing body put too much pressure on the players to win at all costs. Chief executive James Sutherland has left after 17 years and Pat Howard, the high-performance manager, has said he won't extend his contract beyond mid-2019. CA has supported both recommendations.

The Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) termed the punishment on the trio "harsh" and called for a reconsideration but CA chairman David Peever remained adamant and turned down the plea.

At the same time, the ACA's president Greg Dyer indicated that relationships between the leaders of the two organisation had improved since last year's fractious pay dispute, even though he stated bluntly that much of the players' association's criticisms of CA over recent years had been fully backed up by the findings of Longstaff and McCosker. "There is a feeling among some state and territory associations that they are patronised while sponsors believe their value is defined exclusively in transactional terms". "If we are winning and playing well we nearly feel good as a nation and when that happened it was like a bit of a kick in the guts for everyone", Waugh said.

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And yet Pochettino insisted he was happy with the performance, despite the frustration of the result and the error that brought it.

Particular focus is placed upon the fact that in neither the "How We Play" element of the most recent Australian Cricket Strategy, nor the former coach Darren Lehman " s blueprint "The Australian Way", is any reference made to the spirit of cricket or to respect for opponents and umpires.

He said: "At Cricket Australia our objective is to unite and inspire communities through cricket".

File image of Steve Smith and David Warner.

The review recommends that players penalised for poor on-field behaviour should not be eligible as recipients for major awards. However, most of the respondents who mention bullying do so with a sense of dismay - seeing it at work on the field [abusive sledging], internally at CA and in the tactics employed when negotiating commercial outcomes. "That is, relentlessly playing to win seems to "justify" strategies that blur the accepted boundaries of fair play".

"As chairman of the board of CA, I accept responsibility for what happened in South Africa, but I'm also very confident that we're positioned to move forward from here".

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