Monday, 3 November 2008

Take a bow, Jumbo

Jokes, like jokers, have a limited entertainment value, beyond which they don't amuse, only annoy. Having wagged indefatigably for 18 long years, finally no impish tongue would ask in jest whether Anil Kumble is the fastest slow bowler or the slowest fast bowler.

The subsequent avalanche of applauds was inevitable, perhaps equally so was overlooking the message sent out by the man who just walked into sunset. Predictably, we read only the words, not the deeds.

Those who care to see beyond the numbers, each of his 619 Test wickets tells a tale -- of the triumph of the trier. It says you don't need to be born special, you can work your way and become special. It says success is not an exclusive domain of the wunderkinds and toil is as important as talent.

Indeed, he didn't have the prodigious turn of a Shane Warne, probably because he was not the man for exaggeration. With his brand of leg spin, he would rather probe than poach. And yet, he was successful!

Certain success stories make their way into syllabus. Kumble's should be one, for it spreads hopes and talks about life. It says how an ordinary man can go out and make his own destiny, rather then just playing the part destiny had scripted for him.

Unlike a Warne or a Tendulkar or a Muralitharan, he was no quirk of nature, endowed generously and destined for immortality. Kumble learned and earned it. He was out and out a proud, self-made man.

His achievement transcends the limited boundary ropes of the game and spills into life, for it advocates the triumph of simple and yet so necessary values like commitment, integrity, discipline and dignity.

And it also says nice guys do finish first.

In the heart of heart, I know Kumble was surely not the best. Warne probably has a more logical, statistical and aesthetical claim as well to that. But Jumbo, when I have a kid and he or she grows up, I would love to see him/her persevere through pain, just like you did with a bandaged jaw in Antigua and a stitched finger at Kotla.

Warnie, I'm still in awe of your wile and guile and would have your poster in the study room of my kids. But sorry mate, they would rather have Jumbo as their role model.

30 comments:

Naked Cricket said...

and take a bow, Som.

Straight Point said...

amazing post som...this is the most fitting tribute that i have read so far...

i am with you and mine kids too will follow him as role model...

they will have to...if they want better understanding of life...

thanks for the wonderful post maan...you certainly made my day...or evening? :)

Som said...

NC, thanks a lot.

Som said...

SP, did we have a more dignified cricketer ever?

Trideep said...

A fitting tribute as SP said... What kumble will be remembered for is his dignity & his never-ending spirit to fight...

pseudo intellectual said...

absolutely incredible post s'da. can i link this on my blog? i couldn't come up with a better tribute if i wanted to!

Som said...

trideep, absolutely. In an era where players hide and feign injuries, AK shone as an exception.

Som said...

Titli, do you really need to ask?

Anonymous said...

A true tribute that jumbo deserved. I wish Anil Kumble sees it. Truly SOM u have spoken (written) our hearts out. Thanks for the post.

Som said...

Anonymous...Thanks. Unfortunately, Kumble is a leggie. Had he been an offie, he could not have ignored Doosra. I've my hopes pinned on Harbhajan.

Rahul said...

Kumble would be remembered for his dignity on and off the field. Hope that would be the legacy he (and other seniors) leaves for the Indian teams of the future. While it is always good to beat Australians playing their brand of cricket, it is more satisfying to overcome them with our 'desi brand', the game played by Kumble, Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar.

Som said...

Rahul, you made a good point. Do we really need to ape the Oz to beat them in their own game?
Does aggresion necessarily mean bad-mouthing opponents like they do?

Instead of following in the footsteps of the unpopular champions, the Aussies, probably the Windies of the past could be our better role model.

scorpicity said...

Ah a classic... very nice.

Remove the poster of Warne, they might start sending dirty messages when they grow up LOL... just kidding. Nice, sweet tribute.

Anonymous said...

right scorpicity... Som must remove Warne's pic -

Som: Why not try a Sachin Tendulkar pic

Som said...

Scorpi..point taken. Was about to toy with the future of my future kids! Thanks buddy!

Som said...

Anony, I would have Ten-dulkar posters.

Poonam said...

Brilliant tribute to a man, who truly is greatness personified.

Mads said...

The best tribute ever....hats off to u, well written, dude...we'll all miss jumbo :-(

Som said...

Thanks ma'm.

Som said...

Welcome to Doosra Mads. Do drop in occasionally.

Christopher Poshin David said...

take a bow......I too wrote about him

visit my new post on two legands of cricket at
http://christopherdavid007.blogspot.com/2008/11/legendary-farewell-for-two-legends.html
looking forward for your thoughts.

Som said...

CP David, thanks for dropping in and keep coming:)

Shubho said...

Good insight into Kumble's secret of success....uncommon things told commonly!

Anonymous said...

hey doosra.....

Have been waiting since long for something on dada and India's emphatic victory from you. When are u posting next?????????

Som said...

Shubho, thanks that you liked it. Keep coming:)

Som said...

Anony...you won't believe it. My computer has crashed and the guy who was to fix and return is has not come back again! I sniff CIA conspiracy behind this effort to gag my keyboard.

Anonymous said...

For me....som... more than CIA it might be a conspiracy led by CA (Cricket Australia)to gag ur keyboard as they know that u would be bullying their players with your posts... :)

Som said...

Anony...didn't apply my mind to that aspect. Highly possible.

Anonymous said...

Hey Som... If it is so....Can we ask Raj Thackrey to help us and hold the Australians back from corrupting your computer.

This move will earn Thackrey international media attention. What say??? ;)

Som said...

Anony, thwarting all evil designs, Som's computer has just been reinstalled and I would hit back with vengeance. Expect dada tribute tomorrow.