BBC BLOGS - Eleanor Oldroyd
« Previous | Main | Next »

Ask the politicians

Post categories:

Eleanor Oldroyd Eleanor Oldroyd | 10:22 UK time, Wednesday, 24 March 2010

So how will you decide which way to cast your vote when the country goes to the polls, sometime between now and the summer?

Will it be spending on hospitals and schools, plans for fixing the economy, or attitudes to the environment which will persuade you where to put your cross?

Or maybe you're interested in what part sport will play in the respective manifestos of Labour, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats?

We're standing at the start of a decade which should see sport placed at the heart of national life as never before.

David Beckham and Wayne Rooney back England's World Cup bidShould more money be spent on the World Cup bid or grassroots sport?

There's the Olympics in 2012, of course, the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, World Cups in rugby league in 2013, rugby union in 2015, and cricket in 2019 - and possibly even football in 2018, all to be staged in the UK.

So how do the politicians plan to maximise the opportunities offered by all these great events taking place on home soil? Will we be a healthier nation as a result?

It's one of the questions we'll be asking of the three men who are hoping to hold the portfolio of Minister for Sport when the new government is elected.

Current incumbent Gerry Sutcliffe, Conservative spokesman Hugh Robertson and Don Foster of the Liberal Democrats will be joining me in front of an invited audience this Thursday.

We'll be at a location redolent with English football history - Wembley Football Club is just round the corner from the national stadium, and Sir Alf Ramsey's team trained on the pitch there during the 1966 World Cup.

No doubt football will be high on the agenda for our debate, but we'd like you to help us set it, too.

Should we have an independent regulator, appointed by the government, to control who owns our football clubs? How do we get our kids off their computer games and out kicking a ball around? Where should we spend more money - on the World Cup bid, or on grassroots sport?

Maybe you'd like to hear the politicians' views on whether the Ashes should be available on free-to-air TV - or whether there's enough PE available in schools.

Post your thoughts here, and we'll try and put as many as possible to the panel on Thursday; and you can hear the debate as part of Five Live Sport from 7pm.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    Are sportsmen, especially footballers, paid too much? Is it fair that some are paid 10 - 20 times more in a week than many harder working people get paid in a year?

  • Comment number 2.

    Can we get clarification with regards to the distribution of public tickets for the 2012 Olympics. Locog are claiming 75% will be available, but is this across all disciplines ? Recently I have seen a programme where it was claimed that a mere 20% of tickets for the mens 100 metres final will be available, the rest going to the Olympic family, sponsors and other hangers on.

    Paul Deighton is being evasive about this, which leads me to believe its true, which is a travesty, and we should start lobbying now to ensure that doesn't happen.

  • Comment number 3.

    1. Do you think that the Olympic Park Legacy Company can retain the Mayor of Newham on its Board when he is openly backing one particular solution to the post-2012 stadium bid, one which seeks to break legacy promises to the IOC, when a public sector tender procedure is yet to be completed? Is the Mayor's position untenable after repeatedly demontrating a crass contempt for the rules of public sector practice??
    2. Is that whole process a farcical waste of public money if the Mayor of London, who retains a 50% share of OPLC, is also claimed in the media to back that same solution, when multiple other actors wish to participate in a fair and open tendering procedure which has apparently already been fixed ex ante?
    3. Would you consider it a prerequisite for football to be justified in gratuitously insulting all other sports (as certain members of its fraternity are currently doing to imply they are the only worthy recipients of the 2012 stadium legacy contract) to put its own financial house in order, with particular reference to the new 3 year global EPL deal being used not to fuel salaries but to pay HMRC debt, non-football creditor debt, bank debt and soft loans from owners, to minimise the likelihood for the requirement of a multibillion pound bail out of an industry destroyed by financially criminal charlatans?
    4. Would you consider it an open and shut case that no further public money will channelled through any football club until debts are sorted out?
    5. Would you recommend that all medical claims made by EPL clubs be subject to public inspection to eliminate the perception that widespread match influencing takes place through 'injuries', whose occurrence appears to reduce the offering paid for by season ticket holders without them being recompensed financially as a result?
    6. Would you agree that linking NHS costs to sporting participation may be a more beneficial role in society than encouraging the repeated drinking of multiple millions of pints of ale and maintaining a sedentary lifestyle??

  • Comment number 4.

