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Friday, April 23, 2010

The Funny Game Called Cricket

Team Being Cynical
You might have heard this phrase from thousands of cricket commentators for million of times. Commentators, those who have played cricket at the highest level and lesser mortals like me who have hold the bat not more that 3-4 times in their life would also agree to this saying of cricket being funny when it comes to the nature of the game and the outcome of it also. Hang on, to me the fun or the funniness doesn't necessarily stops there. For me the outcome was never funny. It goes much beyond just the outcome of the game. Bangladesh thrashing West indies out of nowhere, is definitely not funny. Ask any fan from the Caribbeans.

For me the whole game along with the notorious jargon were always funny, much more than the outcome. Cricket is the only game I feel which has got the logic flying out of the window when it comes to naming convention. Few say Newton might have committed suicide after seeing the whole funda of logic getting screwed up big time by these cricket walas.

To begin with, the guy seen behind the stumps with the kid's size pads and those gloves having a striking similarity with the palms of a Siberian Crain and yelling Sabas-Sabas at the drop of a hat is known as the wicket keeper. But the poor chap is seen breaking those wickets every now and then without any reason, for which he was employed as a keeper at the first place. Wicket breaker would have been a better name, I feel. And why those 2-3 useless chaps seen standing alongside the keeper are called sleeps? Does that position designated for anyone who wants to take a quick power nap during the course of the game? It's Slips you fool, informed someone. Ohh is it? What they are supposed to slip there? Aren't they are positioned to gulp down everything that's comes their way rather than slipping? No wonder our slip fielders have taken the word too laterally.

In cricket you won't find a 1st man or 2nd man but you will always find a third man. Where are the other two? As if Cover, Short Cover, Square Cover, Sweeper Cover are not enough you would always find an Extra Cover. The covers increases few folds when guys like Sachin is at the crease, who is famous for his trademark cover drive. Left-hand drive, right-hand drive but cover drive? is it something like covering yourself with one of those Sherlock Homes look alike rain coats while driving? Isn't it strange to see a guy like Jontey Rhodes covering 10 meters on both sides of his but end up having a name for his position as Point. Just a point? Guys up there need to go through the high school geometry books again. You can't call something with 10 meters radius as a point.

Short leg has two variants. Both forward and backward (under privileged like backward classes). Initially I had an impression that the height of those who stand near the batsman with the crash helmet has got something to do with their name: 'forward short leg'. You ought to have a pair of very short legs or in simple understandable words, you need to be a Nata to occupy that position. The backward short leg guy has more or less the same qualifying criteria but only thing missing is the crash helmet and he must be from OBC or SC & ST. Point has a backward variety. I wonder what that guy is supposed to do when you have point as big as a 10 meter radius circle like Jhonty. The only fielding position that carry some sense is Silly Point. What else you would call a guy who has the audacity to stand as close as just 3 meters from a beast like Mathew Hayden. You definitely need to be a silly to exercise that adventure.

Not only the namings but the actions are quite confusing as well. The chaps known as Umpires are supposed to be the boss out there but generally end up being one mobile wall hanger each. These guys are the most active among the lot present in the park. Along with officiating they get engaged with all the physical exercise as shown in some fitness programmes early morning. For sometime I had an impression that wide is actually a double No ball. With the introduction of new variations like free hit, power plays and time out, the signals are becoming ever confusing and guys like Billy Bowden are not helping the cause either. Signaling a four looks same as Mithun Chakaroverty or Rajnikant slapping few rowdies some thousand times per minute in a single go. Signaling a six as if you trying to make two huge holes up there in the heaven for the rain water to pour down. Still couldn't comprehend that Nataraj pose to sign a leg bye. I initially felt pity on the umpire for getting hit and limping in the process.

Authorities are making the game more funnier of late. One certain Lalit Modi along with another Sashi Tharoor increased the fun few folds. Nobody knows what could be the next move and outcome with almost half of the world involved in the latest scam hitting this funny game. Much same like all those Jehadi groups. Al-Quida one day and LET or JUD the other day. Nobody knows what they would be one tomorrow, not even their mothers. Fun or no fun, this funny game has made millions glued to the TV set, road side play grounds, community parks. You just need few guys playing this game with some seriousness and there goes few chaps standing on the so called boundary lines watching it. Doesn't necessarily need one Yuvraj Sing always to bring in the crowds. Down the street Kaluram is not a bad batsman when it comes to hitting few sixes. We just need some serious cricket at any level to generate a funny outcome.

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