A while ago now I wrote about how the terminology of sports can affect our perceptions of the genders involved with participating in it. My regular boardgames group and I frequently discuss (‘righteously rage at’ might be a better description) games instructions which use exclusively ‘he’ and ‘him’ to describe player actions. Some are wising up to this now and using a mixture of pronouns (though rarely ‘they’), although there is still much ground to cover.
It was heartening, then, when this week I read an article on the new Laws of cricket, coming into force this October. Much to my surprise and delight, around halfway through there was an announcement that gendered terms such as he and him are also to be removed from these. It’s a shame that they didn’t go further, and remove terms like batsman and third man, but it’s at least a progressive step in making the sport more inclusive and welcoming to people of all genders.