Thursday, August 02, 2007

India's Tour of England: Men behaving badly

Every so often I'll get embroiled in a discussion where desi cricket fans will complain that the ICC regularly punishes Indians for offenses that non-South Asian cricketers get away with. And every now and then someone will wish we could bring back that aggressive attitude that ran through the team when Saurav Ganguly was captain.

The second test against England, which India won handily throws that debate open again. And I have some observations to share.

Why is Sreesanth being talked about in the Indian media? There is a character even more annoying than him on the field. He plays for South Africa and his name is Andre Nel. But whenever Nel's behavior comes up for discussion, people deflect the discussion by talking about what a character he is and mention his commitment to his team. Since when has commitment to the team got anything to do with behaving maturely on the field? Sreesanth falls in the same category so we should leave him alone.

However, there are two issues worth mentioning. First, Sreesanth's bad behavior deflects from everything else the other team members do. So we have more chances of getting away with uh, aggression because the umpires will have their hands full with Sreesanth. Tell me that's not cricket and I'll ask you to go watch every Australian game from the last ten years. Second, Sreesanth bowled rubbish in the second innings and that is a cause for concern. Primarily because the English team worked on him and the subsequent disintegration of his bowling indicates a tumultuous emotional personality.

Finally there is that hilarious incident where some unknown English cricketer chucked jellybeans on the pitch when Zaheer Khan was batting, resulting in the Indian seamer losing his temper and later responding spectacularly by dismantling the English batting line up to hand India the Test. You almost wish the ICC would look into it.

But I'm happy that they'll let this slide. Why? Because in the annals of comical things that have happened in cricket, this has to be right up there. Can you imagine what the Aussies will do to the England cricketers when they play each other next? I can already hear the cries from the slips "you're just a jellybean pretending to be a Smartie!"

UPDATE: More suggestions from readers: Manish believes Mr. Bean might be asked to captain England. Amrita suggests Jughead's Bean is a fertile area for more sledging.


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be surprised if Mr.Bean is asked to captain England at the Oval. It would be fun and would make England a lot more competitive. Of course, JellyBeans would be a lot more relevant.

Unknown said...

I totally forgot about Mr. Bean. There's some ammo for making jokes next time England take the field.

Anonymous said...

How about Jughead's Jellybean? A little (female) toddler.

Unknown said...

Ooh, another one I missed. Turns out you can't think enough of jellybeans related stuff when you really need to! The entire non-English cricketing world thanks you Amrita, this one is rich with potential.

Anonymous said...

LOL! boys! :P