Thursday, 16 July 2009

Last of the Mohicans

Sourav Ganguly would vouch, Andrew Flintoff often struggled to keep his shirt on.

This time, Freddie sheds flannel to retain pyjama. Test Cricket, on its part, can surely find a lonely, dingy corner and shed a tear or two to mourn the exit of the Last of its Mohicans.

I’m afraid we won’t see his like again. The era of 24-carat all-rounders is just behind us. Welcome to a new world where imposters in the all-rounder’s garb would fool around.

ICC rankings would want us believe Mitchell Johnson is world’s number two all-rounder and Chaminda Vaas ranks fifth. But then ICC’s understanding of the game rivals Paris Hilton’s grasp of rocket science and both come with the unmistakable ‘Not To Be Taken Seriously’ tag.

In his approach, Flintoff was a throwback to an era where the popular notion was that an all-rounder should be good enough to merit two places in the side, one for bowling and another for batting.

Now, take Garfield Sobers out of the action. He could bowl pace and spin, at times both in the same over, keep wicket and then hit a poor Malcolm Nash for six sixes in an over. He could be Clark Kent’s estranged sibling endowed with equal supernatural ability and a markedly better sartorial taste.

Soon after the Kapil-Imran-Botham-Hadlee quartet left the scene, batting pie-chuckers and bowling sloggers thronged the dais and statistics – often confounding than enlightening – were thrown up at regular intervals to prove their all-round credentials.

You don’t have to strain your eyes to see the clowns fooling around. Underneath the garb, Shane Watsons and Yusuf Pathans are essentially bits-and-pieces players of some utility but anything but all-rounders.

Unlike them, Flintoff, in between his injury rehabs, sent down real 90mph thunderbolts from an awkward angle and then returned to wield the willow with impunity.

More importantly, he was match-winner with both.

His foibles only endeared him and make no mistake, it’s people like him who ensured bums on seats.

Above all, Flintoff was the rare flicker of flair in an otherwise mass of mediocrity that is English cricket.

I insist, Test cricket is all about romanticism and if you don’t like, you are free to frequent the nearby Twenty20 circus.

MCC diagnoses Test cricket is dying and their optimism simply baffles me. They might declare Michael Jackson alive!

Pix: PA


Satrajit said...

Its a sudden and quick end to a test career which was apparently not bad either.

May be he wanted to prove Dhoni that he is no longer a test cricketer and might well be considered in the playing 11 of CSK in the next IPL.

Som said...

Satrajit, I don't think Flintoff has anything to prove to anyone else other than himself. MSD used him well, in fact persisting with him even when he was taking battering. Whatever, it's sad for Test cricket but Chennai Super Kings surely can rejoice.

straight point said...

test cricket can ill afford to less player to watch to...which brings crowd to the game...

Som said...

SP, take away KP and what you have in the name of England is a dullard XI which no dullard would spend money to watch and that too for five days.

Viswanathan said...

I liked the one about MCC's optimism.:)

Som said...

Ottayan, you didn't like 40 of the 42 lines! My effort wasted...

Viswanathan said...


Som said...

Liked the smile though:)

Gaurav Sethi said...

Som, you've made a movie out of a molehill.

Som said...

NC, Flintoff can be, at worst, over-the-hill but never milehill. I take strong objection to that.

PI said...

yeah, unexpected news. and sad. even though i didn't like him much.

Som said...

Titli, not that I was a great fan of him. But considering how mediocre English cricket is, he was an exceptional talent.

Anonymous said...

I like watching [url=]football[/url] on [url=]bbc football[/url] chanel. How about you people?

Anonymous said...

How do you hold out the burgeoning viruses and Trojan horses, prowling in the cyberspace? There is any quantity of plans like spam, adware, spyware, malware and hackers completely ready to assault at the earliest option. Without having the expertise of web end users, credit card quantities or passwords can pass onto the improper palms. These security troubles want to be dealt with urgently and right here are two important suggestions for you.

one. The initial step to guard your laptop or computer is to install a good virus scanner and firewall. Let us confront the details, Microsoft's firewall is just not sufficient, and so are from your ISP and modems. No modem arrives with constructed in antivirus computer software. Hence you have to acquire and put in one particular. You can choose from a number of virus scanners and firewalls, but reputable amongst them are: Norton, AVG, McAfee, and ZoneAlarm. AVG and ZoneAlarm are totally free software program.

two. A [url= ]best private proxies for scrapebox [/url] will help on the web protection. This server hides your IP, which is unique and unchangeable even if you want to. This IP identification ought to be kept key. If a cybercriminal accesses it, he can get your info, and use it to your detriment.

In this complete approach a proxy works discreetly. When you try out to access a website link, the browser informs the server in typical circumstances, even though a proxy server guarantees that it receives this information initial, and filters the info. Even if the net server attempts to know your IP, it will only be accessing the IP of the proxy server. Even so, the proxy server can access all your facts, and for that reason you ought to go for a proxy server which you can count on.

Given that Proxy Servers aid Online Protection., you must know how to established up one. Faulty set up can direct to an unsafe proxy - for this reason meticulously comply with the different measures.

one. A very good and anonymous proxy is a have to. The Web has a complete whole lot of paid and cost-free proxy servers. Even though paid out proxies offer better anonymity, totally free proxies can also be opted. You should zero in on a great Proxy Server which will help your On the web Protection.

two. Immediately after you have decided on your proxy, you require to configure your Internet browser to use it. This method is diverse from one particular to an additional browser. If you are using World wide web Explorer, here is how to install the proxy. Open Net Explorer, go to World wide web connection, simply click on link, decide on the suitable button for LAN or dial-up relationship, and simply click the options. Empower use a proxy server, and kind IP of proxy - which you must have pointed out on a paper, just before beginning to put in, adopted by port in the respective fields. When you simply click on "Okay" 2 times, you are now having a Proxy Server for Online Stability.

three. It is not adequate even right after you have finished configuring your browser. You just cannot neglect it. If you have opted for a totally free Proxy, it could not be operating after some time. Therefore, you should keep an eye on the proxy, and continue to be protected. Use Proxy Servers for Online Security and it will reduce you of whole lot of problems.