Friday, May 02, 2008

The Cricketainment!!!

In last week, the three of India’s fab-four showed some form. If Dravid played a classy but short lived innings against Chennai Super Kings, Laxman played a typical “play outside off stump ball in the region covering third man to fine leg” innings. Ganguly played a fighting but a little scratchy innings against a “not so great but helped by the pressure of big score” bowling of Rajasthan Royals.

All three innings could be connected with more than one string. All three innings had typical elements of each individual’s brilliance which has given us an orgasmic pleasure over the years. All of them were more than run a ball innings by some margin but none of them could be considered to be slogs. Sadly, all three ended in a loosing cause. What they provided was the brilliance of traditional batting mixed with modern innovation. What they lacked probably was the necessity of modern cricket especially in t20 – the running between the wickets at express pace, conversion of non existent runs into reality and demolition skills backed by insane cricketing/non cricketing shots. But their success did show that a good player can adjust to any form of cricket even with conventional methods. Their failure to win the match showed that you don’t only need the cricketing skills in modern cricket. You also need fitness to run fast, muscle power to belt the ball into stadium every second over and a little disrespect to coaching manuals. May be they are the last generation of Indian greats who preferred to hit a ball for a four because they had the brilliance and play out the next few balls in the over rather than have a run a ball over. New generation seems to be better in the latter part but do they have it in them to claim a laudable replacement is what needs to be seen.

Let me confess, I started as a hardcore anti-IPL. But once the tournament started, it did develop some amount of interest in me. But finally, I got bored yesterday. I slept off without any intentions in the first match and intentionally went to sleep during the second match. The abundance of quantity of cricket and lack of quality in terms of balance between bat and ball in t20 bored me finally. Mind you, IPL is just 33% over. 67% is yet to go.

Now tell me, one of the reasons why WC07 was considered as a failure was sighted as the length of the tournament which was close to two months. T20 WC in South Africa was a success not only because it was well organized (that is what the reports say) but also for coming as a short & sweet dose of a new medicine. Within 15 days we had seen a tournament which was for the shortest version of the game. On contrary, IPL is the Karmayuddha for 59 matches lasting 44 days. Isn’t it ironical for a tournament of the shortest version of the game to last for close to a month and half? I am talking from the perspective of the television viewer ship because that is what gets the actual revenues. How long one can see the same kind of cricket where the bowlers are no better than a helpless preys, batsmen are heavily loaded predators, the broadcaster is MAX which works on the principles of maximizing the Ads per square inch even during the match, the presentors’s quality is such that they cant even remember the teams that are playing in the match, instead of listening to comments of cricket you get to listen special comments on Imran Hasmi’s kissing skills, you see Lalit Modi on screen every 5 minutes with the comments from commentators “He must be mighty pleased with the success of the IPL” right form the first match and commentator do not fail to mention how the crowd is having a ball in full stands even if the camera is showing the moon?

If one is trying to popularize a new format, isn’t it more logical for him to give small doses so that the buyers’ interest is turned into addiction and than make merry? Or should he start overdosing from day one telling him it’s a hit? Like every other thing in life, it’s a trade off. You assume that a purist will stick to you hence you can feed him with a lower quality product to fetch the new customers. Or dilute the quality from purist’s side and venture in the new domain. You returns may not be that lucrative but assumptions are also likely to be less risky. Yeah, quality is subjected to purist’s perception of events.


Spiff said...

Dude..u got bored cos thts all u did for the last 2 weeks...normal ppl wud hv started noticing IPL now..

u also relax and think abt non cricketing issues for a while

Vibhash Prakash Awasthi said...

the way its been thrown upon u in need to be abnormal to not have noticed it till now.