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The Good, Bad and Ugly ft Salary Caps, Test cricket’s greatest advert and the Sarfraz Ahmed controversy

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Good Bad Ugly - August 9 edition

Sportsfcafe

The Good, Bad and Ugly ft Salary Caps, Test cricket’s greatest advert and the Sarfraz Ahmed controversy

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Siddhant Lazar

08/09/2020

Another week goes by and 2020 continues to deteriorate and get even worse but that has left us with a lot to talk about in this week’s edition of ‘Good, Bad and Ugly’. From the English football making sensible moves, to a boxing controversy to shocking redundancies but the world keeps spinning.

The Good 

Salary caps implemented in League One and League Two

After years of watching smaller clubs with immense historic significance within the English football pyramid slowly fall victim to financial mismanagement, things are finally changing. As in a landmark move, clubs within the League One and League Two (third and fourth division of English football) have voted to enforce salary caps of £2.5 and £1.5 million respectively. The hope is that this helps reduce the effects of the coronavirus, helps clubs manage their finances a lot better and at the same time places everyone on a level playing field. But while this is a massive step, the EFL’s (English Football League) next goal has to be getting the Championship and the Premier League to implement the same as well. But for now, this is a smart step forward in the right direction.

England vs Pakistan Test is the great advert for Test cricket

What a Test match this was! After 2019 left us with Headingley drama, England, once again, were at the centre of another epic battle, winning the game after almost giving up. At the centre of this fourth innings brilliance was two unlikely batsmen - Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler, who defied a fiery Yasir Shah on their way to a solid three-wicket win. Yasir was turning like the man sitting across in the commentary box - Shane Warne - and even when England were just four runs away from a 1-0 series lead, with four wickets in hand, Pakistani fans still had hope as big as their unsurmountable belief. England won, but no, Test cricket actually won, with all their glory.

The Bad

Manpreet Singh and four other players test positive for COVID-19

Five players, including India hockey captain Manpreet Singh, tested positive for the coronavirus after they arrived at the Sports Authority of India's National Centre of Excellence (NCOE) in Bengaluru. The five men flew back to the camp after a home break and had travelled together to Bengaluru with reports indicating that they could have contracted the virus while travelling. This will, however, have no effect on the camp with it set to resume from August 20th despite the positive tests. While everyone has mild situations, considering the impact this virus is leaving on our lives, we can pray hard for their quick recovery. 

Vikas Krishan boxing scandal

After allegedly breaking quarantine rules at NIS Patiala and embarrassing the Sports Authority of India (SAI), Vikas Krishan has now decided not to return to the camp at all. The 28-year-old boxer was asked to leave the camp in mid-July and has since been training in Bengaluru’s Institute of Sports but revealed, in a recent interview, that he has no plans of returning. To make things even worse, Krishan is now planning to leave the country altogether to compete in the US against professional boxers to help him train for the Olympics. The boxer admitted, that it’s because he believes the camp is not good enough for him to secure a medal at the Tokyo Olympics.

The Ugly

Arsenal lay off 55 people over coronavirus

In possibly the worst move made by a sporting organisation of the week, English Premier League club Arsenal have started the process to lay off 55 non-playing staff from the club. The statement released by the North London side revealed that it’s because of the effects of the coronavirus with them looking to cut costs. They’re the first major side to do make redundancies and the decision to do so has seen the club turn the world against them. Their players are reportedly unhappy at the decision as they took a pay cut to help prevent this, and to make things even worse the club’s statement revealed that this was to “to enable us to continue to invest in the team”.

Sarfraz Ahmed water carrying controversy

The fact that Sarfaraz Ahmed was carrying a pair of shoes and then later water bottles for his teammates isn’t what earns this incident a place in the Ugly category. Neither is the way the world, aka Twitter, erupted in favour of what Ahmed did but rather the way the other half of the world reacted to what a former captain was selflessly doing. A few even took things too far and called Ahmed “a docile and weak man” and for many others, it fuelled their need for drama and the ongoing conspiracy theory that Misbah-ul-Haq hates Sarfraz. All because Ahmed, who wasn’t playing in that particular game against England, decided to do what the likes of Don Bradman, Virat Kohli, Sachin Tendulkar, and many others in the past have done.

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