    Question for the panel - with the vast number of sporting events in the next decade taking part in England (with the exception of a couple of football games in the Olympics being in Cardiff and Glasgow) what can the other countries in the Union expect to see in terms of benefit both in an economic sense and, more importantly, in terms of sporting legacy?

    This is especially relevant given we are seeing the regeneration of vast areas of London for the purposes of an Olympics being paid for, in large proportion, by the entire country, yet Glasgow's Commonwealth Games bid is receiving next to no support from the UK Government by comparison, instead having to source income from the Scottish Government and other private sources.

    Gavin, Edinburgh

  • Comment number 5.

    Would any of the candidates consider a tax on overly fatty and sugary foods that could then be given in its entirety to sports for children, making them fitter and healthier in both their diet and by giving £Ms to sports

  • Comment number 6.

    ...or, how about a pledge to increase sport at primary schools (when obesity can be counteracted easily), including extra specialist teachers and a set level of (for example) an hour sports activity per day?

  • Comment number 7.

    I have had the misfortune of attending a 'non-competitive' football match for youngsters in recent weeks. Whilst I can appreciate the sentiments behind it, I find the implementation of the concept quite sad. Why do schools and associations insist on utilising this? To me, this inhibits ambition and teaches kids from an early age that being average will suffice. Do you think this would happen in Australia? Not a chance!

    More needs to be done to instill a high level of drive into kids. Do MPs really think a meaningless game of footy is going to pull them away from their Playstations (other games consoles are available).

  • Comment number 8.

    Do all three of the panel agree with the conclusions of the Davies Review into broadcasting of major sports events on free-to-air television?

    In particular the issue of having test match cricket available on free-to-air television?

    Will a future government of whichever persuasion follow developments regarding Olympic TV rights for 2014 onwards closely and ensure that they remain free-to-air in their entirety as they are at present?

  • Comment number 9.

    Will the next Sports Minister come clean with the public on the true cost of the Olympics?

    We were told £2.4 billion, now £9.4 billion but the real figure is going to be closer to £17 billion but will they have the guts to admit it or keep claiming £9.4 billion and misleading the public and then hope they can come clean once the figure comes out after the Olympics?

  • Comment number 10.

    With all the money being invested Cycling, one of the GB's top olympic sports will there be any money invested in the mountain bike side of the sport, Downhill and Cross-Country. Cross Country is an olympic sport and we have hardly have any representatives which in a few years could definatly be changed.

  • Comment number 11.

    Computer use and consoles combined are now the leading leisure pursuit of 8-11-year-olds in the UK and, in all reality, this is unlikely to change. On top of this developments such as the Wii, www.footee.com and the Eyetoy are now using children's enjoyment of gaming to get them active - an approach that can prove to be successful, as demonstrated in a recent study at Derby University. So, with this in mind, would your government look to include an element of this type of encouragement/motivation to get children active, alongside other initiatives (this would never work on its own, but would work well alongside/paired with other initiatives) or would they continue with the demonising of computer games (just look at the sentence in this article for an example!)?

  • Comment number 12.

    My question to all 3 MPs is:

    Shut up & go away.

  • Comment number 13.

    One of the measures of how successfu the Olympic legacy has been for the U.K is the facilities it will give back to the general public and while it may be more difficult to judge the impact in cities outside of London - it should be easier to judge the legacy left on London itself. With this in mind, what is your ideal scenario, post London Olympics, to ensure the Olympic stadium gives back some of the £5-600 million it cost to build it to the community?

  • Comment number 14.

    when is the final crown jewels event list coming out?

    Please include the Ashes and the Northern Ireland matches onto this because I am fed up of a sport being built up on terrestrial tv and Sky Sports coming in so I cannot see it. Sky have no interest whenever something isn't doing so well and then take the rights away whenever it has a free to air audience.

    For instance the Northern Ireland matches were of no interest to Sky whenever they were 118th in the FIFA world rankings but once they become successful and start beating England and Spain they are taken away and now have to make do with BBC NI highlights. Now I still get excited about the matches as it is my national team but restricted to radio or having to go and watch it in a pub which is expensive.

    Another instance was with the Test Matches which they had no interest in until England started winning well and becoming the second best test team in the world from 2002 to 2005 and then suddenly Sky come in and nobody can watch England unless you have Sky. Once again only highlights on five. In my opinion all test matches should be on terrestrial but i suppose the Ashes is a start and you can see the exposure terrestrail has as shown with the Ashes in 2005 on Channel 4, Rugby World Cup on itv in 2003 and wimbledon on the bbc. You see the amount of kids playing tennis during the summer and people playing cricket in 2005. Last year the Ashes was thrilling but didn't have the excitement of 2005 as i was resticted to channel five highlights and TMS.

