Wednesday, 27 May 2009

The IPL animal farm and an African safari

Lalit Modi visited the Kruger National Park. Big deal. I visited the Rhino and Lion Nature Reserve, roughly 40 km north-west of Johannesburg, more or less at the same time. And like him, I returned to tell the tale.

Modi had the chutzpah to post the vlog (video blog, for the uninitiated) of his African safari on the official IPL website! A lesser freeloader, I’ve got a blog of my own for that.

Cutting out the crap, IPL was the recurring theme in my mind during my African safari, and even when I was roaming around in the streets of Johannesburg, armed with my camera.

My skills, or rather lack of it, with the camera may not give even a Chunky Pandey, let alone Mike Pandey, a good run for money but if Modi doesn't care, so do I.



Pix 1: Sheepskin Sleepers at J’burg flea market. Shopkeepers vouched supply was directly proportional to the KKR fleecing in IPL.



Pix 2: A foodstall banner outside Wanderers taken way too seriously by some batsmen.



Pix 3: Where Jesse Ryder would invariably be spotted banging his head against wall, demanding extension of the happy hours.



Pix 4. Scientific evidence of how KKR inaction...KKR in action, I meant...can be the answer to insomnia.



Pix 5. Kishen Kanhaiya of Fake IPL Player fame. My guide gave this startling piece of information that male Ostrich's thigh turns pink when it's ready for mating. Quite a sensible thing. Since it allows she-Ostriches to either steer clear or get close to the male. A similar system in human society would have been handy. Indeed, the human superiority blabbering is nothing but vainglory.



Pix 6. Rhino Dada. You need a hide like his to cop so much of humiliation and still hang around.

Finally a video. May look like the future of some of the IPL franchisee owners but actually Zulu dancers! video

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Brace for the virtual pandemonium!

When BCC! members come together, miracle happens.

Geometrically speaking, it’s the diagonally opposite case of Shah Rukh Khan, Sourav Ganguly and John Buchanan coming together, when it needs miracle to make things happen.

As the race for the ugly trophy enters the last leg, the crème-de-la-crème of cricket blogosphere – and that naturally excludes yours truly – would go into a virtual huddle to give the Sambit Bals and Arun Lals a good run for their money.

So the Ankits, the Siamese twins from Mumbai, would pitch in, shoulder-to-virtual shoulder with Gaurav. And when I say Gaurav, I’m not necessarily alluding to the anorexic ape jumping up and down at the Sony Max studio.

John would be on hand and to clear the air, he has a surname which is not Buchanan. Ottayan, Achettup and Raja too would be lurking around in the corner but mind you, they can’t be cornered easily.

Pankaj would be insisting that his points are straight, while Nikhil, battered and bruised by Gilchrist’s semifinal knock, would moan about Jatman’s demise.

Q would be in the queue as well, exporting loads of T20 fundas, interrupted by the shy smile that apparently floored a certain Mayanti Langer in the recent past.

So you know, Bored Quickie is the place to be this evening, from 1930 IST to…sorry, can’t really predict the end.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Of KKR’s breach of trust and Centurion vignette

Let's face it. It's virtually like finding your girl friend in your best friend's arms.

How else you describe Kolkata Knight Riders' triumph over Chennai Super Kings?

It was nothing less than a breach of trust, deviation from norms and infringment of acceptable practices.

They don't probably realise the magnitude of the outcome but with this one win against Chennai, KKR shook the trust of its followers, who could not believe they have been sold down the river by the outfit they used to swear by and now swear at.

After all, consistency was not an issue with them, unlike others! It takes a painstaking effort to put together such an amazing string and one such callous win was enough to mar the effort.

Meanwhile, a similar breach of trust takes place at Doosra. I had decided not to post during my stay in South Africa but then like KKR, I guess I’m also entitled to my occasional moment of indiscretion.

So, here I put together a 7-point vignette from the KKR vs CSK match at Centurion.

1. LaxmanSivaRamaKrishnanGodKnowsHowManyMoreGods does the rope reporting from the boundary line. Black troussers, black jacket and well-oiled pitch black mop. He flashes his illuminating smile at someone and it simply takes me to another place. To be exact, I feel I'm inside a mine in Kimberley, struggling to believe my serendipity of discovering an entire string of diamonds embedded on the wall!

