Cricket at its best or worst?

You could not ask for two more contrasting cricket series than the ones we've witnessed in the past month or so.

India v Australia are two sides that can't stand each other. The result has been controversy, sledging, allegations of cheating, foul-mouthed rants caught on camera - but all unmissable sporting theatre.

Contrast that with New Zealand v South Africa, which was living proof the spirit of cricket is alive and well. These are two sides who would share a beer and probably pay for it as well.


Apart from Morne Morkel's send-off to Jeet Raval in the third test, I can't remember another moment in the series that carried any semblance of angst.

After India won their series 2-1, Aussie captain Steve Smith apologised for letting his emotions get to him.

Viral Kohli responded by saying he'd never be friends with the Aussies, let alone have a beer with them.

The All Blacks have a famous "no dickheads" policy. You could argue the Australian cricket team takes the opposite approach.

So how did the cricketing world react? Was Australia v India a good or bad look for the image of cricket at a time when this issue continues to be hotly debated?

Here's a taste of the way the world's leading players and commentators answered that question.

David Lloyd, the affable Englishman, wrote, "cracking series out of India".

Former Australian batsman Dean Jones: "Gee, I hope the Ashes will be as keenly fought as this one."

The great Sri Lankan batsman Mahela Jayawardene: "End of a very good series, credit to both sides for playing magnificent cricket."

Shane Warne: "Congrats to India on a wonderful series win. It was a great series to watch."

Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir: "True champions let their game do all the talking."

Yes, there will be those who dislike the way these two sides behaved. The petulance, the return of outright sledging at a time when many want a return to the gentleman's game - whatever that term in cricket actually means.

But you can't tell me it wasn't enthralling to watch.

Ponder this - which series will you remember the most, that one in India or our boys at home?​