Sunday, May 26, 2013

Judgement day in IPL-6 : The final game between the cricketers and the crooks (or between the Master & the President).

A huge queue had formed at the Eden Gardens on the day the Board of Commercial Cricket in India (BCCI) had organized the final of IPL-6. The President of BCCI, while nursing his peg of Blue Label whiskey at the local board-dinner held the night before, had predicted the same. The President was happy that his team could clock the fifth final in the sixth edition of the game and wanted all the youngsters & fans  of the country seated in India or abroad to cheer his band of yellow shirts to a glorious third win. It mattered to him that no other official of the board was so powerful as him since he not only headed the board but also decided the rules of the tournament, which sometimes he ensured were drafted to favor his team. Board presidents have come and gone but no one had dared to buy a team and win the trophy so many times . The President was also the owner of a cement company whose product is hardly advertised but now  thanks to its sponsorship of the winning team for last 6 years, the company's name was known to one and all. It was irrelevant that they always bought a more popular brand of cement when they needed to buy cement.

But the queuing fans! Oh, they were in thousands . Like the proverbial band of sheep, each of them stood patiently quite oblivious of the rest. All were glued to their hand-held device, their heads bowed, eyes transfixed on the small back-lit screens and fingers moving at lightning speed. As cars whizzed past the serpentine queue, their internet chat rooms were abuzz with the outcome of today's final. Will it be the Yellow shirts or will it be the Blue shirts? The Master was enlisted among the Blue shirts but was not sure of playing because of a reported hand injury. Although his replacement had come good, it was the  mere presence of a cricket-lover like the Master that  was enough to motivate the team to greater heights and possibly their first win in the tournament. The Master's cabinet of trophies lacks this one.

Elsewhere in the stands and in the alleys of the huge stadium & the club-house, there were murmurs of not allowing the President to take the stands and hand over the trophy to the winning team . For a scandal had broken out just a week back when the law enforcers unearthed a huge match-fixing racket, which quickly devoured a few players, a large number of illegal bookies, Bollywood actors , an umpire & a co-owner of the Yellow shirts. The latter happened to be a relative of the President. There were angry voices in the stands that talked about the entire tournament having been fixed, year after year. However, the spectacle of the tournament with its band of cheerleaders &  DJs had simply carried away the young fans from the fairness of the game to the trivia and the glamour.

Or so the President thought! He was hoping for his team to register its third win and just as success wipes away the accumulated sins of the past, so will all the evolving dissatisfaction with his administration be forgotten. The President never wanted the trophy so badly as in this year and he was hoping for the cricket-lovers to vindicate his stand by filling up the stadium. Little did he know that the new generation of fans were attracted to IPL more for the sheer spectacle of the game than the purity of the match in question. They wanted to witness live the sixes and fours, the fixes and near-misses and most of all they rejoiced with equal enthusiasm to success as well as to demolition, whether of a team or its owner.

In slam-bang T20games, emotions and morality take second place to celebrations & spectacle often devouring the creator along with it.

2 comments: said...

Well t20 is tweaked version of Cricket the so called gentleman's game and very different to original format that is Test Cricket. In T20, IPL ,Big Bash etc the main focus is on entertainment and hence IPL matches have all that glamorous set up which attracts people. However my personal opinion is that IPL matches will always have big crowds even if the match fixing and betting controversy is there, you see people go to watch movies even if public image of a movie star is not so clean because all they care for is entertainment, same is the case with IPL.

Salty said...

@CreativeUrja, You are right. People also drink Cola even when they know it contains pesticide. Perhaps IPL can bring in more entertainment by keeping 3 players reserved for fixing per team per match. That will make it transparent.
Thanx for visiting my blog and your comment.