2. KKR co-owner Jai Mehta sips his tea in the hospitality area. You tend to sympathise with him. After all, the team didn't give him any champagne moment. One more thing. The poor fish seems to have taken the defeats to heart and is ageing fast. At this rate, and considering KKR’s determination to maintain the standard, or rather lack of it, he would look like Juhi Chawla's father by IPL III.

3. Some of the purists squirm in their grave while those alive go to fly a kite as Dhoni plays a cross-batted straight drive that nearly decapitates Suresh Raina at the non-striker's end. Moral of the story, pushing your skipper to run an extra run poses serious threats to your life and limb.

4. Czarina of foofaraw Mandira Bedi interviews motormouth Srikkanth. Stop giggling, for I find their conversation rather enlightening. I check the net and there is no scientific evidence to suggest that our tongue is anyhow connected to our brain.

5. Just not at his best, Ajantha Mendis bowls in a trance. A sergeant with Sri Lanka army, his mind probably is back home where his colleagues are busy decimating LTTE guerrillas. The other Sri Lankan spinner, however, does well. Prabhakaran is dead and Muralitharan is deadly, realises Ganguly.

6. KKR CEO Joy Bhattacharya and Jai Mehta roam around in the hospitality area. The thoght that gnaws at my vitals is why still the team didn't have much of either joy or jai in IPL II?

7. Dhoni argues with umpire over a free-hit. You realise it’s Chennai’s do-or-die match. Murli Kartik refuses twice to catch Dhoni. You realise it’s KKR’s do-and-die tie.

Friday, 15 May 2009

Doosra goes SA in pursuit of IPL!

The distance was killing. Neither my vision nor my television was giving exactly what I wanted to see.

So here Doosra sets off for South Africa, even though for just four IPL matches.

While I don’t foresee myself posting here daily, I'm committed to do so at Bored Cricket Crazy Indians (BCC!).

For Doosra readers, I plan at least one post on my return on May 22, apart from a few exclusive photographs.

Till then, enjoy.

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Behind the KKR wall


A deathly silence greets you as you cross the unmanned gate. Inside the premises, umpteen tents dot the place and you feel you have strayed into a field of giant mushrooms.

Fortunately, they have plastered the inmate’s name on each of those tents and I decided to follow the protocol and start with the skipper.

The Baz seemed buzzing inside but lo! He was not roaring but actually snoring! Poor guy. Caught napping, always.

Considering how his and the team’s form have given him sleepless nights, only a man with a boulder for a heart would wake him up. But as I’m about to step out, Baz sprung on his bed and moaned “Stop the Lappie, I’ll go for the toss.”

I offer him water but poor Baz dropped the sitter. I offered him again and this time he fumbled and spilled half the content before finally latching on to it. In a state of trance, he drained the glass, tossed it back and then murmured, “I’m still the skipper, John. Let me go for the toss.

My heart bled for him but I left him to his state and entered Ajantha Mendis’ tent, to see something that gave me goosebumps.

Stripped down to bare minimum, Mendis was lying prone on the cot with one guy shaving his head and another applying some sticky stuff on his skull.

I nudged the third in the tent and whispered “what’s the matter?”

Poor fish. He had just overcome the trauma of the Lahore attack but Yusuf Pathan’s Super-Over terrorism probably left indelible scars on his psyche. So much so, he wants to quit cricket and wants to open a kiribath stall in Moratua,” he whispered back.

By the way...

Before he could finish, I found myself in the tiger’s lair. But instead of Ganguly, a gang of four was inside, engaged in intriguing activities.

Arindam Ghosh and Wriddhiman Saha, having swapped tracks for batik lungi and netted vests, looked agitated over a game of ludo while Ashok Dinda was looking at the mirror, admiring the headband, which, I’m told, can only be surgically removed.

I cleared my throat to draw attention and asked if Dada was around.

No, he has gone out sulking. You know what? He’s called Sulk Hogan these days,” Ghosh giggled.


And gora coaches call him albatross,” Saha chipped in.

Laxmi Ratan Shukla was dipping his brush in some solution and was rubbing it ferociously on some metal scraps, which was not quite recognizable from where I stood.

Shukla cast a dismissive eye on me and deadpanned, “I heard everything. You people better come and brush dada’s chains or I’ll tell him what you said.”

I left the commotion behind and ran into Mashrafe Mortaza, who looked lost, sitting outside his tent.

Mian bhai! Tell me, is anything wrong with me? Do I look like a scheme?