    So, Please make the right decision and stick with your proposals released before Christmas and do not listen to some who have pound signs flashing before their eyes and appreciate the ordinary fan and not the rich fan who have Sky and those who can afford. If you backtrack on your proposals like the ECB and other organisations like the IFA are encouraging it is almost like you do not care about the ordinary viewer and are just care about Sky and money!!!

  • Comment number 15.

    Does the sports minister, having threatened to pull tennis funding last year, feel now is the time to pull the plug on British tennis funding? the LTA have spent £10 million of a £30 million budget on grassroots tennis, which is all well and good if it's being used properly, but it's only really helping the upper classes who pay for the coaching provided by this £10 million. Where's the other £20 million gone? 'Projects' like Roehamptons £500,000 canteen? Or the massive wages Draper and his yes men and nodding dogs earn?

    I think it's worth destroying the LTA and starting again with people interested in actually encouraging youth into tennis, not filling their own wallets; they're a waste of space and money. It would be interesting to see if he thinks along similar lines.

  • Comment number 16.

    How important to the role of Sports Minister do you see the acquisition of the hosting of the Football World Cup in 2018?

  • Comment number 17.

    1: With the 2018 and 2022 World Cup hosts being decided by FIFA later this year, what would the prospective sports ministers and their governments do to give England the best chance possible of securing one of the two events?

    2: What are the prospective sports ministers' attitudes towards the protection of free-to-air televised sports in the United Kingdom?

    3: Considering recent events at Portsmouth Football Club, will the prospective sports ministers, if elected, work to ensure that HMRC and the taxpayer do not continue to be the lender of first resort for struggling football clubs?

  • Comment number 18.

    What are the Government's plans for the School Sport Partnership network - including Partnership Development Managers, School Sport Co-ordinators and Competition Managers?

    The network is well embedded within school sport now and is making a significant difference to the way in which PE and School Sport are delivered. It would be a massice set back to reduce this network at this stage, especially with the Olympic and Paralympic Games on the horizon.

  • Comment number 19.

    Have any of the candidates looked into the sport of Speedway as it seems to be one of the few sports being covered by Sky Sports that recieve considerably less amount of money in comparison to other sports broadcasted with a similar number of viewers.

  • Comment number 20.

    Now that a member of one of the richest sporting leagues in the world has gone into administration, is it not now time to force english football clubs to look at the issues of ownership, debt and costs?

    Premier League clubs should not be allowed to continue eating heartily from the table of riches on offer to them. Regulations need to be put in place to ensure that prospective owners are vetted before they assume control - what is the nature of their background, intentions and financial wealth? English football must be allowed to remain a sport, not a business opportunity for bored billionaires to exploit.

    They must also be held to account for their spending and debt. Premier League clubs, it would seem, have been given, or have taken, the power to do whatever they want in regard to spending what they (don't) have. It would be very simple to force clubs to spend only what they can afford (i.e. insuring that debt, whilst existing, does not get out of hand). Arsenal, it could be argued, have their debt under control, and are managing their business very capably. Whilst Man U do not seem to know where the stop button is.

    What it boils down to is better regulation of what football clubs do, and are allowed to do.

    It is no longer possible to 'nip this in the bud'. This problem has already flowered. Someone must now do some weeding. It means appealing to FIFA for better regulation, in order to ensure a level playing field for all football clubs - and a better experience for football fans, who are tired of listening about the latest football club in trouble financially, instead of just in trouble at the bottom of the table.

  • Comment number 21.

    Why has the Governmentnever backed the British Grand Prix, despite having back to back world champions?

  • Comment number 22.

    Will any of the spokesmen agree with me, and many thousands of ordinary football fans, that a 2018 World Cup bid which is based on the tradition and history of English football is fatally undermined by the inclusion of Milton Keynes Dons as a potential host? Will they tell the Football Association to remove Milton Keynes from the bid as a condition of continuing government support? Do they agree that it is bizarre to include a stadium which is far below Fifa standards, in a location very close to London and Birmingham, when more worthy candidates in towns that have earned, rather than stolen, their football league places have been overlooked?

