Locals hit out at Ashes effort
IPSWICH cricket tragics are turning off their televisions in frustration while the city’s leading umpire says Ricky Ponting has disgraced his country.
The city, like the rest of the nation, is rebelling against the petulant Australian cricket team who look destined to surrender the Ashes to England at the MCG in Melbourne.
Mark Dalgeish, a first grade cricket umpire for 13 years in Ipswich, said Ponting’s prolonged confrontation with umpire Aleem Dar over an appeal during Monday’s play was a disgrace.
“Even in Ipswich, players have not treated me with such disrespect,” Mr Dalgeish said.
“Ponting has disgraced Australia.
“It is difficult to get people to become umpires and when you have the captain of Australia behaving like that it will only be more difficult.”
Ponting was fined 40 per cent of his match fee, $4500, for remonstrating with Dar.
But Mr Dalgeish said the penalty was too light.
“He should have been suspended for at least one match,” he said.
“You have to have a real penalty or that sort of behaviour will continue.”
But Mr Dalgeish is not the only person furious with the Australian cricket team.
What should have been a ratings bonanza for Channel Nine has become a disappointing failure.
Winston Glades resident Bruce McNeill would normally be glued to the television during a Boxing Day Test, but spent yesterday at the cinemas instead.
“Its just not worthwhile watching the cricket at the moment. I might as well go to the movies instead,” Mr McNeill said.
Young Ipswich cricket fanatic and fast-bowling all-rounder Josh Schweitzer, 12, has watched nearly all of the Boxing Day Test and said he could not believe how poorly his favourite sporting team was performing.
“The batsmen are playing such poor shots,” Josh said.
“You would think if you are good enough to play for Australia you would know how to leave the ball outside off-stump.
“Its just frustrating seeing how poorly they are batting.”
Australia were 6/169 at stumps and poised to lose the Test.