Word of the Week #104:

Denounce

Ever since I can remember, I have always heard how cricket was supposed to be a gentlemen’s game. Playing the sport for all of my childhood, the concept of sportsmanship had been etched deep into my mind.

It is partly because of these memories that the events of this week about the details of the state of the sport, and the attitudes of those who practise and govern it, have left me quite disheartened.

Now, of course, I am not talking about the allegations of corruption surrounding DDCA. No, today, we talk about the rot at the very top.

Today, we talk about what is increasingly being referred to as the Sandpaper Gate.

Sure, enough has been said about the players who were caught in the act, and were thus forced to confess. But what about the men sitting high up in the governing council, who thought a one-match ban would suffice for the mastermind, while the actual culprit gets away with little more than a slap on the knuckles?

To put this in perspective, back in 2008, when Australia was visiting India, Gautam Gambhir received a one-match ban for seemingly elbowing a Shane Watson who was quite obviously impeding the batsman’s natural running motion and was clearly in the wrong. You cannot jump in the path of a moving vehicle and then blame your injuries on the driver, can you? Well, apparently you can.

This was not an isolated instance, of course. Many players from the subcontinent have faced punishments disproportionate to their infractions, while Australian and English players seem to get away conveniently.

I wonder what the reason might be…

 

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Word of the Week #100:

Centenary

There was a time when I was quite serious about cricket. Playing professionally was not a far-fetched dream.

10 years have passed since then, and as one would expect, my life has changed a lot. Regardless, everything that I learned during that span is still fresh on my mind, and is still applicable to the challenges I face in my life.

One of the things I learned was the art of building your innings. I never got to apply it in cricket itself because, well, I’d hardly ever last long enough.

Regardless, let us take a quick look:

  • 1 – 15: This is the toughest phase. Try to get through this without doing anything stupid.
  • 16 – 40: This is where things get easier. You begin to understand yourself and the conditions around you.
  • 41 – 60: This can be a bit of a transition period. The ball is no longer new, the pace of the game has changed. You either adjust, or you fall.
  • 61 – 80: Everything seems to flow perfectly. This is when most of highlight shots come.
  • 81 – 99: This is the treacherous part of the path. Fatigue and complacency are your biggest enemies, and you just want to trudge along out of sheer persistence.
  • 100: Finally… This is the realm where only a chosen few can tread. Take off your helmet, look to the crowds. Take a moment for yourself.
  • 101 and beyond: Just keep moving forward.

Word of the Week #52:

Mercurial

Look. When people start using the same adjectives that commentators for decades have held in reserve for Shahid Afridi to describe you, it does make you question the entire universe, and your place in it.

Is it weird that I keep bringing him up?

To be very honest, he has been a major part of all our childhoods, has he not? Maybe not so much the impact as the sheer span of his presence.

Anyway, let us shift away from this topic before the Nationalist Brigade breaks into my house to confiscate my passport right on the eve of this fairly moderate, but nonetheless noteworthy, landmark.

Continue reading Word of the Week #52: