Sunday, August 05, 2007


The great Athers (aka Michael Atherton) has given his verdict on the 'beamer' Sreesanth bowled at Pietersen, calling for Sreesanth to be banned. From the way the ball went off at a tangent, it seemed like a genuine slip.

Frankly, I like the way the Pommies seem to be suddenly terrified and vulnerable! It's all good when they indulge in their puerile acts (jellybeans and what not), but when they're in the firing line, it's all very unfair. Their coach wants the stump-mikes to be switched off, so that his (foul-mouthed) wards can give their jaws a good workout. The Indian cricket team has become quite adept at giving as good as it gets when it comes to sledging and it looks like the poor Pommies find themselves on the backfoot on that count.

But it still doesn't take anything away from the fact that Sreesanth behaved in a rather abominable fashion by shoulder-charging Michael Vaughan. Siddhartha Vaidyanathan was spot-on when he suggested Sreesanth was just "buffoonery over brilliance". It is a Malayali tendency (so I have noticed) to throw a tantrum when things don't go your way - being over emotional is our forte!

SV has a very valid point when he hopes Sreesanth doesn't go down the path (less) trodden by some other cricketers. He referred to four blokes - Sadanand Vishwanath, Maninder Singh, Vinod Kambli and Laxman Sivaramakrishnan - who were simply mind-blowing in terms of cricketing talent only to blow it all away. Sada could be forgiven his decline, as it followed the death of his parents within a few months of each other.

I had written a few lines about Kambli and Siva here, talking about Kambli's salad days. Harsha Bhogle has a brilliant article (written way back in August 1998) about Pravin Amre and Siva. Back then (apparently), Siva was in the process of plotting a comeback to first-class cricket, having spent almost a decade in the (cricketing) wilderness. For reasons unknown, nothing came of it; but it's nice (in a way) to see him on TV these days, although some folks say they'd rather be deaf than listen to Siva's inanities spewing from the commentary box. There are a few lines which stand out from Harsha's article, where he quotes Sachin Tendulkar as saying how he was a huge fan of Siva and it was an honor to have him bowling to him in the nets at Chepauk (before the Aussies visited in 1998, when Sachin made Siva bowl into the rough outside the off-stump, so that he could take on Shane Warne).

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