June 2, 2008

In the End...

So there you have it. The first Indian Premier League did really have a fairy tale ending. Now that the fixtures are over, the record books rewritten, the cheer girls on their way home, many things have changed. In addition a lot of people ended up looking like fools and that includes yours truly. Some forty days ago when I first wrote about IPL, I, like most mortals, thought differently.

What can I say in my defense? I’m definitely older and wiser now!

No one thought that Rajasthan would win the IPL. Just like no one thought Mumbai would stay out of the semi finals. Everyone expected Deccan Chargers to be true to their name but…. What were people thinking? One look at the Bangalore line-up and everyone jumped the gun to brand them a test side. How the hell did people think that VVS Laxman’s captaincy would be any different? How the hell did Rahul Dravid’s cricketing genius of a brain pick up people like Sunil Joshi to bowl for the Royal Challengers? Sunil Joshi turned out to be the oldest player in the IPL; older than Anil Kumble who is the resident dinosaur of any team he is a part of!

I won’t bore you with the intricacies of T-20 for there aren’t any attached to this format of the game. The whole idea here is to make 160-180 plus runs and then bowl your heart out. Concurrently the fielders need to jump like idiots at everything. The name of the game is ‘improvise’ and the captains who did that stood out. In a way the final was a befitting tribute to the new tournament. Here were two teams who relied more on players than stars, two captains who thought out of the box and didn’t forget the names of their own players! MSD and Shane Warne represented two different cricketing generations and yet looked like mirror images.

I, like many fools, was rooting for the Chargers in addition to the Chennai Super Kings. A week into the IPL and I realized that there was a team called Rajasthan Royals. The way Warne marshaled his greenhorn troops should be a lesson for other captains. There are many good things that have come out of the IPL and some of them include Yusuf Pathan, Asnodkar, MS Gony, Parthiv Patel and Sreevats Goswami. But nothing can compare to the greater good that IPL has done. In less than two months it has increased Indian cricket’s bench strength beyond expectations. More importantly it has, once again, taught players like Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh that it’s nice to possesses an attitude. Only if the attitude were positive!

2 Responses to “In the End...”

  • well written piece! I am also going to miss IPL. Sharad Paware said that families started sitting together and watching IPL , though it did not happen in our house hold, still may be sooraj bartajiya should make a movie- a family which watches cricket together, stays together- mummy
  • i didn't watch IPL but i got the summary of the most happening event on the social calendar in three paragraphs. Thanks.
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