Friday, August 19, 2005


The first match of the Afro-Asia Cup is over with the Africans winning a low scoring encounter-a rarity in one-dayers now. The match once again exposed the frailities of the teams from Asia when facing the seaming and bouncing ball. That is not the reason for this post.

The telecast of the match was on Zee Sports which lost out in the bid to secure the rights from BCCI. The television presentation was led by a lady-a standard offering since the heady days of the 2003 World Cup where Mandira Bedi flummoxed people like Tony Greig and Barry Richards with her lack of knowledge on cricket. The same story here. The presenters also were able to change their apparels in between the two innings. This is again not the reason for this post.

The presenters had the company of Kapil Dev and Waqar Younis. The presenters were firing one dumb question after another. Pity that two greats were subject to such torture. All this in the name of demystifying cricket and taking the game closer to the people. Waqar Younis was asked about his entry into the Pakistan team. Wagar told the story about how Imran asked him to join the team to Sharjah after a few bowls at the nets. Then Kapil was asked about the kind of selection policy in India. Kapil responded by stating that a different policy is followed by India. The presenters were insisting to know why a selection like Waqar's does not ever take place in India. There have been many instances in the past when youngsters with no first-class experience fast tracked into the Pakistan team-most such instances took place when Imran was the captain. I wondered about the likely reply from Kapil. The great all-rounder did not bat an eyelid and replied that it was possible in Pakistan because the country has dictatorship. In India a different selection policy is followed on account of democracy.

Does this mean that Kapil as captain was not able to have players of his choice while Imran enjoyed the ultimate authority as captain. Such an observation left me totally bewildered. Is it a six or a an outswinger?Well said Sir.

No comments: