Let's give the dude his due. Andrew Symonds is a blogger's delight. An English-born Australian cricketer with West Indian roots with follies of all three ethnicities stuffed inside the 1.87m frame.
Now beat that.
So much so that I don’t mind trading Sachin Tendulkar for Symonds.
Come on, Tendulkar can’t be a debater’s delight. He evokes awe, not argument. He is too polite to polarize and I’ve always been intrigued more by the horn of the devil than the halo of the saint.
Once again, Symonds provided me the fodder for thought and here goes a list of seven cricketers who, I suspect, could have been wine bottle labels in their previous birth.
1. Andrew Symonds: The undisputed Baron of Booze, the Lord of Liquor, the al-Khalifa of al-cohol. There was not a rehab strong enough to bottle up his high spirit;
2. David Boon: His incredible feat of guzzling 52 cans of beer on a flight from Sydney to London is still intact. Pity that Symonds had to go when Boon is part of Australia’s selection panel. Smacks of lack of fellow-feeling somewhere.
3. Andrew Flintoff: Cork high and bottle deep, Flintoff discovered the alcoholic properties of the Caribbean Sea during 2007 World Cup and was about to drain it before sentries came to the sea’s rescue and an environmental disaster was averted.
4. Jesse Ryder: A firm believer that Bacchus airdropped him on dry earth with a specific purpose. Takes the opener’s job seriously even outside the field. Royal Challengers stats suggest no one opened more cans and bottles than Ryder in IPL II.
5. Herschelle Gibbs: Another rehab-proof alcoholic. One of his neighbours once refused his offer to donate blood fearing it might make him tipsy.
6. Praveen Kumar: Proudly carrying the tri-colour. To his credit, he doesn’t get into drunken brawl unless the other guy is a doctor.
7. Yuvraj Singh: When intoxicated, has a peculiar penchant of attacking his namesake, a tendency that can be traced to the sheer self-detest cemented in his subconscious.