As England defeated Australia in the fifth Ashes Test of this year by 135 runs at The Oval on Sunday, the series ended in a 2-2 draw which meant the visitors retained the urn. However, that did not stop the English cricketers from celebrating their Test victory.
But the celebration that had followed after the English victory was unlike any. Cutting aside their disappointment of not regaining the urn at their home, Joe Root & boys joined the visiting players in their dressing room to celebrate the shared series together.
It did not matter to them that after two months of fiery battle and hard cricket against each other, there emerged no winner. Instead, what can be found among the players is satisfaction and the sheer amount of fulfilment, having been part of the most hard-fought cricket series on planet and not losing it.
From the untamed on-field agression against each other to, maybe, some weird drunk-joke, the Australian and English cricketers have reflected the true culture of the sport in its purest form. There have numerous incidents and videos of them, throughout the five-match series, where the players have been seen calling words at each other which they should not have.
But then that was Ashes they were part of, the highest cricketing honour for both the countries to either gain or lose. The mental pressure that constantly forces the players to fight a battle within should forever remain unknown to the fans.
These players, too, are humans who are vulnerable to mental pressure and its the workload that gets better of them sometimes to result in an ugly on-field spat. Thus these clips and images of players celebrating together hold more importance to reflect the fact that some amount of “humanly” behaviour can be entertained in the gentlemen’s game unless it’s racial.