  • Comment number 23.

    i'm 15 (yes i know bbc i lied about my age) and at school there is from 11-14 2 hours of compulsory sport a week of which at least half an hour is taken up by changing, now we only get 90 minutes a week including changing. There are lots of clubs available however as they are optional it only means the athletic ones become more athletic. With the amount of dead time in a school week for example Social Teaching or PSE or whatever anyone cares to call it as well as the joke that is religious education is it not time that roughly 30-40 minutes of sport was made compulsory each day?

  • Comment number 24.

    Could the Ministers outline their plans regarding the structure and funding of English sport, particularly at community level - what is the future of Sport England? Youth Sports Trust?

    How will future funding be sourced, ringfenced and delivered - a centralised system or regionalised? Through NGBs?

    What action will they take to lessen the likely impact of the massive expected job (and service cuts) in public sector sport over the coming years.

    How will they continue to ensure that the direct benefits from the Olympics are shared around, rather than dished out to the same overpriced privileged selected few (that means contracts and supplier deals).

    I shan't even ask about getting serious answers to 'legacy' questions, as they'll be sidestepped.

  • Comment number 25.

    Can Lampard and Gerrard play together?

  • Comment number 26.

    do you think that there should be more opertunities to play spots 'under the radar' games like lacross or for instance hockey instaed of the ordinary football, rugby, and cricket

  • Comment number 27.

    What are your plans regarding motorsport in the UK, both in terms of maintaining current venues (eg: Donington Park, which has been left pretty much unuseable after their failed bid to host the british grand prix), and possible expansion (Such as the new silverstone development). The FOM have proven that they are not afraid to drop the british grand prix from the calender, and it is one of the few grand prix without government backing. Are there plans to ensure that there will be a race in the country to inspire future Jenson Buttons and Lewis Hamiltons?

  • Comment number 28.

    If it came down to a battle to host a major sporting event between Britain and Belize, whose candidacy would Hugh Robertson be ordered to support?

  • Comment number 29.

    What is been done to better disability sport in this country??

  • Comment number 30.

    Question for the panel regarding the plans to make Ashes Tests "free to air" on television:

    Firstly, what are the panels views on the proposal?

    Seconly, IF this did happen, would their be some caveat put in to ensure that the terrestrial channel that won the rights had to give the Ashes cricket 100% dedicated coverage? The reason I say this, is that play in the 2005 Ashes, shown on Channel 4, was constantly interrupted by horse racing (usually small meets). In addition, C4 moved start of play forward by half an hour and cut after match analysis as Hollyoaks was on at 6.30pm! Surely, given that dedicated sports satellite stations would be prevented from bidding, a terrestrial bidder would have to pledge not to treat the Ashes with such disrespect?

    Steve, Chatham

  • Comment number 31.

    Sport on TV

    The amount of both live and recorded sport on terrestrial TV has declined because Sky/Eurosport buy rights for silly money. We are a nation of sportslovers and whilst our focus may be on the key main ones are we not missing out on a chance to show children minority sports in the lead up to 2012 and foster their interest? Why should we have to buy Sky?

    For example the nation complained about the lack of success at the Winter Olympics. I agree that the funding differential tween winter and summer games is ludicrous and that it harms success but if it is delisted and bought by Sky what is the point of putting more money in as people wont be able to see it. Sky is getting in the back door with its sponsorship of cycling too - clever move!

    1) It is time the BBC stopped 'chasing ratings'. They have an obligation to show all sports not just the main ones and a weekly sports round up of all sports - BBC buys highlights rather than live action - would be good
    2) UK sports authorities who are able to sell sports TV rights should be forced to ensure that highlights are available on terrestrial TV at a sensible time and for sensible money. They have an interest in fostering take up/interest, but if it isnt on TV their sport will decline as will our sucesses.

  • Comment number 32.

    if i bung you 5k can you fix it for Birmingham city to win the prem ?

  • Comment number 33.

    Can we please have a single centre for excellence for England youth football, somewhere in the Midlands where the top kids are taught skills in preparation for future England careers that is welcoming and non-elitist, where some nod is given to expenditure without immediate results i.e. smaller kids aren't told, "you'll never make it, go away" and those with strong regional accents or from poorer areas aren't less likely to make England youth sides.

  • Comment number 34.

    Do you think it's about time that Wales started to build towards having its own first-class team? Scotland and Ireland have managed it and surely with a successful Ashes stadium and proven Welsh talent it seems very possible?

  • Comment number 35.

