Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Men in Blues?

-By Swetha Amit


Bollywood merging with cricket seems to have an adverse rub off effect. The onscreen drama of hard ‘hitting’ ordeals and tears has sadly manifested itself on field. The IPL saga unfortunately seems to have had repercussions amongst the uni-colored team causing them to literally dwell in blues. While nothing can justify the ‘slap’ stick episode that occurred post a tensioned filled match, it certainly tends to make one ponder about the dire consequences that prevail due to this glamorous merger.

The unpleasant incident of Harbhajan slapping Sreesanth has sadly made the Indian team a laughing stock for the world. Especially when not so long ago they were on back slapping terms. The ‘historical’ antics of the two players can be traced back to the earlier matches where they were pitted against the Australians. While it has caused exasperation for the BCCI none can eliminate the possibility of being instigated from the opponents and stressing the saying ‘it takes two hands to clap’. The only difference being that this time players of the same team are at logger heads. While both have clarified their cordial stance through the media as being like family members, it makes one raise a pertinent question of whether quick bucks are creating rifts amidst the mountain of nationality and pride for the country.

It was shameful to see a fiery Harbhajan and a weeping Sreesanth on the grounds and the latter being consoled by his counterparts. Politics and differences are inevitable between team members yet it is shocking to see it come across before their opponents
(In other games) who secretly must be rejoicing in their own manner.

The concept of IPL seems to be extracting the spirit of sport slowly by its whopping amounts of millions and billions. Unlike the Ranji trophy where money isn’t the prime factor and the game purely involves the inspirational element along with playing solely for the country. In short, the focus is being stressed on sport here and a question of pride. Acquiring a winning streak involving a lump sum amount at stake becomes the main aim in the IPL equaling it to the cut throat competition between profit making business houses.

Should money alone be a motivation for such self destructive tactics? Is it worth the cracks that are seeping in slowly in the smooth surface of the Indian team? Will it destroy the team spirit and the joyous moment of the uni colored team after tasting a victory against other countries? Will the concentration and high pressure come in the way of the team members or the passion for the game?

Many seem to have caught on to the IPL trend of being an honor to play amongst the reputed players. It is even said that being amidst sports person from other countries will minimize the animosity between players of various teams. It can be very well rationalized as a mere stance of professional and the pretext of a ‘healthy’ sport being played between the multi colored. However is it at the cost of creating rifts and bad blood amongst the Indian team?

Sportiveness should exist even while playing International cricket and doesn’t necessarily require a la football type of ‘clubbing’. Neither does it require high stakes to instill this crucial element. In fact the darker shades of IPL seem to cast a cloud on the clarity of concentration towards playing for the country and place all their eggs in one basket or should we say one club?

Time will tell if multi colored or rather money ‘colored’ stance will drive the men to go deeper in ‘blues’ or get out of it.
Written for www.msn.co.in



Blogger KParthasarathi said...

One swallow doesn't make a summer.This isolated and unfortunate incident between two 'known' aggressive and petulant players should not cloud the development of bon homie and friendship seen among Indian players with others from different countries.When I saw Sangakkara and Sohal putting their arms around Sree in commisseration,I could see perhaps the only good that flows from the IPL circus.Some of the Aussie greats take time to mentor the youngsters.Aussies and Indians have grown to respect each other thanks to IPL.I would not blame the high stakes for the aberrations of a few volatile characters.Look at the money the tennis and football players make.

I feel that bringing bollywood and even corporate class has brought the game a few notches down given their cheap gimmicks

9:35 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

I agree that IPL will build goodwill amongst international players, but my concern is that IPL should not slowly take more importance over playing for the country. Once this sort of a league gets established, then players will be more interested in representing their clubs than their country, as is the case in football. Players may soon skip their country matches to stay fit for their clubs?

Secondly, since the Indian team players are all divided into various teams, there is every chance of misunderstandings amongst them since a huge sum of money is involved. The adrenaline running in these games is quite high and relations once strained will take time to bridge.

9:11 AM  
Anonymous Mukundhan said...

If you remember, i was advocating long before that Harbhajan should have been shown the doors. Harbhajan cannot keep himself off atrocity. The 11 match IPL ban is still not justified. He should have been given a lifetime ban like Shoaib for his repeated acts of misdemeanour. The least that you expect from a senior Indian player is some maturity.

And i have moved to Wordpress for a full time cricket blog. Got a few friends abroad, looking to seek more global recognition in the blogosphere. I have added your space to my feedreader. So i will keep dropping a comment on your page then and there :-).


2:10 AM  
Blogger Alok said...

IPL is absolutely rubbish and things that is happening on & off the field is proving the fact that cricket will be a looser (as a game). I seriously doubt the credibility of IPL T20.

The outcome of such tournament and about this gentlemen’s game is questionable; I don’t know the life time of this re-mixed version of the game but I wouldn’t surprise to see the cricket grounds as the future ‘Dance Bars’. It’ goes exactly the way Rajdeep (of IBN) Says - Page 3 cricket must not be allowed to become page one sport.

9:35 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

@Mukundh: Yes it is unprofessional and atrocious of Harbhajjan to indulge in such behaviour on field. His antics have gone too far. But it certainly makes ones eyebrows raise at the slow repurcussions IPL is creating amongst the Indian players and all for the sake of a lumpsum amount.

And thanks.:-) Your comments are always welcome.

3:20 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

@Alok: I completely endorse your views. Its like adulterating milk with excess amount of water that takes the former's real essence away.Cricket seems to be going that way sadly. The overdose of showbiz is leading to a 'show'down literally and unwarranted drama when all it was earlier a gentleman's game and not a glamourous one.

3:25 AM  

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