The Spirit of Cricket


Australians are justifiably proud of the place sport has in their daily lives. However, what is equally important to all of us involved in cricket is the way the game is played and the manner in which all participants conduct themselves.


The “Spirit of Cricket” is fostered by the values that you (as a volunteer administrator, coach, teacher, parent, or player) bring to your team, club, and the game itself.


Cricket can be a highly competitive game.  The Australian team leads by example by playing the game hard but fair. However it is important to play within the Laws and the spirit of the game. The following key elements provide a guide to help those involved in cricket apply the spirit of the game and foster a healthy and effective development of the spirit within your cricket community.


Fair Play

According to the Laws of Cricket, umpires are the sole judges of fair and unfair play. The umpires may intervene at any time and it is the responsibility of the captain or coach to take action where required.

The captain and coach are responsible at all times for ensuring that play is conducted within the spirit of the game and within the Laws.


Captains, coaches and umpires together set the tone for the conduct of a cricket match. Every player is expected to make an important contribution to play the game in good spirit and fairness.


Where a player fails to comply with the instructions of the umpire - criticising by word or action the decisions of an umpire, showing dissent or generally behaving in a manner which might bring the game into disrepute - the umpire concerned should, in the first place, report the matter to the other umpire and to the player’s captain or coach, and instruct the captain or coach to take appropriate action.


Umpires – managing the match

The umpires are authorised to intervene in cases of:

  • Time wasting;
  • Damaging the pitch;
  • Dangerous or unfair bowling;
  • Tampering with the ball;
  • Any other action that they consider to be unfair.



    The spirit of the game involves respect for:

  • Your opponents;
  • Your captain, coach and team;
  • The role of the umpires;

    The traditional values of cricket


    Against the spirit

    It is against the spirit of the game to:

  • Dispute an umpire’s decision by word, act or gesture;
  • Direct abusive language towards an opponent or umpire;
  • Indulge in cheating. Such instance may include:
    • Appealing when knowing the batter is not out;
    • Advancing towards an umpire in an aggressive manner when appealing;
    • Seeking to distract an opponent either verbally or by harassment with persistent clapping or unnecessary noise under the guise of enthusiasm and motivation of one’s own side.