The World Cup’s first week has been, as expected, spectacular. The ICC unveiled its bold new vision to rid the game of its thorniest problem. No not match fixing you fool. I am talking about ordinary ticket-buying spectators. It has been long known in the corridors of power that people who buy tickets are the enemies of the game, taking away precious space from corporate boxes, hospitality booths and enclosures for VIPs, encroaching onto ad banner space and the other things that make cricket the game it is. Which is why this time the ICC decided to sell a few thousand tickets for the marquee game to the ordinary folk, leading to scenes straight out of Egypt and Libya as the cops made the “Palti Hit” and the “Upar Cut” the official strokes of the World Cup. Bravo. And I am not talking about Dwayne Bravo who twisted his ankle, which I am sure will fix itself right before the IPL.
The cricket was of course full of glorious uncertainties and unanswered questions. Would Kenya’s army of Big Os (Odoyo, Ouma, Obuya) be bowled out within the thirty-second over or could they drag it to the thirty-eighth? How many Indians will be in the Canadian final XI? Is Munaf Patel, floating like a butterfly at mid-on, concentrating on Junaid Siddique or Imrul Kaye’s middle stump? Why has this South African man, Vincent Barnes named his dog Sachin and how should we as Indians express our outrage at “bhagwan ka apman” (to quote India TV)? Who will win the Investor’s Clinic car, the one with Yuvraj Singh’s picture on the side, in Big Toss? Whose great idea was it to use Yuvraj Singh as a symbol of level-headed investment? Is Rakhi Sawant being honest when she tells Yuvraj Singh’s dad “Main aapki Menaka baanne ke liye taiyaar hoon”? Or is her true intention revealed when she says “Main Soniya Gandhi banna chahtee hoon.” And finally why does the astrologer tell Rakhi that mor (peacocks) kabhi sex naheen karta? [Link]
Of course the highlight of the week remains Ricky the Punter Ponting’s breaking of the LCD TV in the dressing room. Of course that an Australian engaged in hooliganism is not surprising, the Australian contingent in the Commonwealth Games did the same, representative as they are of a country with the noblest of sporting traditions. What was interesting was initial reports that Ponting had struck the TV with his bat. The moment I heard it I knew ki daal mein kuch kala hai since if Ponting, in his current form, had tried to hit a TV with his bat he would possibly have missed it all together. All my doubts were put to rest when I read the real explanation.
Ponting reacted angrily after he was run out for 28 against Zimbabwe on Monday but was amused at the furore that followed after a television was struck by his groin protector. [Link]
That makes sense. The mighty captain possibly humped the television, striking it with groin. It may have been the frustration of getting bogged down by Zimbabwe. It may have been the frustration of not making money at the IPL. Or it may have been triggered by Big Toss on television or hearing yet another pearl of wisdom from Ranjit Fernando. Whatever it be, Ricky Ponting attacking a television with his groin (protector) has been the single most dramatic moment the last week.
What can I say? So far, its been that kind of a tournament.
[Image courtesy: The Telegraph]