Well-Being Australia chairman Mark Tronson says that there have been numerous legal proceedings associated with alleged physical abuse, substance abuse and illegal betting linked to the sporting field, all presumably when rules of a particular sport have been breached in some way.
Moreover these are associated with, when someone gets injured, loses unfairly or is subject to outside pressures to cheat in some way. This has given him reason to reflect that whatever happens on a sporting field, won't inevitably stay on the sporting field?
For physical abuse situations, the video is utilised in many sports today. The video provides evidence of on field behaviour that might be utilised in legal proceedings. There are however some sports, such as soccer, that may be disadvantaged in this regard as they do not permit video replays, although many top soccer matches are televised.
Sporting injury is a major issue for an athlete. Illegal behaviour on the field of play which causes injury is already part of legal history, there is nothing that new here. Likewise illegal substance and drug abuse in sports is well established, illegal betting is a major issue for sports and Cricket has shown itself in the line of fire. Fixing results are nothing new, just look at the history of dramas associated with boxing.
What might we say to this?
The "ideal in sport" is that of a competitive "level playing field". Anything that abuses that situation poses a serious issue for everyone involved.
The Commonwealth of Australia affirms a policy of a "level playing field" for the nation's youngest and brightest in sport have avenues to heighten their skills through various State and National Institute of Sports.
This provides young Australians competing internationally against other G1 Nations a "level playing field" in relation to sport science and preparation. Without such "high tech" opportunities our young athletes would not be competing on a level playing field.
In this scenario, what happens on the playing field is very much dependent on what occurs away from the playing field in such positive developments of sport science.
In essence says Mark Tronson, in reality we're talking about "foundations". In Sport, he asks, what are these foundations?
1) Athletes working hard on their preparations so they might take the heavy knocks in sport (building a physical foundation).
2) Strong rules against drugs in sport and top level drug testing (building a strong legal foundation for a level playing field).
3) Latest technology employed to catch out match fixers (building a strong foundation against those who falsify their endeavours).
This 'foundations principle' equally applies, to say,
1) Building a house (Jesus spoke of this, Luke 14 verse 30);
2) Going into a military conflict (Jesus spoke of this, Luke 14 verse 31) and
3) Spiritual warfare (the Apostle Paul addressed this, Ephesians 6 verses 12-14).
Proverbs 16 verse 11 "A just weight and balance are the Lord's." Nothing escapes this foundation principle.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He mentors young writers and has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children. Dr Tronson writes a daily article for Christian Today Australia (since 2008) and in November 2016 established Christian Today New Zealand.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html