    My concern is grass roots football.
    Let me set the scene for you. Wednesday nights a few of us play 5-a-side at JJB soccer dome at 'Pride Park' (don’t get me started on that one!). We’re not very good but it gets us out the house and keeps us relatively fit. This week we were struggling for a side, we only had 4 regulars, myself and my lad Barry, big Dave and little Dave (this can be confusing to those who don’t know Dave and Dave, until they see them in the showers), so we drafted in Barry’s friend Archie Hart.
    Where’s the problem I hear you ask? Well, we couldn’t charge Archie, he was doing us a favour by making up the numbers. This meant that the 4 of us had to stump up the £36, yes, thirty six pounds, for the 40 minute game. That’s £9 each! Throw in a few beers and a lucozade or two and it becomes hugely expensive.
    How can they justify this sort of price? If we find it expensive, how can your average 17 / 18 year old afford it? It will surely just stunt player development forcing kids back onto the street and the inevitable sound of footballs clanging into garage doors. I don’t believe this will spawn the next Wayne Rooney, regardless of his ‘Street Striker’ football show.
    It’s about time something was done.
    Regards,
    Frank.
    P.S This rant has nothing to do with the fact we lost 14-4.

  • Comment number 36.

    Is there anything that you, as Sports Minister, could or would do to regulate the finances of football. Is there a way to force football to live within its means? As part of this, are there legal ways to stop outsiders buying into the british game by putting the cost of the purchase onto the club, and then rendering the club finacially damaged or even insolvent - such as Portsmouth, Liverpool, Manchester United?

    At a lower level, what can be done to control out of control spending at clubs like Weymouth or Chester?

    Are you inclined to have the government act to save Enlgish football where the FA has so obviously failed?

  • Comment number 37.

    Will the candidates commit to improving facilties and allowing easier access for leisure activities. E.g. easier access to tennis courts for leisure, which will get more people invovled in the game and more playing competitivly. Secondly will you commit to funding accademies through out all sports. E.g. football, tennis, cricket, rugby, athletic accademies all ran by different individuals, to improve our standards.

    Finally will you continue to sacrific the amount of money and attension given to winter sports. We could do rather well in long/short track speed skating, all varities of ice dancing/figure skating, curling, and ice hockey if we put some money and some facilities and accademies in place, and continue to do well in events such as the skel bob. Also are any of you willing to funded Sir Steve Redgrave's idea.

  • Comment number 38.

    Since we have an Italian in charge of our football team, a Dutchman in charge of our athletics, a Beligum in charge of mens tennis and a New Zealander in charge of the Welsh Rugby team. Previously there has been Zimbabwayen's, Australian's, New Zealander's, I could go on, in charge of our teams what are the panel going to do to ensure that British coaches get the experience and exposure they need to be able to have success at the highest level and are chosen to manage/coach our national teams

  • Comment number 39.

    Some good questions on here. I think there needs to be time devoted in this debate/discussion to the subject of money in football.

    It is pointless asking the politicians, 'do you think footballers get paid too much?' like Gunners989 suggests in comment1. I share his inference that it can't be 'fair' for certain footballers to earn 100 times more than the average person in Britain. But really, what are they going to say in reply? They'll probably agree, but say it is something out of their control and refer to the fact that these players are paing 50% income tax on their earnings and so are, in a way giving back.

    The next Government to hold No.10, needs to use its influence, to put pressure on both UEFA and FIFA. These organisations need to be pressured into conducting widespread reviews of the relationship between money and football.

    I want to bring in the 2 most talked-about issues for football fans at the moment:

    1) ownership: greater scrutiny is needed over anybody looking to invest largely in any proffesional football club. National Football Associations need to come together at UEFA HQ, to compare review processes. Different nations have different vetting procedures and if the countries' FAs come together, the result can only be beneficial.

    2) wages and the way they are structures: It seems wrong, that you can pick up a newspaper on Monday which contains a list of the 50 richest footballers in Europe and feel your eyes bulge as you look at a figure between five and ten million pounds a year, and then pick up the same newspaper on the Tuesday, and read about how a club is struggling to pay a £4 million tax bill. (Especially the case, for anybody that watched ITV's 'Piers Morgan on...Sandbanks' three nights ago - both Sulley Muntari and Pedro Mendes were featured as having properties in this, the richest part of the country, and then the following morning on ITV, fans of Portsmouth - the club both players played for when the programme had been made - were profiled on the news demonstrating against their chief executive for having overseen and having failed to prevent the club's slide into administration). Wage caps, will never be introduced in England, Spain, France, Germany and Italy unless UEFA impose European-wide caps. No country will go first, no country will say 'right, no-one earns over £35,000 a week' because they know, if they are the only country to have imposed a cap, then all of the best players in their league will leave to other nations. So any wage cap needs to be a pan-European cap. It is time, for UEFA to hold discussions over wage limitations.

