Clare Connor: Future MCC president 'not at all surprised' by reaction to 'batter' term

According to the MCC, the transition to "batter" is a natural step.
Clare Connor is the managing director of women’s cricket at England and Wales Cricket Board. She says that she is not surprised about the negative reaction to the gender-neutral term batter’ replacing batsman’ in cricket's laws.

Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), announced that the changes would take effect immediately and acknowledged the "changing landscape" of the game.

"People who don't empathise or understand the backlash are coming from people who don’t get it." It's not surprising," stated Connor, who will be the MCC president on Friday.

Connor was speaking on BBC World Service’s Stumped podcast. He said: "The main reason I'm surprised is that keepers of thatlanguage have, in general, been men who were privileged in terms their access to that game and their opportunities within the game.

"Everybody has the right to their opinions, but it's very difficult for people to see and understand what it feels like to be excluded, included, or part of something until they have walked in the shoes of someone who doesn't feel welcome, or included, or part of anything."

"Language has a lot of power, especially in sport. It shouldn't be denied to anyone."

"Where is the game now? An eight-year old girl doesn't want a batsman or a policeman or a postman or fireman. Why would she want anything with the word man in it?"

It is a good step, it signals intent. They were aware of the backlash but knew it was the right decision as it was another step in the game's progress.

"Absolutely the right choice to cancel Pakistan tour"

Connor, the managing director of women’s cricket at ECB was involved in the decision not to cancel the England men’s and women’s tours to Pakistan in Oct.

After New Zealand men withdrew mid-tour from Pakistan due to a "specific, credible threat", the ECB's external-link statement did not mention security but mental fatigue.

The statement did not mention the women's team. Captain Heather Knight stated that the decision was taken externally-link and "above our heads".

Connor however claims that the decision was made by the players.

"There were many conversations and lots of discussions with the players, regardless of whether they were in formal minutes consultation meetings or informal conversations about the changing situation last weekend," stated Connor.

"The board had all the information they needed to make a decision. There was an urgency, especially with the T20 World Cup men's team and the logistical side.

"The board made a strong decision that I believe was absolutely right at the time.

"It is unbelieveable for the progress that was made and the return to Pakistan of the game."