Monday, 5 May 2008

The rogue returns

There is something eerily uncanny about the rogue. He’s like a scam that umpteen hush-up efforts can’t suppress. The froth that will inevitably and eventually surface. Almost a leitmotif in a Wagnerian opera. Let’s give the devil its due, Shoaib Akhtar is an unputdownable story with intrigues galore and he may not be the best ambassador of the game, but like cricket itself, his career is all about uncertainty, occasionally glorious and often notorious.

Now that the IPL passage has been cleared by the appellate tribunal, the maverick is back. Indeed, it would have been a pity if he was missing from the mix. It’s not only his craft but also the theatricals that make Shoaib almost an indispensable character in the entire razzmatazz. In the end, it was poetic justice that he was eventually allowed to figure in the foofaraw which he has been so in love with throughout his career.

I’m not sure about his contribution but let’s admit he brings with him that nuisance value and adds to the entertainment quotient. That extraordinarily prolonged run-up, the glare, the snarl as the ball leaves his hand and that spectacular albatross celebration – Shoaib in action is one of the most compelling sights in contemporary cricket.

He maybe the child of hype but batsmen in their relatively vulnerable moments would tell you that the sight of him galloping along that never-ending run up still sends shivers down many a spine.

Welcome to IPL, Shoaib.

Mohammad Asif must be heaving a huge sigh of relief that he won’t have to share the dressing room with the erratic ‘Rawalpindi Express’. Umar Gul, however, is not similarly fortunate. Harbhajan Singh has already set the benchmark in compatriot-bashing and Gul would do well to exercise a little caution. Picking up a dressing-room fight with Shoaib has resulted in grave consequences in the past and history, after all, remains the best teacher.

Image: AFP

11 comments:

Poonam said...

Not just Shoaib and Gul. Sourav Ganguly, not a docile man by any stretch of imgination, is also in the same dressing room. What an inflammable mix!!!!!

To my disappointment, Ricky Ponting -- another one belonging to the hot-headed brigade -- has left.

Had he been there with Shoaib, I firmly believe, Kolkata Knight Riders dressing room would have been witness to many slapgates!

Som said...

Poonam, I disagree. Ganguly is a man of principle and his ire is reserved for beefy British all-rounders and retired Australians with initials like GC (add SW to that list after the Jaipur match).

Q said...

Gsnguly would be glad to see Shoaib on his side and not bowling the bouncers at him.

Maybehe's the boost KKR needed.

Straight Point said...

i liked this new phrase...
'unputdownable story'

though asif will be heaving a sigh of relief but what about KKR bowlers??

last heard they have already started hiding bats....

Som said...

Q, I think that's what prompted Gangulg yo opt for Shoain when the auction took place.

Q said...

I think it was SRK who could get an infinite supply of cocaine for Gauri with Shoaib around that prompted him to get Shoaib at the auction.

Som said...

SP, I have this feeling Shoaib would thoroughly enjoy the adulation and the lack of pressure. Sending down just four overs, the workload just not seem too big either.

Som said...

Q, SRK is a schrewd showbiz guy. I think hye knows pros n cons of having Shoaib in the side and for that amount. My hunch is he would be used to promote SRK films as well.

Q said...

Yep Im sure he will be. Shoaib may even star in one of his productions soon.

Shoaib and SRK are also good friend. Im sure uve seen the pics ive posted in a number of my blogs.

Naked Cricket said...

As long as Dada gives Shoaib 2 2 over spells, he may even bowl his full quota.
good stuff som. Btw was VVS dropped y'day?

Som said...

NC, we are told VVS injured his hand when a Dale Steyn delivery hit him and hence could not play.

But to give him hid due, Laxman won't hesitate dropping himself. Remember how he turned down the ICON status and settled for less amount to allow the team invest that money on other players?