Wisden Cricket Monthly: Where is cricket’s Marcus Rashford?

Features, Print, Sport

With athletes increasingly making their voices heard on issues that transcend their sport, Isabelle Westbury asks why cricketers continue to stay within the boundary rope.

About halfway through 2020’s bizarre summer of sport, athlete activism was contagious. A flurry of fixtures were postponed in support of the Black Lives Matter movement as it swept through the US and beyond. Professional footballers in the UK routinely ‘took the knee’. And then there was cricket.

At first, there was no question that England’s men, alongside the West Indies, would take the knee before each match of their Test series. But as the summer progressed, with visits from Pakistan and Australia, neither England, nor their opponents, did so. The ECB instead issued a vague commitment to the overall “inclusion and diversity space”. An attempt to please all, to avoid conflict, to detach politics from sport.

The full version of this article can be found in the magazine, Wisden Cricket Monthly, January 2021 (Issue 39)

The Guardian: The lack of diversity in cricket journalism holds back the sport

Features, Print, Sport

While coverage is shaped by mostly male, white and privately educated journalists, it will not engage large sections of society

By Isabelle Westbury for Wisden Cricket Monthly

When lockdown started and sport stopped, cricket journalists were provided with a unique opportunity to look in on themselves. Nostalgia replaced live action and sport’s writers, and talkers, turned to what they knew and where they came from. It confirmed, in stark terms, an industry that does not reflect the UK population, whether it be in terms of gender, ethnicity, socio-economic background, education, sexual orientation, able-bodiedness or geography.

The full version of this article can be found in The Guardian, published 11 November 2020, and the Wisden Cricket Monthly, November 2020 (Issue 36)

Wisden Cricket Monthly: The forgotten foot soldiers of the IPL

Features, Print, Sport

As India continues to struggle under the weight of the pandemic, the United Arab Emirates came to the rescue by agreeing to host this year’s IPL. But while fans lap up the cricket, and financial stakeholders continue to enjoy the tournament’s riches, there is a darker side to the arrangement.

The IPL has begun, and it’s brilliant. We only need turn to England’s own unexpected summer of cricket to understand the power and respite of sport in moments like this. 

But just as the glitzy razzmatazz of the IPL provides us with the entertainment and escape we so desperately crave, the tournament’s staging in the United Arab Emirates also offers a stark contrast. A contrast between some of India’s most highly paid, well-looked-after superstars and some of its most poorly paid, exploited citizens, without whom the tournament could not have taken place: Indian migrants to the UAE.

The full version of this article can be found in the magazine, Wisden Cricket Monthly, October 2020 (Issue 36)

Medium: More Johns than women

Features, Print, Sport

There is a real lack of female representation in our sports coverage right now. And it’s a big problem.

Even when there is no sport. Indeed, especially because there is no sport. Because women are disproportionately affected.

Across the sports pages of last Sunday’s nationals, eight Johns wrote articles, as did four Neils(!), and a grand total of seven women.

Of 166 sports articles (I know…) just three were on women’s sport (<2%).

The full version of this thread first featured on Twitter, on 25 April 2020, and can be accessed  on Meidum here.