Michael Clarke backs Twitter
Michael Clarke, Australia's stand-in cricket captain, has vowed to keep on tweeting despite getting some heat this week over the content of his updates.
Clarke has had a rough summer with fans and journalists getting on his back over his poor run of form with the bat and it seems even his efforts to promote the game and engage cricket fans are coming back to bite him on the backside.
The posts that have caused all the fuss related to some team banter about finding all-rounder Steve Smith a date for the Allan Border Medal dinner.
"Have had a great response for @stevesmith49 AB medal date… it will be his choice. I will pass all tweets onto him," he posted last week.
Some commentators weren't too impressed about his public match-making efforts. Daily Telegraph columnist Ben Dorries, for example, wrote: "Surely Clarke has more pressing matters to worry about. What about scoring a few runs and captaining his side through times of turmoil?"
But despite all the negativity, Clarke remains a fan of Twitter and plans to keep using the social media platform to keep in contact with his 80,000 followers.
He told Dorries to "take a chill pill" in a recent post and told reporters today that he had no plans to take a step back from Twitter.
Let's hope that is indeed the case, as it's now been a couple of days since his last update. Clarke is one of a small number of major sports stars who use Twitter to speak candidly and directly to their fans. If he's gagged as a result of recent events, his followers would have to settle for the sanitised press conference clichés that do little more than help cure insomnia.
Michael Clarke's 80,000 followers make him one of the most popular Aussie cricket stars on Twitter, but he has some way to go before he catches legendary spin bowler Shane Warne…
Shane Warne (@warne888) – 307,111 followers
Michael Clarke (@mclarke23) – 81,585 followers
Damien Martyn (@dmartyn30) – 25,767 followers
Phil Hughes (@PH408) – 17,141 followers
Steve Smith (@stevesmith49) – 9,138 followers
Adam Gilchrist (@gillyashes) – 2,701 followers