It may be because I am, what my patriotic, un-parochial section of readers (the same kind who gloated in the previous post when Sourav was dropped—-which shows that not all of us belong to their concept of India) call an oxymoron. (Yes at least one of them in a comment on a post started calling me that and soon my other “Indian” friends picked it up. Of course that’s because my “Indian” friend understands that oxymoron means someone who is more than a moron—an oxygenated moron or a cross between an ox and a moron).
In any case, I accept my low scum-like intellect in front of these fine men/women/something else. Because I am thoroughly confused now.
Okay here’s the deal. I believe everything More says. Kiran More has always been my idol—-ever since he dropped Gooch after which Goochie went on to make more than 300 runs against us. I have always been in awe of his rotating-round-and-round-like-a-ballerina hook shot and his sublime keeping skills.
Most importantly, I have always admired his cricketing acumen—–like when he allegedly called Kirmani (whose wicketkeeping we all know was way way below More) a “goalkeeper” while arguing for the selection of Parthiv Patel (who hails from Gujrat—the same state where India’s greatest keeper was born) [Thanks Yuvraj Dodia for pointing out the mistake —Parthiv was not born in Baroda but More and Parthiv are still State-mates.]
Which for all of us, who have seen Parthiv keep, just goes to show how much premium Kiran More puts on performance and how much “Indian” he is—where the word “Indian” is a synonym for region-blind.
[An aside: There is a commenter on my blog who berates me, in unparliamentary language, for not being region-blind and not being “Indian”—all the while calling himself North Indian]
Putting my trust in More, I believed that the reason why Sourav was dropped from the ODI side initially was because “noone wants to disturb a winning combination.” I kind of like that—putting performance over superstition.
However what bamboozled me was when More dropped Sourav Ganguly from a winning Test combination this time round. Surely, the important thing is “performance” and not “let’s get rid of this guy whom we hate at all cost”—right?
And the confusion continues. In a team where as Chappell and More says—past does not count; what counts is IMMEDIATE performance, I was a bit perplexed (from my knowledge of the theory of integers and their total order) that 79 (Ganguly’s match aggregate) is lesser than Dravid (77) and Yuvi (77).
To be honest, I believed there was little to choose between Ganguly(79), Dravid(77), Yuvi(77), Laxman(80) —but evidently not.
I also thought that when Sourav had made a comeback after performing in the domestic circuit and then had gained the trust of our Supreme Lord Greg (he said that Sourav had done “all that was expected of him” ), Dada had redeemed his sinful past tarnished by “being his own man” and for “arrogance with the press”.
What he did from now on would count as his “performance” on which his future selection would depend.
Again evidently not.
I also thought that Dalmiya was parochial (the Rediff article which reported Dalmiya’s defeat in the elections called him so) and that Sharad Pawar and Kiran More are as fair as Solomon—-and that the new board president and chief selector would usher in a new age of region-blind selection. An encouraging first step was made when they, hours after coming to office, removed all the selectors who had voted for Sourav. These selectors also, according to More-Pawar, had not performed.
When Wasim Jaffar from Mumbai comes into the team after being kept in cold storage for many years, my faith in More shakes. Just a bit. Not much. He is still the “Give me More” man. But as I said I am a bit shaken.
But what confuses me most of all is this line from Rediff—in an article sympathetic to Ganguly.
This time, one wouldn’t fault Bengali cricket fans if they come out again in support of Ganguly. Certainly, he doesn’t deserve such humiliation after leading Indian cricket to dizzy heights.
Was Ganguly only the captain of Bengal? Am I the only person who feels that dropping Ganguly is a bit inconsistent and might not be motivated by that grossly misunderstood word–“performance” ? I am of course not suggesting that More and Pawar are parochial —woe betide me for even thinking of that. But are Bengalis the only ones who are going to “come out” in his support—does no one else feel that injustice has being done here?
I dont want to say “I told you so” but this article is precisely what I have always claimed—-the association of Ganguly with Bengalis is so ingrained in the popular consciousness that the injustice meted out to him should be, according to Rediff, visible only to people who (again according to my non-parochial, “INDIAN” commenter-friends) pronounce “save” as “shave” and do no work ie Bengalis.
However I would like to think that what Rediff says is wrong. That people, regardless of where they come from, will see that there is something wrong going on here. At least, I hope so.
Many Indian cricketers have been given bad farewells but has anyone faced such humiliation and targeted, vindictive vitriol?
I doubt it.
But then of course, as a few of my visitors (who call themselves different flavors of “Indian”) , say—Sourav deserves the worst kind of humiliation possible and so do Bengalis.
Of course we do. No confusion there.