Cricket is a highly competitive game – brutally and ferociously competitive. This is why team spirit is an essential part of Cricket, without which a team would be worth nothing.
Nowadays, team spirit is not defined by words but by action or deed even though it is not all that obvious.
Before now, words such as “class,” “Aura,” “x-factor,” etc. were used to describe that unique and distinctive sporting team or individual performances. These words were bandied about in a bid to encapsulate a particular essence that is present, though difficult to put a finger on.
However, a new vogue word “Culture” is now bandied about in the Cricket community. The word appears to be a more professional – albeit upwardly mobile – version of what was referred to as “team spirit.”
It puts a name to the Cricket community which was created by team members that makes them hard to defeat. In most cases, however, it is defined in negative terms. For instance, a weakness that is identified or spotted in a team is referred to as a “poor culture.”
If that is the case, then what are the attributes of an “excellent” sporting team culture?
Positive cultures have to do with the readiness of cricket players to forgo their personal pride, attitude, and ego for the benefit or furtherance of greater team performance. There is bound to be some conflicts of interests of the individuals and the unit; but in these cases, one winner must emerge. It also follows that once a specific course is decided; it will be followed to the end.
Triumphs or successes are shared; mistakes must be met without blame but with one understanding; they will be rectified as soon as possible without any excuse given. Of course, skill and talent remain non-negotiable.
It is not every sport that places emphasis on inner unity or cohesion. But what makes Cricket different is that what is good for the individual – in most cases – is good for the team.
For instance, a double hundred can go a long way in setting up a game. Batsmen know when their partners are with them. Failures of trust and concentration can be very poisonous to partnerships.
Cricket is a long-duration competitive physical activity in which an extraordinary amount of time is spent inactive and uninvolved in the game. Behaviors during these spells matter a lot as well. Of course, it is not implied that selfishness is not valued in good cricket teams; it is just that it is demonstrated as a desire and hunger for the collective – not personal – success.
Culture, therefore, cannot be articulated; it is a common bond of expectations as well as following set standards as a team. It goes way beyond what people who try to define it by mounting it on the dressing-room wall before the start of a season, portend. It is determined by deeds, and not words.
So, taking care of your cricket culture is highly crucial if the team must keep winning their games.