Friday, April 29, 2005

Plaza closed down

Meet the fockers as it turned out was the last movie to be screened in Plaza.....Good I watched the last movie there and that too in the balcony

Wind taken out of the sails of the Windies

As I write this blog SA have won the toss and decided to bat and are 48-0 in 9 overs.

While I grew up even though WI were past their best and most feared team in the world status even about 10 years ago such scorelines were hard to imagine. I remember the WI batsmen as great back foot players ppl who would drive off the back foot since it gave them more time and also a chance to get under the ball to balls which were well pitched up. Richardson,Hooper, Simmons, Jimmy Adams are some names that come to mind. In fact from what I have read I like them even more...the best over ever bowled in test cricket by Holding to Boycott or the great spell by Andy Roberts in Chennai's chepauk stadium where Vishy scored an excellent 90 odd...Their greatness is testified by the fact that most batsmens would rate thier best innings whenever they scored well against Garner, Holding, Croft and Marshall.

Even though the present Windies team have a good line up in terms of batting with Hinds,Gayle,Sarwan,Lara C'Paul and Bravo its the bowling thats pathetic.

The enduring sight of the Windies to me will remain the 1994 test match. I think it was in Barbados where Waugh kept staring at Ambrose who was bowling an unplayable spell and kept beating Steves bat....Richardson had to literally drag him away to avoid him beating up Steve....Steve looked a midget in front of him..that was the sort of passion that they used to play with...
Walsh though less agressive was a bowler with a McGrath like accuracy and could work out a batsmen beautifully remember his spell in Mohali where he bowled them to a victory and broke Prabhakars nose in the bargain :)
But todays bowlers are really no real pace though fridel edwards has a bit but again no control..they are very harmless and lack any sort of penetration....As Geoffrey would say "Even my mum could score a 100 against them"....

Also what does not help them is the sort of dead pitches that they have started preparing...previously batsmen would look to a WI tour with some sort of trepidation since they would cop a few but now they lick their lips in anticipation of the flat pitches and the club level bowlers they will be facing...

All this is very sad to see since anyone who has watched the WI team of yore will know...Just spare a thought for what Lara or C'Paul would be feeling...Lara is the best batsman on the earth his 176 and 196 were the knocks of the season so far only to end up on the losing side each time...C'Paul another batsman with a lot of toughness having a fine record and yet losing time and again...

They must be feeling the nails in the coffin each time they have to play with the other team ammassing 600 odd runs or when they score 400 the other team getting free runs because of some wayward bowling....

And it seems that the WI are where England were about 4 years back but England always had a great county cricket frame work which meant that you would come across some one good player sooner rather than later..not so sure abt WI...I cant see them producing the Flintoffs or the Vaughans unless they become more professional in their play on the field..the youngsters not throwing their wicket away the bowlers bowling accurately if not incisively...

As Lara and C'Paul would tell ya Cricket can be a very cruel game sometimes.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Match ka Mujarim

I watched the series finale yesterday. India lost the match even though the target was stiff, the pitch was still playing true though some balls were keeping low, and we had the second best batting line up in the world (or so dada claims).

But what made the day entertaining was this program that I watched on Star News later yesterday night. Had a very corny name "Match ka Mujarim". Interesting name is all I would say. The public was furious and there were three panelists Zaheer Abbas the great Pakistaani batsman, Kirmani one of Indias finest keepers and the chairman of selectors and Bishan Singh Bedi probably Indias best left arm spinner and known to be a guy who is very anti BCCI.

It was sad to see so many fans cribbing so much about the team. I mean as Kirmani kept saying that winning and losing keep happening, the public came up with some stupid questions like "Does Sachin think hes bigger than the team ?" Does anyone in India even have any indication of the pressure that he goes through each time he bats. He has played exceedingly well till about the past couple of years when he has changed his game and mellowed down. A phenomenal player to say the least, one only needs to look at Lara to realise what can happen when the pressure gets to you.

On the other hand people keep questioning the players doing ads. Are they plain jealous or what ? I accept the fact that they are probably overpaid considering the recent performances but why are they handed out such lucrative contracts, precisely for the reason that the same public idolises them, if they stop doing that then they wouldnt get such obscenely huge amounts of money. We have had people like Geet Sethi 7 times world champion or Pankaj Advani, Gopichand, Jaspal Rana the list goes on but we dont see them in any ads why coz the public aint interested in them but on the other hand Sania Mirza who hasnt won any major tournament (same thing can be said of the Indian cricket team) is the talk of the town one only needs to read Times of India to know that, bloody ell I have her face smiling down on me from numersous billboards. My point being that unless we stop worshipping these cricketers they will keep getting such ads.

And finally Indians are by nature not a nation that takes to sports actively. Not too many guys in school play any game at even a semi serious level, gali cricket not withstanding. Anyone who has played any game at even a club level knows that there are sometimes when things just dont turn out the way you want them to, and you win some and loose some. Even if you have the best strategy things can go horribly worng and theres nothing you can do about it. You lose, you cop it on the shoulder and go on with life, no point in doing the analysis that the numerous cricket shown on all the news channels with players who have mostly failed to do anything of note at the international level do. If its constructive its probably still ok but some of the jokers are just unbearable. So all the public at the star news show I think were just playing to the gallery its bloody become a movie show, Bedi sometime in the show said "The cricket team Should stop playing with the emotions of the indian public" if our emotions depend on the cricket teams performance then all I can say is "Dude get a life"

"If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;"

Kipling "If"