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Declaring war on SA, BCCI style

Declaring war on  SA, BCCI style
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Highlights

George Bush did not like Saddam Hussein. So he went for an illegal war against Iraq which devastated that country. President Barack Obama, in the disguise of a Peacenik, did not like President Assad and was all set to launch a ‘limited war’ against Syria which would cause extensive damage. American Presidents control huge wealth and immense power.

George Bush did not like Saddam Hussein. So he went for an illegal war against Iraq which devastated that country. President Barack Obama, in the disguise of a Peacenik, did not like President Assad and was all set to launch a ‘limited war’ against Syria which would cause extensive damage. American Presidents control huge wealth and immense power.

They want to dominate the world. If some nations object, the US would smash them, thereby proving the dictum that it is never the meek but the strongest bully who would inherit the world. The US, which initiated the Monroe Doctrine, now thrives on the Bush-Obama doctrine. This doctrine is followed all over the world, with bullies of all kinds exerting pressure on non-bullies.

India is no exception. Its Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI’s) ‘tottering’ (there is no other way to describe him) president K.Srini suddenly announced that the Indian cricket team’s long-awaited tour of world Test champions, South Africa, would be severely curtailed. No reasons were given; and in yet another decision, the BCCI announced that the much-weaker West Indies would undertake a short tour of India. Very soon India would play a home series against the Windies, an away-series against New Zealand though nothing was mentioned against the South Africa tour. Sections of the media reported that India could only afford to spend 25 days for this truncated tour, if ever that took place

This was a bitter blow for cricket lovers who were anticipating a keen series against the World Champions. Will the much-vaunted Indian batting be able to stand up to the deadly pace attack of Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Philander on pitches tailor-made for pace bowling? Normally, our slow-turner batting ‘champions’ like Suresh Raina, ducked, weaved and tried to run away to escape the searing bouncers and swinging, seaming balls. Since India, playing at home and fattened themselves on local conditions, was not all that keen to play in South Africa the length of the tour was curtailed without even informing the hosts.
The once-great West Indians were highly inconsistent and vulnerable against our ‘famed’ spin attack. For them, the Indian tour was an unexpected bonanza and they readily agreed because their own coffers were empty. The Windies were ready lambs for the slaughter, that too for a ‘noble’ cause which was Sachin Tendulkar’s 200th Test match. Since Indian cricket for long has run on the whims and fancies of Sachin and his pals in the media, this event should not be held in South Africa where he could fail against Steyn and Co.
The hush-hush curtailment of the South African tour and the introduction of a visit from the West Indians came as a bombshell. It was not clear if the BCCI had made the arrangements deliberately to avert humiliation for the Indian heroes, or Sachin Tendulkar hinted he would like his 200th test on Indian soil. Over the years, Sachin had manipulated selection norms, picking and choosing his one dayers and occasionally Test matches. Had the West Indian tamasha series not been introduced, an out- of-practice Sachin would have had to face Steyn and Co and the results could well be imagined.
To make Sachin’s job easier, the BCCI should have approached the Zimbabwe cricket team to tour India, promising them a hefty bonus if Sachin managed one more century in his 200th Test. The BCCI is now embroiled in a controversy about the venue of the 200th Test, with both Mumbai and Kolkata vying for it. The former is Sachin’s home town but Eden Gardens, as the biggest stadium in the world, is ideal for the grand finale. Since Sachin belongs to the entire nation, the five-day Test match be split among Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore and Delhi with each centre holding one day’s game. This would satisfy everyone and also boost the collection.
The media in the meantime has freely speculated that the South African tour was curtailed because the BCCI wanted to teach a lesson to Haroon Lorgat, head of South African cricket, due to some past misunderstandings. Indian Cricket Board tried its best to stop Lorgat from heading the South African Board but failed. That rankled. South Africa must be taught a lesson; it must be rendered penniless following a curtailed tour. BCCI’s money power and arm-twisting in international cricket are well known and this is one more example. Obama used this arm twisting (cutting off economic and military aid) to bring opponents of his policies to fall in line and the BCCI has done the same.
What a sad state of affairs to have a noble game, embroiled in corruption charges and IPL scandals, run by money power! Even more astonishing is the acceptance of this situation by the rest of the cricket-playing nations which have become mere puppets. Which is more important, cricket or national honour? Why didn’t England, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa refuse to succumb to BCCI bullying even if that meant doing away with international cricket for some time? This is an ideal time to expose BCCI manipulations. But that will not happen. The England Cricket Board has already announced that its cricket season would now start not from May but from June so that the notorious IPL could have an unfettered run.
Player power should have its limitations. Sachin Tendulkar or, for that matter, any other player should not decide how, when and where they would play and that the BCCI should organize future tours so that he can add to his run tally. Great players like Sir Donald Bradman, Sir Gary Sobers or Sir Jack Hobbs never manipulated the game to this extent. To its eternal shame, the Indian cricket media is partly responsible for this state of affairs, projecting Sachin as a demi-god, elevating a player even above the game.
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