Third man or “third person”? MCC takes cover


The MCC’s decision to replace “batsman” with “batsman” to make the term gender neutral has sparked a worldwide debate as to whether all the language of cricket will be revised to accommodate female players.

“So does the third man now become the third person?” Was a typical rhetorical question asked by a Daily Mail reader.

Not at the moment, it seems.

An MCC spokesperson (spokesperson?) Told the Telegraph: “The field position ‘third man’, as well as other terms like ‘night watchman’ and ’12th man’, are not included in the laws, and therefore any changes to these terms are beyond the control of MCC as guardians of the laws.

Tim Wigmore of the Daily Telegraph noted that the switch from batter to batter came “just weeks before Clare Connor became the first female president of the MCC in 234 years of history.”

Connor, former captain of the England Women’s Cricket Team, is currently the Managing Director of Women’s Cricket for the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).

The Daily Mail said: “The change follows The Hundred competition this summer, which also replaced the widely used Man of the Match with ‘The Hero of the Match’.”

Former England captain and BBC commentator Michael Vaughan tweeted: “Let’s be honest if it annoyed you to have a life … that’s totally good and that’s a good thing . “

The Daily Telegraph published opinion pieces reflecting both sides of the argument.

Its right-wing commentator, Simon Heffer, said batter is a noun “more commonly associated with foods in which fish are fried or Yorkshire pudding is made with – or, worse yet, the verb is associated with it. to horrible people who beat their wives and children. ”.

He complained: “As a member of MCC myself, I was not consulted – and almost none of the other 18,000 of us were either.”

He suggested that “no one would object to the use of the specific name ‘thresher’ in women’s cricket. There is a more sinister point here. Just as MCC has lately prostituted itself by claiming, for purely financial reasons, that The Hundred is really cricket, it now seeks to show how much it is in tune with the modern world by adopting that revolting word or a perfectly usable one. and universally understood had existed for a long time.

He explained, “Changing a word can be a small business for those outside the game, but

for those of us who love cricket, it is a sign of something sinister and self-defeating.

There will be fanatical conformists who like what happened, and no doubt the commentators will be ordered not to use the word “drummer” again.

But the argument for change was made by commentator Alison Mitchell, who said: a moment now. Top cricketers like Jos Buttler,

Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, and Joe Root have used the term interchangeably in men’s football for several years. The term is common in women’s football. The MCC now brings the two together, and in

it reinforces the positive feeling that cricket is a game for everyone.

“The message may be subconscious, but it is meaningful. The language is powerful.

“Think how many times ‘the Ashes’ is mentioned, without any clarification as to whether it is the male or female version. Invariably this will be in reference to males, as historically only Ashes males have informed the dominant conversation. “

There are also problems brewing here. Despite a personal appeal from Boris Johnson, British Prime Minister his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison said the country’s strict Covid quarantine laws will not be relaxed to allow families to accompany English men on their tour Ashes this year. Some cricketers have threatened to withdraw. English women will head to New Years for a multi-format Ashes tour.

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