Archive for November, 2009
When you look into the dictionaries to find the meaning of a legend, it leads you to historical stories based on facts or fiction but, the legend we want to discuss here is a person of extraordinary accomplishment. And, this is a verisimilitude legend – which means it is a living legend, a true and real person and the stories of this legend is not a myth but, based on facts and happenings where this small boy called Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar arises from a humble background in Mumbai and transforms himself into a legend.
For those who are not aware I would like to mention here that Ramesh Tendulkar was a Marathi novelists and he named his son Sachin after he was inspired by the famous music director Sachin Dev Burman or S. D. Burman for short.
When we talk about Sachin we talk about cricket, and records in general and, his records are unmatchable and can be considered a microcosm of a society, and a painless path towards introducing cultural attitudes and natural colour into a campaign which is endless and nonparallel to any sport.
When I read about the legendary Jesse Owens and his records, I feel so much pain in visualizing how much pain Jesse Owens must have gone through when he created a world record in the Berlin Olympics in 1936, Hitler did not shake hands with him. His own country’s President Franklin Roosevelt did not even invite him to the White House or even met him anywhere. His personal life was full of misery because he did not have the money to live a decent life, he even worked as an attendant at a gas station! His record was broken in 1984 by Carl Lewis 4 years after Jesse Owens died.
Back to Sachin and his two decades of domination, I would like to admit that I have been one of the critics who criticized his accomplishments and that was not for the sake of criticism or, as a matter of jealousy that I am a Pakistani and he is an Indian.
NO, I have always been very vocal and straightforward in my comments and I never hesitate to call a spade, a spade. I have criticized, Imran Khan, Inzamamul Haq, Shahid Afridi etc. even though I like their game yet when they made mistakes I never tried to sugarcoat my words.
Hence my criticism towards Tendulkar was not for his game but, it was based on the follies and mistakes he made as a player (He is not perfect and he is NOT a god) and we all make mistakes. I wanted him to play with more aggression and less fear and with no concern about his personal accomplishments or milestones. But, Sachin was and still is a reluctant player when he approaches a milestone.
For his constant struggling in achieving milestones, I have something very special for him to say and he must remember that success, target or to reach a milestone is like a butterfly:
The more you chase it,
The more it will elude you,
But when you turn your mind to other things,
It comes and sits softly on your shoulder
Sachin Tendulkar’s records speaks in volumes, there is no one near him especially in the ODI format, the only player who can come closer to him in test is Ricky Ponting.
Tendulkar, is generally very calm and composed even in very tough situations except for once i.e., in Multan when he was on 194 and the declaration came. I guess it was Ganguly’s deliberate ruse to keep Tendulkar away from achieving yet another milestone because, it was Ganguly who signalled the declaration before stand-in captain Rahul Dravid and waved to Tendulkar to return to the pavilion.
Addressing the media after the day’s play, a livid Tendulkar said: “I was disappointed at not being able to achieve the milestone after coming so close. I was aware that the declaration was on the cards, but I was taken by surprise and the timing. I thought maybe another two-three overs more would have been enough. “ He did not come to the field next day and told the media he is nursing his injured ankle.
Javed Miandad who expressed similar feelings when Imran Khan declared the innings which halted Miandad from scoring a 300, told Sachin Tendulkar: “Don’t worry, Sachin, it is a part of life. Mistakes happen and your team mates have made a mistake,”
During the last few weeks in the previous thread we have discussed at length in determining who is the best Tendulkar or Lara? This is something very difficult to say who is the best. It is absolutely impossible to say who is the best? But, we always discuss this point and expect everyone to reach an agreement and say with one voice that so and so is the BEST or PERFECT.
This is because of our fractured psyche that we never understand the oneness and uniqueness of God, who is the best and perfect and there is no one comparable unto Him. All other human beings and living creatures can be better than others in someway and, not better than others in other ways.
So, we should not try to compare the uniqueness of God’s creatures either. No two fingers are similar but each one of them is as important and as unique as the other.
Having said all this I would like to devote this thread to Sachin Tendulkar for his legendary accomplishments and unmatched records and, for creating a batting culture in India, as every boy wants to be a Sachin Tendulkar. But, legends are not born everyday. Ask Tendulkar how he feels about cricket?
His passion for the game since he was a 3 year old little boy holding that wooden spatula like cricket bat in his hand with so much joy and happiness, could anyone at that time had thought that this little boy will be setting up so many world records and making one billion plus people proud?
Sachin you have accomplished a lot in your life, may be at times you may have had dreams for being a little taller or, your voice may have been like Amitabh Bachan, which is not possible. But, there is something more that you need to accomplish and only time will tell you when you will be a glowing light and a shining example for the rest of the cricketing world.
