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Right spirit is what matters: Brearley

‘It’s not about labels’
EXCLUSIVE
Mike Brearley

Calcutta: “It’s not about labels, not about cricket being or not being a gentleman’s game. The game should be played in the right spirit. Indeed, right spirit is what matters. That is just what we, in the MCC, emphasise onů”

That’s John Michael Brearley, among the most cerebral of captains ever, for you.

In a conversation with The Telegraph from London, Brearley said: “I would not get into whether cricket is played by gentlemen or not, what I can state is that it’s now played by a lot of hot-headed young men.”

Brearley’s comments were actually a follow-up to what he’d recently written on the James Anderson-Ravindra Jadeja fracas (‘Anderson crossed the line of respect’).

The column was, of course, very well received.

Meanwhile, in a first, Brearley will spend around three months in India from the end of the year.

Usually, Brearley and wife Mana spend a few weeks, largely in Ahmedabad, where the latter’s roots are.

“I need to spend more time with my wife’s family, don’t I? That’s why an extended trip,” Brearley quipped.

The Brearleys are expected to land in India in end October.

In December, however, Brearley will head to Sri Lanka for a few days to chair the MCC’s World Cricket Committee meeting.

Former India captain Sourav Ganguly is, by the way, set to join the Committee.

Brearley, in fact, intends working on a “project” during those three months or so in India. He didn’t get into specifics, but “form” would be the central theme.

Apparently, it won’t be limited to cricketers, but extend, say, to captains of industry and men in other fields as well.

Could the “project” turn into a book?

One isn’t sure, but Brearley already has four titles, including the iconic The Art of Captaincy, to his credit.

The Art of Captaincy remains the 72-year-old Brearley’s last effort — it was published back in 1985.

All three books before that had everything to do with The Ashes.