Scheme!”

Yes, these guys keep saying that I’m actually an Indian scheme to revive Bangladesh’s GNP.”

well…err…I better be going.”

Buchanan’s tent was empty too. In his absence, Andy Bichel and Matthew Mott had occupied the place and were grimly pondering future, completely oblivious of my presence.

I heard John would be fired and they would get Jyoti Basu to do the job,” Bichel said.

Why?”

They said KKR is a house divided and the Basu lad has presided over a fractious coalition for some donkey’s ears,” Mott explained.

You think we got a chance?” a worried Bichel asked.

No mate,” said Mott.

Only Steve Waugh has some chance. They have changed emigration rules and Tugga is the only Australian allowed in Kolkata.”

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

EXCLUSIVE: Chris Gayle’s parting speech at KKR camp


Let’s face it, we ah in a cool hole maan. I sniff there is a Babylon* in KKR and I donno who’s the bloody bald-head*.

I come from Jam Down* all upful* for some jamming but kiss my neck*! We dug a hole for us and we no more ah the Mr Mention*!

You Johnnie and your effing ideas! Chuck that bean maan and get a new one. I’m sure the nurse had bounced you on your bean soon afta' yoh birth and the floor cracked.

And that multiple-fathahood idea stinks too. So stay away from my dawta*.

Yu Brendon the brain-dead. Skip skipping skippie. Just nowt your mug of Tui. A Rastafarian has more dawta* than runs you scored.

And for Jah’s* sake, get rid of those vulgah tattoos. If can’t, get rid of that arm awltogetha’, maan. You can’t baat worse, can you? You can then win maatches single-handedly maan!

Awnestly, it looks awful, jus’ like graffiti in a wall in Kolkata. I wonda’ no maan came and relieved himself on it yet!

Here you Dinda. Get a life maan and chuck that Bandu*. In Jam Dung*, only women weah that. Dennis Lillee bowled with headband but thaat was in last millennium. You no Lillee and this is no 20th century. Buy a time machine with the bucks you got and join us next year, you Bhuttu*.

Murli, stop being a Bobo*. Loosen that obnoxious snake-around-neck, or you’ll asphyxiate yourself, ovastan * you Bubu*?

Finally, Um happy that the Battybwoy* boss is not around. Him a fish*! The other day he tried to kiss me in the corridoh. I collared the bugga’ and he squeaked he wanted to see if the coloh sticks!

And I-Man* don’ like when he screams Gay-le, Gay-le when he sees me. I’m fine being Chris. Jah guide * maan, may Jah bless you.


(Pix: PA)
P.S. Considering Gayle’s speech had a generous sprinkling of Rastafarian mumbo-jumbos, Doosra offers a glossary:
Babylon: Negativity of a system;
Bald-head: Person involved in Babylon;
Jam Down/Dung: Jamaica;
Upful: Positive;
Kiss my neck: Expression of wonder;
Mr Mention: Talk of the town;
Dawta: Girl friend/woman;
Jah: Lord;
Bandu: Hair band;
Bhuttu/Bobo: Fool;
Ovastan: Understand;
Battybwoy/Fish: Gay;
Jah guide: Rasta farewell;

Friday, 1 May 2009

Dance Shah Rukh, dance!


To fling my arms wide
In some place of the sun,
To whirl and to dance
Till the white day is done.

Then rest at cool evening
Beneath a tall tree
While night comes on gently,
Dark like me.

That is my dream!

To fling my arms wide
In the face of the sun,
Dance! Whirl! Whirl!
Till the quick day is done.

Rest at pale evening...

A tall, slim tree...
Night coming tenderly
Black like me.
(Dream Variations by Langston Hughes)

###

In the middle ages, once you are bitten by a venomous Tarantula, it caused hysterical ailments and the only cure was dancing Tarantella till you drop.

Considering how Kolkata Knight Riders have been lowering the bar in IPL with mind-boggling consistency, if Shah Rukh Khan behaves like a Tarantula-stung, only those with a boulder for a heart would find fault with him.

And the man knows how to sidestep his way out of the woes.

Casting couch...err...vote is just the red herring. SRK is back to what he does best, apart from stammering that is. Witnesses vouched, it was quite a dard-e-disco at a Mumbai builder's marriage party where SRK danced his woes away.

A cool Rs 2 crore cheque in his pocket, family sources assured SRK is feeling much better now.