All the best to you Sachin Tendulkar.
Indian soap operas took the world by storm about 10 years ago and since then, they have shown no signs of stopping. Their demonstration of lavish sets, catharsis based around blood relations, turbulent love stories and family politics has changed the face of Asian entertainment. Indians, Pakistanis and Bengalis sit glued to their TV sets everyday, keen on knowing the progress of a relationship between 2 lovers, or a dispute between the mother in law and her daughter in law, or the nefarious motives of the villainous element of a family.
One of the features of these dramas is that a lot of their titles start with a “K”, as the producers believe it brings good fortune to them, a thought influenced by some tenet of Hindu spirituality. So, we decided to start this thread title with a “K”, hoping that it will bring good fortune to Pakistan cricket.
Pakistan cricket is not any less than an Indian soap opera, and the latest drama created by Ijaz Butt, Younis Khan and the revolting players in the team proves this. Younis Khan, called “Drama Khan” recently by Javed A Khan, has disappointed many of his fans firstly by his slipshod batting in ODI’s recently. Secondly, Younis Khan, troubled by the not-so-secret rebellion in the team and the pressure of playing in a high profile tournament such as the Champions Trophy, offered his resignation on the pretext that he was upset by match fixing allegations and “other matters” (these thought to be the certain dissenting players in the team).
Sure, it is accepted Younis Khan is a man of honour. But match fixing allegations have been part and parcel of Pakistan cricket since time immemorial. Younis could have condemned these accusations in strongest possible terms in front of Jamshed Khan Dasti, but the fact that he resigned made his reaction appear as extreme as the accusations that were levelled against his men. Younis received the sympathy of the nation and was reinstated as captain, however critics were right in predicting that this episode would divert attention away from Younis’s failure as a batsman and captain in the Champions Trophy.
Ijaz Butt is the comedian of Pakistan cricket and it is a wonder he is still Chairman of the PCB after repeated failures. Ijaz
Butt’s standard of incompetence can be discerned from his unwillingness to sack Malik as captain just before Younis was appointed as captain (it took a Presidential order to convince Butt to remove Malik as captain). Also, recently Butt gave a statement that the English media should focus more on county cricket performances of Pakistanis. Butt gave Kaneria’s example to say that Kaneria has been ripping through line ups, and PCB should get the credit for these performances. However, maybe Butt should realise that even mediocre players like Yasir Arafat have been performing commendably in county cricket and international cricket is very different. If the PCB Chairman is going to make stupid statements like that, what will the world think of Pakistan and PCB? How long do we have to tolerate this incompetent, uncouth and uneducated man as the Chairman? The Pakistan Senate has already predicated that it seems Butt never went to college because he is running the PCB like a grocery shop.
There are villains in this Drama, too. Malik, Misbah and Akmal are playing politics apparently. As always, no direct names have been mentioned; there are only rumours and controversies. Yet it seems fishy Younis has openly stated that certain players have reservations with this captaincy and that there is some kind of disunity. In dramas and movies you see the villains perishing sooner or later, yet in this Drama, Malik and Akmal are still there in the team, vitiating team morale and almost encouraging mediocrity. It is sad jealousy and bias based around regionalism still affects the team after Pakistan as a country and as a cricket team has lost so much because of it. But, that is how it works in Pakastan.
Speaking of regionalism, the reaction of the Karachi lobby to Younis Khan’s resignation was extreme and unprecedented. The Karachi lobby was instrumental in the sacking of Malik and appointment of Younis Khan as captain, and it is thought the lobby also wants Afridi as the next captain of the Pakistan team. The anti-Punjab stance of this lobby is worrying although it is submitted that its intentions are to weaken regional influence in team selection.
Afridi is also playing a little drama of his own. For some reason Afridi has decided to temporarily quit Test cricket at a time when he is batting more sensibly than ever and his bowling has significantly matured. What has caused Afridi to make this ridiculous decision? Test cricket is dying in Pakistan and Afridi could have been an asset for the team.
Pakistan is the laughing stock of world cricket and this Drama must now end. The Chairman needs to go, the elements playing politics need to be removed. Malik needs to be sacked anyway because playing him means accepting mediocrity. Malik has recently given an interview saying that he will be selected for Pakistan’s next Test assignment. This is shocking considering that he is one of the reasons why Pakistan is considered a mediocre Test team. Younis Khan is unstable and unpredictable and a person of his temperament must not be captain. Now he wants to play T20 cricket again although earlier this year he was adamant T20 is not for him. Younis should set an example and retire from ODI cricket. Pakistan is pinning hopes on Shahid Afridi to lead the team and weed out mediocre players.