You can see why Sir Viv Richards might have been a little bothered. With the ground bearing his name being deemed unfit for cricket, it’s a small wonder that the white-hot ferocity of his fury didn’t melt the sandy outfield into a sheet of glass.

The King Cricket name may be a byword for inane, delusional shod, but that’s a reputation that we’ve carefully cultivated and nurtured ourself. It’s taken a strict regime of bare minimum effort and of doing, at most, half a job, whatever the task. The Vivian Richards name, however, has had ineptitude foisted upon it. His name doesn’t deserve to be associated with such incompetence.

Viv Richards was an exceptional cricketer. He put a good deal of effort into making his name into something. He prepared, he practised and he went out of his way to present a certain image of himself. He conveyed this image so successfully that it’s a little-known fact that no one has ever managed to write more than 50 words about Viv Richards without using the word ‘swagger’ at least once.

To create this image; to give his name such status, Viv barely put a foot wrong. Any display of vulnerability would have unravelled all the work, so he never backed down and he made sure that he retained his aura. Naming a ground after him was meant to be an honour, but the upshot is that his name has been appropriated by others and associated with failure. He must wish that he’d kept it to himself.

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