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    November 28, 2006

    Outside off, left alone

    When I worked at TWFKAC Cricinfo, I did a lot of live text commentary. One of the most standard phrases used, especially in a test match, was, as the title says, 'Outside off, left alone'.

    I really wish Greg Chappell had also responded in the same way to the public outrage over the Indian side's performance in South Africa so far, especially when it came to India's parliamentarians asking for his head. Chappell said
    I can't stop them from making comments; that's what they are paid for to do in Parliament.
    Instead, he ought to have just played it mum and made it clear that he thought that everyone was entitled to his/her own opinions.

    Besides, if, as legislators feel that Chappell has no right to lecture MPs on their duties, neither do the MPs. The Indian cricket team is certainly not being subsidized or paid for by the government. There maybe a few stadiums on government owned land which have been leased out to the BCCI. The only folks who are entitled to question the performance of the team are followers of the game, not folks donning the hat of legislators. Even they do have an option to stop following. Like Greg's brother Ian said,
    There's a little button on your TV marked Volume. If you don't like it turn it down. If you still don't like it, there's another button marked OFF - hit that and you don't have to see me either. You've got your job to do, I've got mine, don't come complaining to me.
    Without dragging in politics into this cricket blog, it is quite obvious why there's such a brouhaha, given the loudest voices are from Bengal-based legislators.

    Chappell scored 7110 test runs, with 755 fours and 16 sixes. Even given that he was a stroke player, I don't think he'd have scored at more than a 50% strike rate. Which means he'd have scored nearly 4000 runs [7110 - (4*755 + 6*16)] in around 13400 balls [2*7110 - 755 - 16]. It's probably fair to say that the bulk of those ~ 4000 runs were scored in 1s and 2s, with a few 3s. So let's have a distribution of 50% singles, 35% twos and 15% threes. That works out to 2000 runs in singles, 1400 in twos and 600 in threes, i.e. he faced a total of 2900 balls for those runs (2000 + 1400/2 + 600/3). That still means he'd have faced nearly 10,000 dot balls. So why on earth couldn't he have left another go?

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    Thus spake Jagadish @ 11:40 AM |
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    6 sledge(s):

    Yep...Chappel's mouth, rather than his actions, have been the single biggest cause for his problems. Remember when he said about Indian public's over-reactions ..something to the effect..'all the matters in the end is results, not words'...well...maybe now he would realise...that when results are not good, words matter more. Or maybe he won't.

    Anyway...about your point "he Indian cricket team is certainly not being subsidized or paid for by the government" - to my understanding, BCCI is some sort of welfare/charity (or some such legal term) organisation..and doesnt have to pay taxes. So...umm..there is some kind of govt stake.

    Ofcourse I still thinking raising an issue about Indian poor performance in the parliament, and that too when we're doing poorly in a land where we've always been like this, is ridiculous.

    And yes, ofcourse, if they question Chappel's work, he can question their's. Not that he did. He chose a wrong sentence as a means of 'leaving outside off' as you would say :-)

    By Blogger worma (28-Nov-2006, 2:25:00 PM)  

    my sentiments exactly...

    @worma, i didnt know that BCCI didnt pay taxes. are you sure about that? Coz thats definitely one MAJOR source of revenue the govt is missing out on...

    By Blogger MountCleverest (28-Nov-2006, 3:51:00 PM)  

    mountcleverest: not entirely sure..was relying on old memory of having read somewhere. Did some Googling just now..this old article from The Hindu suggests that there is something unclear behind BCCI's status, since the govt had withdrawn the blanket exemption given to sports bodies like BCCI.

    By Blogger worma (28-Nov-2006, 4:48:00 PM)  

    worma: You're probably right. The BCCI is registered as some society, under a Tamil Nadu Societies Registration Act and enjoys tax exemption. Does that justify MPs raising the issue? No. Besides, Greg Chappell isn't being paid for by our MPs, you or me. The BCCI pays him. If anything, the MPs should have blasted the BCCI, not the coach/cricketers.

    By Blogger Jagadish (28-Nov-2006, 5:21:00 PM)  

    Yes ofcourse it doesnt justify the MPs' tirades. This does not qualify as an issue of national importance - it is just a sport, and even if Indians assign it a bigger-than-necessary status (actually its actions like these that help to hype up the importance of cricket in Indian society) - and this isnt even a World Cup or some such extra prestigious event. We've been getting thrashed in SA for ages.

    And even if they had to raise the issue, how does Chappell come into picture. How do they know for sure that coaching is the issue here? Haven't teams performed badly under better coaches also? Name a coach in the world who hasnt faced this situation. How would they react if Sachin Tendulkar went on air tomorrow and raised the issue about poor governance in the country, or maybe poor performance record of our parliament? After all, he is a tax paying member of the democracy, and he elects as well as funds the activities of the MPs.

    Ahhh...there are thousands of things that are wrong with this whole issue...if only one of our media houses took up the cause of sanity and wrote sensibly and in detail about the idiocy of our elected parliamentarians. But then, our media is the initiater...they're the ones who have absolutely nothing to lose in stoking the fire. Even if Indian cricket goes to the pits...they would fill up their spaces with inflammatory material...which is as much value for money as hyping the team at slighest signs of recovery.

    By Blogger worma (28-Nov-2006, 6:00:00 PM)  

    These are the same people who went and cheered for India in the 2003 World Cup, after the whipping against Australia in the league game. I suspect we'll see them troop to the Caribbean as well next year.

    By Blogger Jagadish (28-Nov-2006, 7:01:00 PM)  


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