What price plastic Brits?

I only mention Greig, Lamb and Pietersen because they represent the latest example of sporting plasticity – in cricket, as it happens. But shouldn’t I include Strauss? At what age or after how long ‘on probation’ should an immigrant become eligible for national honours? This is a general question about all nationalities – although I don’t suppose many countries want former Brits to represent them (corrections please on high-value negotiable instruments).

Backside reckons under the age of ten would be about right. More than six years in a British school should remove any stubborn veneer of foreignness – you know, unsporting behaviour, a tendency to rat on mates, re-emigrating to the Antipodes – that kind of thing.

Such a rule would mean we could keep Mo Farah too – but have you noticed? We soon forget their roots when they really please us?

Author: Janus

Hey! I'm back ...... and front

10 thoughts on “What price plastic Brits?”

  1. Môre Janus

    Not many mention Matt (Stumper) Prior, I also watched Manuamoa Tuilagi, Mouritz Botha and Brad Barritt in England shirts this year.

    Perhaps time to roll out that old joke about where do England touring teams stay when they tour South Africa? Answer, with their parents 🙂

  2. Very true point. I saw the programme Sky did on this and it’s very interesting to watch. is English sporting success really coming from English athletes?
    nichollssportblog.wordpress.com

  3. Perhaps time to roll out that old joke about where do England touring teams stay when they tour South Africa? Answer, with their parents :)

    Very nice! 🙂

  4. sheona :

    Not sure about keeping Mo Farah, Janus. He moved his family to the USA last year.

    Ah, yes, but he’s still in Team GB. We can overlook details like where he lives! 🙂

  5. You mention KP, I found this a great read over on the DT and thought I’d share (I’ve already sent it to a couple of my mates)

    from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/cricket/international/england/9490689/England-captain-Andrew-Strauss-is-the-only-man-who-can-save-Kevin-Pietersens-international-career.html#disqus_thread

    I just love the ECB approach.

    ECB: “You can’t pick and choose what forms of the game you play in. I know Strauss only plays test cricket now, and plenty of others play only one or two forms, but you have to commit to all three.”
    KP: “OK, I commit to all three forms of the game.”
    ECB: “Too late, and we don’t think you mean it. We’re not picking you for the T20 World Cup – you know, the one where you were voted player of the tournament last time. We don’t care that you have more experience playing T20 in Indian conditions because of that-tournament-we-don’t-like-to-talk-about. We want to make a point.”
    KP: “Fine. Can I play for Surrey?”
    ECB: “No. Oh and someone at the Daily Mail says you said something nasty in private about the skipper. You need to apologise.”
    KP: “You don’t know what I said, you’re going on a rumour that a journalist heard.”
    ECB: “Doesn’t matter, apologise publically. We don’t care what for.”
    KP: “I apologise.”
    ECB: “Well we’re not accepting your apology.”
    KP: “Why not? You asked me to apologise and I did.”
    ECB: “You’re South African and we don’t like you.”
    KP: “So is half the team! So is the gaffer!”
    ECB: “They’re different. They haven’t done anything vulgar like have the three lions tattooed on their arm. And they went to public school.”
    KP: “Well how can I sort this out?”
    ECB: “You need to speak to Strauss and Flower.”
    KP: “When can I see them?”
    ECB: “You can’t. Strauss has gone on holiday. He said you called him a dumb c***.”
    KP: “He is a dumb c*** – did you see that leave in the second innings?”
    ECB: “The less said about that the better.”
    KP: “Well what about the gaffer? You said I had to speak to him.”
    ECB: “He’s not around either.”
    KP: “He is. I saw him on TV at Lords earlier, going on about how we need to talk and sort this all out like adults.”
    ECB: “Exactly. Behind closed doors though. No PR stuff.”
    KP: “What about the walls and roof? You bastards said my contract discussions were behind closed doors, but you seemed to leave all the windows open because half Fleet Street knew about negotiations before I did.”
    ECB: “We don’t know what you’re talking about. We absolutely do not regularly dine with Daily Mail reporters at Claridges.”
    KP: “Whatever. I want to speak to Mr Flower and sort this out. Why won’t he speak to me?”
    ECB: “Well he doesn’t like you anymore, despite you being our leading run scorer and stuff. He heard you might have said something about him although the Saffers say he wasn’t mentioned in those texts. The possibility that you might have said something hurtful has hurt his feelings.”
    KP: “You’re all a bunch of doos.”
    .
    🙂

  6. It seems to me that a rather pertinent point is being comprehensively missed here. Is English by choice of any less merit than English by happy circumstance? All of the people mentioned here are quite free and able to return whence they, or their parents came, should they be so inclined…but, they’re, clearly, not.

  7. christinaosborne :

    I note you have removed my comment.
    What very bad form.

    Hear, hear!

    Peter Oborne wrote a very unpleasant piece in the DT the other day http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/cricket/9477566/Englands-South-Africans-are-on-a-sticky-wicket.html

    which I suspect was the source of the trinity heading this blog, namely Greig, Lamb and Pietersen. Mr Oborne did what so many of his ilk do; he made sweeping generalisations about white South Africans. It never ceases to amaze me that the concept of racial prejudice is deemed illogical when practised in South Africa, as it was under apartheid, but those very same people who condemn it practise it themselves in denigrating South Africans. During the first test, the DT’s ‘ball-by-ball’ presenters, posed the question, ‘Is South Africa the most unlikable test team?’ They would not dare ask that question about any other country.

    As it happens I used to know Alan Lamb reasonably well. The last time I saw him was in Cape Town when England last toured there, 2009-10. I asked him the question, which given that he had retired was largely academic, whether his loyalty lay with England or South Africa. He was almost offended. He said he had been living in England far longer than he had in SA, his children were English, as were most of his friends, so of course that was where his sporting loyalty lay. It just so happened that he also had a strong bond with SA.

    The problem lies not with the sportsmen who move to where the most lucrative contracts can be had, but with the countries and governing bodies who grant them the means to play there. If you do not like foreigners playing for your country, do not select them.

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