Tuesday, 8 July 2008


I've just had what usually gets referred to as a 'fresh air' game in cricket; a game where you don't do anything except get out in the fresh air for a bit. Annoying enough in itself, but the opposition had a pair of their first team players in, both of whom were rather arrogant. I've never really understood this business of arrogance in sport, or indeed in other fields.

There are those who say you have to have a touch of arrogance to succeed, but it seems to me that what you really need in that regard is self confidence, and that arrogance and bluster are slightly different things. In my other sport of fencing, I've had the good fortune to run into some fairly top notch players (in other words, I've had the chance to get beaten horribly by them) and they are, for the most part, perfectly nice people. James Williams, who won Britain a silver medal in the Olympics at sabre, seems to be a lovely bloke on the occasions when I've been around him at opens.

Instead, the arrogant ones often seem to be at that next level down, where they're better than most people, but still not good enough to be top notch. It seems that their insecurity is such that they can only feel better about themselves by rubbing in how much better they are than other people. Then again, maybe they just haven't grown up enough to realise something important: without your opponents, there wouldn't be a game at all.


Andi said...

Your final line is absolutely true of sport. . . but your overall point on arrogance is extremely valid to me. When I meet arrogant people or when I feel arrogance rise up in myself, it's most often when self-confidence is actually at an all-time low. People who are talented and confidence don't need arrogance.
And I do hope the fresh air was lovely.

stu said...

The fresh air was... fresh. Also there was mud.