Monday, March 24, 2008

Permanent Insanity

BCCI has done it again. It has riled me enough to wake me out of my blogging slumber. For days I have been searching for something that I feel passionate enough to write about. Trust the greediest organization that exists today to do this. The IPL tamasha has been in full swing. They have put an end to the international careers of people like Shane Bond because they aren’t competing in their twenty-twenty league. Now they are nailing the coffin efficiently by shunting out test matches. I saw a news article today about how BCCI will sacrifice a test match during England’s tour of India to accommodate, hold your breath, seven one day internationals and two twenty-twenty games!!! Ostensibly, the reason being given is that England’s players want to be back by Christmas. Forget for once the fact that Indian players in the past have always had to tour around Diwali. I mean, you can’t expect the Indian board to care about that, right? However, sacrificing a test match to accommodate two or three more mind-numbing, inconsequential bouts of fifty over games is infuriating. Who the hell remembers these games? Raise your hand if you can recollect any of the matches of the seven match one day series between India and Australia last year. Now, raise your hand if you remember what happened in the test series in Australia soon after. I rest my case. I know of course that I am in a minority. I cling by the silly romance of the test match, the belief that it is a true test of skill and quality. I know that most cricket viewers today don’t have the patience to watch a day long game, and would rather be done within three hours. Watching a test match is out of the question altogether. I know of course that in the long term test matches will reduce substantially, what with BCCI in full pursuit. However, I am entitled to my frustration. Today’s cricket viewer probably deems cricket as mere entertainment, where bowlers are props and the number of boundaries and sixers is directly proportional to the amount of satisfaction a viewer ends the day with. Subtlety is a curse. Unfortunately, BCCI will speed track that argument to satisfy its thirst for money. I feel for my game, and the shabby treatment it is being meted out. I wouldn’t be surprised if the pitches for the South Africa test matches turn out to be deadpan batting tracks resulting in draws (akin to the Pakistan team’s turn) thus allowing BCCI more freedom in killing of what is obviously no golden goose for it.

10 comments:

vivalavi said...

I know nothing about the BCCI or cricket. All I can say is that it felt like you said all of that in one, long, angry breath and then a deep sigh.

Hope to read more from you. :)

Parth said...

@Vi: I did, I did!

Sridhar Iyer said...

I can sort of empathize with your angst, but you just have to bite the bullet on this one.

Shorter, more commercialized forms of Cricket are the future - the earlier you get used to the idea, the better. I, for one, am not among the test-match loving puritans, so I am all for twenty20s, ODIs and privatized cricket teams (I'm waiting for the day when we have private cricket teams in India the way the NFL or NBA is organized in the US).

Moreover, BCCI is a private consortium, and like all other private organizations, they should do what's best for their bottomline. Nothing wrong with that. Sorry :-)

Parth said...

@Sridhar: There is a difference between kill and overkill. You can't have a ridiculous amount of cricket where the quality is substandard and the result is immaterial. Perhaps it really is immaterial for someone who's not a puritan :-) BCCI may be a private consortium, but they also are the guardians of Indian cricket unfortunately, and more so of world cricket given their clout. Cricketers are not commodities, and neither is cricket, at least in my books.

sd said...

There are other quaint people who like Test cricket more than 200-20 or ODIs...who watch evry ball of a test macth if they can...err...one of those people would be me. I am yet to see a whole 20-20, begin to end. I know exactly how you feel.

Parth said...

@SD: It feels good to know there are others out there who care for test cricket, it really does.

sd said...

With the kind of grounds they are coming up for test cricket in India... it will be a wonder if people want to see any tests!

Parth said...

@SD: You just beat me to this comment :-) That's exactly what I was thinking on my way to work. Looks like the comment I made about flat-bed tracks for this series is coming true. One look at the past few series that have taken in India will confirm that. Ridiculous.

sowmya said...

Finally!! Someone who thinks like me!!

Parth said...

@Sowmya: Glad to see more like-minded people :-)