Category: Cricket

Pakistan Cricket Board and cricketers

On 10/3/2010 PCB imposed bans and fines on seven cricketers: Mohammed Yusuf, Younis Khan, Shoaib Malik, Rana Naved, Shahid Afridi, Kamran Akmal and Umar Akmal. This followed Pakistan’s disastrous tour of Australia. During the tour Pakistan’s performance was poor and it appeared some players did their level best to lose the matches.
Was there match-fixing? ICC anti-corruption unit was present during the tour but that doesn’t mean much.
Did the players lose the matches because they did not like each other? Was there groupism? Whatever be the reasons the players had to be disciplined and PCB acted.
Some former players have expressed shock against actions cricketers saying there should no ban for poor performance. The actions of players show it was more than poor performance. It was sabotage. Action against Shahid Afridi may not have anything to do with ball tampering as ICC had acted against him.
CNN-IBN conducted a poll “Is Pakistani cricket team the most mismanaged in the world?” and 90% voted yes, 10% no.
Disagreements between players are not new in Test cricket. When disagreements result in losses that is a matter for concern and people in authority need to act and that is what PCB has done.

Link to e-book King – a novel: http://go4quiz.com/vincent/king

Film and the city

On 12/2/2010 the film My name is Khan opened for show in a few theatres at noon in Bombay. After two hours more theatres had opened and by night it was business as usual.
The film’s release was hanging in balance for the past two weeks. Shiv Sena had demanded apology from Shah Rukh Khan for his statement that Pakistani players should have been selected for IPL 3. If no apology they will not allow the film to be shown in Bombay. They had also said Bombay belongs to Marathi people and had criticised anyone who said Bombay belongs to all Indians. They had dared Rahul Gandhi to visit Bombay. If he came he will be shown black flags. Rahul Gandhi visited Bombay and travelled by local trains. Black flag demonstrators were arrested. Next day Shah Rukh Khan returned from abroad. He was given security from airport to home. Shiv Sena was dejected and would have given up the boycott. Sharad Pawar visited Bal Thackeray and that gave a boost to Shiv Sena which renewed the threat to boycott the film. They sent letters to theatre owners not to show the film.
Ashok Chavan, Chief Minister of Maharashtra, assured security to theatres. Karan Johar met Police Commissioner. Meeting was held with theatre owners. Then came many twists. Sometimes theatre owners said they will not show the film. One person said the atmosphere has to be conducive. There were reports of opening and cancelling of bookings. More than 2,000 Shiv Sainiks were arrested. Shah Rukh Khan went to Abu Dhabi and Berlin. On the night of 11/2/2010 it seemed the film may not be released in the city. Ashok Chavan looked dejected. We have given security. Our job is to maintain law and order. Showing films was upto theatre owners. That was his statement.
The film was to be shown in 63 theatres in Bombay. Shiv Sena had claimed victory in its newspaper. There were no morning shows. The battle was between mobocracy and democracy. The battle between Shiv Sena and State had got personal.
The tide turned at noon. Some theatres started the show. Sanjay Nirupam, Congress MP, went to one theatre. Raosaheb Patil, Home Minsiter of Maharashtra, went to another theatre. Kabir Bedi and Pooja Bedi wanted to see the film but did not get the tickets as it was house full.
What went behind the scenes will be known in due course. What made Raosaheb Patel to go to a theatre? There was no report of Ashok Chavan going to any theatre. Shiv Sena had said there is a mass movement against the film. They had initiated the protest. There was no sign of mass movement against the film. Theatres were house full.
For the first time in Maharashtra a film was given protection against widespread threats and theatre owners showed the film. Previously at the hint of any trouble the film affected was banned by the government or theatre owners stopped the film shows. Sometimes producers or actors bowed to the demands of trouble makers.
When there was trouble regarding Wake up Sid, Karan Johar had gone to meet Raj Thackeray and bowed to his demands. That time Ashok Chavan had said if there is any trouble people should come to me. Raj Thackeray had said who is he that people should go to him. This time Ashok Chavan demonstrated the power of the state government.
Link to e-book King – a novel: http://go4quiz.com/vincent/king

India Loses Nagpur Test

India lost Nagpur Test by an Innings and 6 runs on 9/2/2010, fourth day of the Test. India’s Test ranking is No. 1 and South Africa’s No. 2.
As per original tour programme South Africa was to play seven ODIs. India defeated Sri Lanka in Tests at the end of 2009 and attained No. 1 ranking in Tests. India wanted a change in the series to retain its No. 1 status and the series was changed to two Tests and five ODIs.
India had a series in Bangladesh and won two Tests. Sreesanth, VVS Laxman, Rahul Dravid and Yuvraj Singh got injured.
India’s bowling and fielding was poor and batting was average. Dropped catches allowed South Africa to declare at 558/6. Ishant Sharma and Amit Misra did not get any wicket in spite of conceding 85 and 140 runs respectively.
South Africa was good in batting, bowling and its fielding could have been better. Dale Steyn’s bowling was outstanding. In India’s second Innings Sachin Tendulkar was dropped when he was 45 and he scored 100, his 46th Test century.
It was Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s 12th Test as captain and first loss. There are times for a captain when everything goes right and he keeps winning. Then comes a time when everything goes wrong and he keeps losing. I am reminded of Ajit Wadekar. He defeated West Indies in West Indies in 1971. West Indies’ fielding was poor. In England when India was to lose two Tests rain interrupted and the Tests ended in draw. India won the third Test at Oval. India won the 1972-1973 series against England in India. In 1974 India was in England lost all three Tests. In the second by an Innings and 265 runs. In the second Innings India was all out for 42. In the third Test England lost only two wickets. India lost the Test by an Innings and 78 runs. Mahendra Singh Dhoni had smooth sailing for most of the time. He won Twenty20 World Cup in 2007. After he became Test captain the Tests were won or draw. Now he has tasted defeat.
Selection committee has reacted by dropping three players, two of whom did not play the Test. This committee is supposed to be professional but nothing seems to have changed.
Link to e-book King – a novel: http://go4quiz.com/vincent/king