Code of Conduct (Player Behaviour)
CV will continue to closely monitor player behaviour in Victorian Premier Cricket. Traditionally, cricket has been one sport to maintain and exhibit the highest levels of conduct and sportsmanship. While always a most competitive game, the continued strength of the sport has relied upon the acceptance of the umpire's decision and the preparedness to play within the "spirit of the game".
The areas of major concern which are unacceptable to CV are:
(a) The use of offensive language - generally as a disparaging remark to an opposing player or toward an umpire, or even as an expression of frustration or self-admonishment. This includes racial or religious vilification (any act that is reasonably likely to threaten, disparage, vilify, offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or group based on race, religion, descent, colour or national or ethnic origin).
(b) The questioning/disputing of the umpire's decision - often in an aggressive or sarcastic manner. This applies equally to dismissals and unsuccessful appeals as to the judgment of calls on no-balls, wides, byes, etc.
(c) The excessive number of frivolous and ridiculous appeals - primarily aimed at pressuring and intimidating the umpire into a favourable decision.
(d) The actions of the dismissed batsman - in failing to leave the crease promptly on being given out and any equipment abuse (e.g. banging the bat into the ground or against the fence or race, etc. and/or throwing the bat or equipment during or after his return to the pavilion).
(e) "Send offs" - usually to a dismissed batsman by the bowler or a member of the fielding side. This can often inflame the situation and lead to a more serious altercation.
Whether or not such behaviour is evident in international or interstate cricket or whether the language used is considered "acceptable" by today's society is of little concern to CV. CV is primarily interested in in having all cricket under its control played within the spirit and traditions of the game. CV has two processes for the reporting and consideration of unsatisfactory behaviour:
1. Serious breaches of misbehaviour will see the player immediately reported by the umpire(s) controlling the match. (Refer Premier Rule 11 and the section which follows - Reported Players).
2. For less serious breaches where an umpire has occasion to speak to a player regarding his behaviour, but does not believe a report is necessary, the incident will be noted on the Umpires' Match Report and the player will receive a caution. Should a player receive three such cautions in a season, he will be reported by the Premier Cricket Manager.
IN BOTH INSTANCES, SHOULD A PLAYER BE FOUND GUILTY OF AN ACT OF MISCONDUCT, HE SHALL BE LIABLE FOR A SUSPENSION AS DETERMINED BY THE CV TRIBUNAL.
The recruitment and retention of umpires has become increasingly difficult and it is certainly not being made any easier by the regularly unacceptable levels of player conduct. Few people are willing to continually subject themselves to the childish behaviour and offensive language which is too frequently prevalent on and beyond the cricket field.
All players can certainly play a role in raising the general standard of umpiring and the level of experience within the Premier panel by lifting their personal level of behaviour and permitting the umpires to concentrate on those aspects of the game for which they are responsible.
All umpires will be requested to take a firm line with respect to player misconduct especially with regard to the use of offensive language and the disputation of any decision.
ALL PLAYERS SHOULD BE WELL AWARE OF THE STANDARDS EXPECTED BY CV AND CONSEQUENTLY ANY PLAYER CALLED TO APPEAR BEFORE THE CV TRIBUNAL CAN EXPECT LITTLE SYMPATHY AND, IF FOUND GUILTY, A PERIOD OF SUSPENSION.
It is the responsibility of everyone involved with Premier cricket - club officials, team captains and especially the players, to ensure a return to the levels of conduct and sportsmanship traditionally inherent in the game.