Surrey CCC introduce “walk-on girls” for match

// 8 June 2011

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Surrey County Cricket Club are very excited. For Monday’s Twenty20 match against Essex, they have some darts players as their guests of honour, and to mark the occasion, they are introducing walk-on girls to the proceedings.

Unsure what walk-on girls do? Well, they walk alongside players. Usually they wear scant clothing and stilettos. So they will walk out to the wicket with the batsmen. And then walk back again.

Surrey are extremely pleased with their clever idea, claiming it will add “a touch of glamour to an already crowd-pleasing format of the game”.

I’m a member at Surrey. I shall be in the crowd on Monday night. I’m not all that pleased. Nor are many of my friends and fellow fans – this is a great blog on the subject. And nor are some major figures – Alec Stewart responded to a tweet about the matter earlier today saying, “In full agreement with you and have expressed my views to @surreycricket.”

Cricket has fought hard to show that it’s not a sport trapped in the past, that it’s modern and forward-thinking. Surrey’s employment of this kind of crass, patronising, laddism-of-the-worst-order sexism is a step backwards.

It’s especially distressing bearing in mind how brilliantly the club dealt with the interest in Steven Davies’s confirmation that he is gay. A cynic might say that this introduction of increased heterosexism into proceedings demonstrates just a touch of panic.

There are complaints circulating and a bit of media interest, however. Watch this space. Maybe they will reconsider. Or not.

Comments From You

Clara X // Posted 8 June 2011 at 1:15 pm

I was at the Rugby Sevens weekend at Twickenham recently. Every time England came out, they were preceded by flag-waving cheerleaders wearing tiny shorts. The cheerleaders did a simple dance routine, but they were clearly there for no other reason than to look pretty. The mood in the audience (at least near where I was sitting) was a mixture of polite incomprehension and embarrassment.

Jennifer Drew // Posted 8 June 2011 at 11:42 pm

This is discriminatory to men! Where are the men walking on to the cricket pitch dressed in skimpy skimpy shorts so that female attendees can be sexually entertained. After all what is good for the goose is good for the gander is it not? Oh but I forget men are not sexualised commodities are they? They are autonomous humans whereas women’s sole value and worth is to sexually titilate the male spectators and entertain them before commencement of all important male only cricket match. Yes that’s male supremacy at its finest – once again exploiting women because we are ‘sex’ are we not?

Rachel // Posted 9 June 2011 at 7:34 am

This is awful news. I really hope other clubs don’t start trying this as well. I’m a recent convert to the world of cricket, and I’ll be so annoyed if they manage to ruin the game for me just as I get interested. Cricket audiences are dwindling everywhere – I don’t see how alienating (at least) half of the population is going to help!

Rowan // Posted 9 June 2011 at 12:06 pm

The thing that made me angriest about this is that my five-year-old son thinks the Surrey guys are awesome. He wants to play for Surrey when he’s older. So the last thing I want is for his idols to give him the impression that women are merely there for decoration, and they’re not worth anything unless they’re “pretty” (as in lads-mag pretty rather than genuinely beautiful) and wearing minimal clothing.

Rachel – I’m a recent-ish convert too. Like I said over on another blog, I almost expect sexism from some of the other members – not in a malicious way but that sort of baffled amusement “A woman! In the Pavilion!” but I’m not going to accept it from my club. I was as good as the men when they were taking my membership money, after all. Don’t let this put you off – they’ve caved to public opinion now and cancelled the girls. Good ridddance.

T*TS! Now that we’ve got your attention…. how about some cricket?

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