McLaren driver Oscar Piastri believes that the English have been on the wrong side of ‘spirit of cricket’ moments themselves on a number of occasions and asked them not to sulk about a defining moment in the second Ashes Test match.
Piastri was asked by reporters how he felt about his compatriot Alex Carey running England’s Jonny Bairstow out in controversial manner in what turned out to be a match-defining moment.
As far as cricketing law is concerned, Carey did nothing wrong in running Bairstow out, who had ambled outside his crease after playing and missing a delivery.
However, it was not the most common modes of dismissal and left a bad taste for many English players and spectators at the venue.
English captain Ben Stokes himself said that he would never do such a thing himself and that it “wasn’t the way” he would choose to win a match as he believed the ball was ‘dead’.
Stokes made a valiant 155 and almost swung the match England’s way, but his dismissal meant that there was far too much work to do for an elongated tail as Australia clinched victory and moved 2-0 up in the 5-match series.
While many believe that Carey’s run out has tainted the nature of the win, Piastri sees no fault in what the Aussie wicketkeeper did.
“It’s obviously a controversial moment,” Piastri said. “I think in the laws of the game, the umpires decided it was out.
“There’s there’s always moments like that for and against. I remember England and [Stuart]. Broad in particular had their fair share of spirit of cricket moments too.
“It’s always a controversial topic for every team. But yeah, the umpires decided it was out. So we’ll move on to the next game and see what happens.”
These comments are unlikely to go down too well with English supporters, but Piastri is hopeful he gets some support in Silverstone by virtue of driving for McLaren.
“I might have to get a few more security guards! But that should be all good,” he said.
“I’m with a British team so hopefully there’s at least a couple of people supporting me there.”
Piastri’s teammate Lando Norris enjoyed a positive outing in UAstria and claimed a P4 after a post-race penalty was awarded to Carlos Sainz.
Piastri is hopeful that he can also make the most of the McLaren upgrades and put on a strong performance this weekend.
“We’ll have to see,” Piastri said. “I think we performed very well in Austria, on Lando’s side in particular. I think the pace, even my car with with the old package, was very good over one lap.
“I think it struggled a bit in the race, like we have seen in some of the other races. So yeah, I’m hoping it’s a good step forward.
“We’ll have to see if we can continue that pace. I think obviously Mercedes and Aston [Martin] had probably a weaker weekend than we expected.
“So we’ll have to see where we’re getting closer to that fight with with those kinds of teams, but we’ll have to see if we can do consistently.”