Most high profile sports men and women have all on trying to keep their off the field profile in tip top condition.
Today's expectations for senior sports men and women to act as social role models are ever increasing, as Britain's youth culture grows further out of control.
As a result there's nothing more appealing to the British media than a scandal involving a sports personality caught with their proverbial pants down – behaving badly in public or being politically incorrect.
There have been so many sporting personalities brought down to earth over the years after a camera captured a moment of madness that the prospect of being caught in such a predicament must put the fear of God into most professional athletes.
You would then conclude that a high profile athlete who behaved in a highly incriminating manner, took photos of it, made personal statements on it, then personally publicised it for the whole world to see is a complete lunatic.
This, however, was the case for two of Britain's most promising junior tennis players – Britain's No 2 ranked boy, 18-year-old David Rice 18, and Naomi Broady, the under-18 national champion.
The two young tennis players have been severely disciplined by the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) for "unprofessional behaviour" and "a lack of discipline" after their controversial photos and confessions on the Bebo social networking website were deemed to be a breach of their LTA contracts.
Teen-attracting websites like bebo, myspace and facebook are where individuals create their own personal profile in cyber space – posting pictures, music and blogs – with the aim of building an online profile of themselves for the entire world to see.
Unfortunately for our budding young tennis players a tiny portion of that world happened to include some angry little officials from the LTA, who pump thousands of pounds worth of funding every year into up-and-coming tennis players like David and Naomi.
Naomi's bebo profile showed her on the town, with her legs wrapped round a toilet vending machine, and also stated that she has broken the law, drinks, smokes and hates hangovers.
David's profile gave a visual and verbal account of him enjoying a can of beer or two while openly admitting to being happiest when with the boys partying and chilling.
The LTA felt it necessary to suspend the two players, withdraw their funding and coaching and issue public statements like: "They've either got to behave like professional athletes or go and do something else."
Personally I think if Sylvester Stallone were to make a sequel to his 80's arm-wrestling hit, Over The Top, the LTA would be favourites to direct it.
I'm in no way condoning the actions of the tennis players but, given their age and experience, it seems a little harsh.
Professional conduct is a part of professional development. Just as these young people are coached the skills involved in the participation of their sport they should also be taught how to deal with the dangers and temptations that teenage sports men and women are, inevitably, going to be exposed to.
It's no good allowing it to get to this stage and then dealing with it by making a "shock and awe" example of the youngster in an effort to dissuade others from falling into the same trap.
The fact that these youngsters thought this behaviour was acceptable in the first place tells me that the LTA has a poor or no policy in social development – making it even more likely that David and Naomi lack the capacity to deal with such an elevated backlash.
Maybe the LTA could start advising the England Cricket Board after some recent bad press for cricketing role models who "really should" know better.****
AFTER the recent excitement of the 20/20 competition, I thinks it's time to get out of my comfort zone and talk about some good old cricket.
My own view is that, like anything competitive, cricket is a great game to play. Fortunately though, any cricket that I'm ever going to play is never going to last more than a few hours – just long enough to keep my aggression and enthusiasm going.
Watching any format other than the Twenty20 however, is like listening to fishing on the radio.
Playing for the Rhinos means that I share a sporting venue with the Yorkshire county cricket team.
It's not the fact that they get priority over the changing rooms (probably due to time) when our fixtures coincide that puts me off, it's the long buffet of toast, food and cooking facilities blocking the tunnel.
I remember turning up to play a Super League game at Headingley Carnegie just as one of the Yorkshire players was bowled out. I walked a few yards behind him down the tunnel, past the changing rooms where I thought – out of the public view – he would throw his helmet at the wall then smash his bat to pieces. Instead he went about brewing up a cup of tea and toasting up a spread of Bovril.
Let's then forget the long-winded, tedious cricket and stick to a real game like Twenty20. The quick turnaround and trigger-happy mentality, to me, makes this a much better game.
The recent success and packed grounds for the Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa has sparked a few debates as to whether the competition's success could put the longer 50-over form of cricket into doubt.
Reading through some public opinion I have found mixed reactions. One fellow in opposition asked: "How can a game that is nothing but hit and giggle replace 50-over cricket?"
Going on the typical crowd we get at Headingley, I'm not sure if by "50-over" he's referring to overs to be bowled or years of age of the spectators.
Either way Twenty20 has attracted at least one extra fan and come the 2009 Twenty20 World Cup in England, The Headingley shop will have sold at least one extra England and a provisional West Indies shirt.