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Posts Tagged ‘Cricket’

The birth place of cricket has long moved away from its appreciation of the sport en masse, and taken football by its all extensions. With that has come a surge of millionaires and idols.

The cricketers have been relegated to a second class status and are subject to criticism for the slightest drop in standards – it is also amazing how the configuration of the team changes every few months – almost seeming like a trial and error game. But when it comes to football – the national sport – fortunes change and millions are made, stories of ‘rags to riches’ are told. PR Gurus work hard to groom raw talents with social skills to carry them forward, the media make heroes over night, the clubs get into bidding wars and suddenly every kid in town has a new ‘idol’!

Professional WAG

With fame comes money and then comes attitude – arrogance and a feeling of ‘untouchability’. The zipper seems to get the first knock – and as if a malfunction, often finds it hard to keep up in place! But then fame and infidelity have long been great friends and partners in many upsets, heartbreaks and ‘sudden deaths’ – we saw the Tiger come out of the Woods (so smooth – we thought he couldn’t even break wind)!

The ex-partner. Trophy indeed!

Our much groomed boys then hunt their trophy partners, some get the real ones while the others tag on to fading lingerie models. Either way the media love them, till one day somebody finds out more. They are still loved though – where would the tabloids go without them?

But hang on.

All that is said before is part of our lives till a footballer decides to dump their partner for good AND his best friend (married or not is not MY problem) finds access to the much tormented ex-partner and consoles her into her ‘drawers’. The world falls apart – Celebrity footballer sleeps with best friend’s ex-partner!

Fine, so?

But best friend doesn’t like it. He runs to his tormented EX to console her and even shed a tear. Wow – Hollywood come forth, willya?

And then he decides to forego a place on the national squad. How brave and patriotic! And ofcourse grossly stupid….

The verdict:

Terry grabbed a knicker that shouldn’t have rocked the boat – probably put it back too 🙂  

Wayne proved an idiot, giving up the opportunity of his life  –  a Bridge too weak and wobbly !

And England will once again try to repeat its 1966 feat in SA.

Time to sift the Boys from the Men.

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Day four brought just a little bit of relief to me only as a KKR fan…..with the win it seemed like I wasn’t a sucker,supporting some team without a direction! However, seeing them win without Duckworth Lewis method being brought in would have been greater joy….the real game is about playing it and as a fan its the adrenalin that players bring in us mere mortals which gives value for our money and love for the sport…

IPL Cheersleaders on the Bench

IPL Cheersleaders on the Bench

Taking on from my last blog, Day 2 was much interrupted with rains and D/L was name of the game then. I raised concern about Lalit Modi’s gamble on SA and as I was wiping off the fears of more bad weather as the pessimist in me…it strikes again.

London shines in good April weather while SA reels under bursts of heavy rain….its sod’s law as we are often prone to.

india-election

The learning probably is that India needs to mature as a nation that can withstand the pressure of its General Elections and support national events that make its people upbeat, generate economic activity and keep the one of the best developments in the national sport within her boundaries.

When will they ever learn? The bloody politicians!

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It is Season II for IPL and the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) has just announced that the tournament will be played off shore this year – that is a BIG change of plan. With India in the throes of a General election in April/ May, the Government has been unable to commit security to the 59 matches originally scheduled at venues all over India! Power of politics eh….!

But is this the real opportunity?

Kolkata Knight Riders

Kolkata Knight Riders

With ambitions to be the NFL of the cricket world, the first season of the Indian Premier League was played with much fanfare, glamour and glitz last year. Eight teams rocked millions in Indian cities with some high octane performances. In January 2008, the television rights to the competition were sold by the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the organising body, for $1 billion (£500 million), to confirm India as cricket’s financial superpower. The auction of eight newly created city sides raised another $720 million. Bollywood took centre stage with the Indian corporate world in tow – cheerleaders from the Washington Redskins shook their booty to the tune of Bhangra and the Indian middle class plunged into 45 days of cricketing frenzy!

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Some of the biggest names of Indian Industry joined hands with Bollywood superstars (Shahrukh Khan, Shilpa Shetty, Preity Zinta) and even Lachlan Murdoch to lap up the eight teams – and we had the Mumbai Indians, Kolkata Knight Riders, Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Daredevils, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Chennai Super Kings, Hyderabad Deccan Chargers and Kings XI Punjab taking guard for glory. The biggest names in world cricket couldn’t resist the glamour and power of one of the richest cricketing body of the world – Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly, Ricky Ponting, Virendra Shehwag, Sanath Jayasuria, Daniel Vettori, Shane Warne – provided a fantastic fusion of performance on the pitch and millions of words for the tabloid columns every morning.

Rajasthan Royals - 2008 Champions

Rajasthan Royals - 2008 Champions

Cricket had not seen such glamorous days since Kerry Packer transformed it by taking on the game’s establishment with his World Series in 1977 and luring top players with huge salaries.

The probable venues for this year are now South Africa or England. To some it may seem a futile attempt to keep the tournament going – with questions about the feasibility, the financial viability, the returns, interest levels, ticket sales etc. But this is the chance (by default) for IPL to actually go international. Taking the glamour and excitement to foreign shores and making it a success will probably help breaking the barriers and also help cricket cross the threshold into mass global appeal. This is not copy-book test cricket – this is all about adrenalin, glamour, pace, footwork and only four hours of throbbing appeal! A chance to modify the formula for global appeal!

Shilpa shetty - Co-owner of Rajasthan Royals

Shilpa shetty - Co-owner of Rajasthan Royals

With a move to South Africa , this could be a real test for its 2010 FIFA World Cup preparations.

OR

If England gets to host, it could be a win-win for all. With the current economic mood and no exciting events till the Olympics, this could be a whiff of fresh air, even a distraction for the media from its ever so boring, monotonous attempts to glorify the ‘Credit Crunch’ with soul dampening commentaries on the City and our rudderless politicians! And with doses of Bollywood thrown in, it could just be a start to a gorgeous summer of ’09!

All in the name of the GAME!

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