    2 issues most football fans would like to be reviewed. Whichever party gets elected, needs to - even if the FA aren't keen to - put real pressure on football's governing bodies to take a much closer look, at the relationship between football and money.

    ***We pay council tax and we expect the council to use it wisely. We pay income tax and charges on alcohol, tobacco and just about everything, and we expect the Government to use it wisely. We pay £30 a week to a football club, we demand it be ran sensibly.*****

    ross, http://footballshorts.wordpress.com

  • Comment number 40.

    My question is this

    Fraud in football is RIFE, players, clubs and organisations.

    What are the minsters going to do about it?

    Players are paid exorbitant amounts of money, £100k+ a week, and then still have the audacity to avoid paying tax.

    What measures are the ministers going to put in place to eradicate this issue?

  • Comment number 41.

    What's your stance on women in sport? Would you take particular measures to encourage girls into team sports, especially those traditionally dominated by men? What measures, if any, and how would you fund them? In your opinion, what part should the media play in encouraging girls to take up a sport?

  • Comment number 42.

    What is more important for the future of British cricket, the public being able to watch the home ashes test series on free-to-air television or the money and investment from selling the broadcasting rights to SKY?

  • Comment number 43.

    Football Liquidity. Should Football clubs be under the same control as some our major UK financial institutions? Most clubs are bankrupt and running with huge debts... Is this feasible for the modern game or are we going to see a succession of football clubs going Bankrupt until they are run on true business rules.

  • Comment number 44.

    pre and post match conversations with fellow supporters (admittedly in the pub), home or away, inevitably drift from our teams current form to atmospheres, of our own grounds or others we've visited. every loyal fan i speak to of a premier league team seems to say things along the same lines, that they are not anything like as good as they used to be, consistently, throughout the premier league. commonly, two main reasons for this are identified; ticket prices and all seated stadiums. as an eighteen year old match going fan, i am too young to remember what older supporters refer to as 'the good old days', but as a stretford ender, i am all too aware of the 'hit and miss' nature of modern day atmospheres, and not just at old trafford. the regular increases of ticket prices make it much more difficult for the genuine local working class fans to afford tickets, and it is these fans that in my experience add to atmospheres more. so, to my first question, what would you be willing to do if elected to ensure the traditional football fans, that made the game in this country the national jewel it is, are not continuously priced out of turning up to support their team at the ground, even more, that ticket prices are returned from the current state to consistently more affordable throughout the season, as keeping them as they are will change nothing. my second question, is why are the current spineless people that are running football so stubbornly against the return of standing? i am not suggesting the cramming people in like it used to be, but there is an excellent system used in germany where no one is endangered as a result of being in a SAFE standing area. why can't a similar system be introduced and closely monitered here? i'm not even suggesting entire grounds be made safe standing, but have a large enough areas of both seated and standing, so that people at least have the choice, so they watch the match amongst people with the same preference.
    thank you

  • Comment number 45.

    Should England's national teams (especially the cricket team) set much higher standards of behaviour.
    We've seen a lot of cheating and low standards by England's Footballers recently (e.g. Rooney's diving, Gerrard's altercations in clubs and diving (sorry going down easily), Terry's, Cole's and Neville's general behaviour and demeanour) but should we expect and demand better from our cricket team.
    Recently in Cricket we've seen Bresnan not walk when he clearly edged the ball (against Bangladesh). Broad is constantly querying umpires decisions or sulking, Collingwood refused to allow New Zealand's Grant Elliott to return after a run out caused when Sidebottom barged him over. Before that we had the Pietersen saga with the Jelly Babies. Should players who behave like Bresnan be publicly called cheats and should they play for England again.

  • Comment number 46.

    I just finished listening to the programme on iPlayer. I didn't notice a single question from this blog being asked! We've been had. It was an interesting debate though, still worth a listen.

  • Comment number 47.

    I agree with Simon Wright. What measures are the ministers going to put in place to eradicate this issue?

 

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.