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Thursday, February 2, 2012

No respite as another defeat chases - should IPL be adored ?

There was some respite and  Mohammad Amir, the Pakistan fast bowler,  is out of  Portland Young Offenders Institution in Dorset after serving half of a six-month sentence for his part in a spot-fixing scam. Amir is expected to spend the next few weeks in London before returning to his native Pakistan. He will meet his lawyers to draw up an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the five-year ban imposed on him by the International Cricket Council.  As one could recall, the  Judge, Mr Justice Cooke, ruled at Southwark Crown Court that the affair was "so serious that only imprisonment will suffice". Butt was sentenced to two and a half years, Asif was jailed for one year, and Amir for six months. Mazhar Majeed, the players' agent, received a sentence of two years eight months. Under the terms of UK law, all were eligible for release after serving half their sentences.

But there was no respite for the Indians – whether it was the traditional 5 day Tests which did not last that long or the newly invented T20 – the result continues to be the same even when playing an opponent led by a person making his debut.  Australia at Sydney on 1st Feb 12 made a huge 171 for 4 aided Matthew Wade 72 and David Hussey and contained India to 140/6 beaten by 31 runs.   Reportedly watched by the largest ever crowd at Sydney numbered 59,659  (in India the count is never accurate as there would be more than capacity accommodated with more free passes, security and sundry), the new T20 captain George Bailey who cold not find a place in CSK sneaked with a win in his debut match.  Wade replacing Brad Haddin strengthened his case for the T20 WC to be held at Sri Lanka.  The sizzling Sehwag as also other opener and middle order failed again ! Since their seven-wicket win against Australia in October 2007, India have gone on to lose 13 of their 23 Twenty20 matches. In the same period, they have also lost all three clashes against Australia. In their only previous Twenty20 game in Australia, India lost by nine wickets after being bowled out for 74.

Now a days selection perhaps is based on IPL – there is none from the Ranji winning Rajasthan and only Ashwin from the finalist Tamilnadu but there are hosts of players picked on IPL performance.  Much was expected of Rohit Sharma who was out for a golden duck to Hussey.   Vinaykumar who was forced to succumb in his debut test had the satisfaction of accounting Warner.   The IPL success Rahul Sharma was injured when Travis Birt smacked back the ball to his face – he had to go off the field and later returned. 

So another defeat and one cannot but feel that England is repeating.  The IPL auctions would soon hit the headlines and people would be buying tickets for IPL matches where there could be different set of heroes.

If you feel the defeats are too humiliating then perhaps boycotting IPL would be a good option.  The players, the organizers and all those making money need to understand that it may never be T20 Vs ODI Vs Tests but National interests must be supreme than that of a Club. – and that would be achieved if  the IPL match is played to empty house as it happened during the recent Ranji finals

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

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