Hell with cricket, let’s play politics

Posted: January 23, 2010 in cricket
Tags: , , ,

Not a contrived attempt? They acted maturely? Do the IPL bosses actually expect us to believe that? And when we have to listen to a dumb Bollywood starlet, who couldn’t act to save her film career, mouthing such idiocies, it does get galling. And the more she shoots her mouth off, the deeper the hole she and her compatriots dig themselves into. Hopefully, by the time the next edition comes around, they’ll bury themselves completely, and we’ll be rid of this bastardized form of a great game.
But since it’s still on, what’s the real reason for not picking the Pakistanis? Not good enough? Didn’t like their nationalities? Didn’t like their religion? Didn’t like their beards? Didn’t like their names? Or were they planning to attack India with…. cricket bats and balls?
If they didn’t want to select the Pakistanis, the IPL bosses shouldn’t even have picked them in the original list of players up for auction. And even after they did, if one or two had been bought and the rest ignored, it would have looked a natural auctioning process. But ignoring all eleven? I don’t blame the Pakistan press for calling us a bunch of bigots. In the US and Australia you have racism and in India you have bigotry in the worst form – caste, gender religion and colour – which decides where you’ll be studying, staying or working, or who you’ll be marrying. But let’s stick with the IPL for now we’ll leave the rest for another day.
What’s the cricketing logic in keeping Shahid Afridi out? He is one of the best and most exciting one-day players in the world. Strange, that no player from the best T20 team in the world finds a place in the IPL.
Jingoism be damned, but who wants to watch a bunch of retired, semi-retired and some unknown faces huffing and puffing through 20 overs? I would much rather watch the likes of Afridi, Umar Gul, and the Akmal brothers than some Roach, Bond, Ganguly, Kaif, or a club class cricketer like Yousuf Pathan. Didn’t Bond retire from international cricket because of persistent injury problems? How is he fit to play now?
IPL was launched supposedly to bring the best cricketing talent in the world under one umbrella and have them perform together in different teams. The first edition was exciting because one suddenly saw Ponting, Sourav and Shoaib Akhtar playing together and Shane Warne leading an ‘Indian’ team. Secondly, it also gave a lot of cricketers some form of financial security. While some of these reasons still coexist, the excitement has worn off. We all know what happened during the last IPL in South Africa.
The moral of the story is that even money power isn’t enough to go against some of the unwritten diktats made by governments. Either the Government is telling the truth that they have nothing to do with IPL or the IPL bosses have mastered the fine art of bending over. They can go blue in the face denying any ulterior motive for not picking the Pakistanis, but not too many people believe them. I feel sorry for the Pakistani players – caught in the middle of a political war of nerves, not of their doing.
What the IPL bosses had been doing these past few years was bad enough – screwing the great game of cricket by selling it to the highest bidder. Now they are playing politics over it too.

  1. mehernaz says:

    In a way, isn’t it better that the Pakistani players were not picked now, rather than have them be picked and then sent back mid way through the tournament because of diplomatic relations?

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