ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

Arguably the toughest man in the fabled history of Australian cricket has broken his silence over the ball-tampering saga this morning, telling journalists that the outpouring of grief from the cricketers involved, the team’s coach and the wider public has rattled him.

Allan Border was captain of a cricket team caught in the tides of change.

The period after the halcyon days of the Chappells, Lillee and Thompson – when the Australian cricket team had conquered the world.

The team Border inherited was not.

“If we weren’t the best team in the world, we had to be the toughest,” said Border this morning in Sydney.

“That meant no crying, no whining, no feeling sorry for yourself. And above all, no cheating. That’s why this week will just about do me. I mean, Jesus Kay Car-rist. An Australian Cricket Captain doesn’t cry on television,”

“I know there’s a lot of smooth-palmed people on the internet who say that masculinity has become toxic. Yeah, maybe they’re right. Maybe they should put on some cricket creams and make a few tonnes in England and the Caribbean? Try talking to Joel Garner about toxic masculinity. Try having a pow-wow about toxic masculinity with Beefy Botham. He’d just stack the leg-side and come in around the wicket in a thinly-veiled attempt to hurt you.”

However, a number of media personalities who haven’t scored centuries around the world have labelled Border’s comments as ‘out of touch’ and ‘Jurassic’.

But all of those people weren’t prepared to go on record, fearing Border would storm over to them and threaten to put them on the next plane home.

More to come.


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