It is Football final series - AFL and NFL - the Rugby World Cup - the Hockey finals - and whoever else - we can voucher that winners are grinners.
The Cricket Ashes series in the old dart illustrated this – the Australians retained the Ashes by their 4th Test win - then the 5th Test became a ‘dead rubber’. The Ashes had been retained and the Aussies were grinners.
Former Australian Baggy Green captain Steve Smith who had been suspended for 12 months for allowing ball tampering in South Africa last year - was a grinner with his 200 plus runs in that 4th Test and Man of the March and a lot more besides.
Winners are grinners is a well trod path - every footy grand final victory demonstrates this highly visible experience, but there is another side to this. For every winner there necessarily needs to be not just one loser, but many loses through the entire season of competition.
Children’s sports are very important in this regard - they play their competitive sport activities whether that be things like tunnel ball, or soccer, or cricket, or the athletics or swimming carnival and for every winner that are also-rans.
Children need to learn how to handle victory and not being a winner - and ‘not being a winner’ will be their vast experience growing up. It is the experience that counts for their expanding lives taking in a wide variety of life’s lessons.
Sport is one of these, where there will be occasions - ‘winners are grinners’ - and where - ‘not being a winner’ - takes nothing away from who they are as a person. That is far more important and families play crucial roles in this.
I am involved in a three year program “Dads and their sons” - we ensure our three sons are truly valued in whatever we engage in - this way grinners are winners - for being valued and loved.
Josh Hinds is a school chaplain and an experienced international sport writer, now in his 9th year as a Christian Today sport writer.