Test cricket is dead, long live test cricket. #AusvNZ

What is tradition?

The dictionary defines tradition as a belief, custom or way of doing something that has existed for a long time among a particular group of people.

How long must something be around for it to become a tradition?

You might say it is traditional for you to do something with friends from school. That tradition is at most a few decades old. Others like wishing each other “good morning” or saying “namaste” are centuries old. Time honoured traditions are a relative concept.

Is something intrinsically valuable merely because it is traditional? Read More …

Age-cricket and the law

I came across this article on the internet today. It piqued my interest both as a cricketer and a lawyer.

The case is that of a young cricketer, Sagar Chhabria, who had challenged the BCCI’s process for verification of age before the Mumbai High Court. The Court rejected his birth certificate and his passport as proof of his date of birth and held that the BCCI’s process for verification of age was conclusive and binding.

By way of background, the BCCI’s process is the Tanner-Whitehouse Test which is used to measure bone density. Apparently this has been in place since 2012. A report from another similar case from September 2015, says that the Tanner-Whitehouse test apparently has an accuracy of plus/minus six months.

Sagar’s Tanner-Whitehouse test said he was 16 years and 6 months old and therefore ineligible to play in the under-16 category.

Let me tell you another story. Read More …

Freedom Series, Mohali test : In defence of spinners’ wickets

“An army may be likened to water, for just as flowing water avoids the heights and hastens to the lowlands, so an army avoids strength and strikes weakness.” – Sun Tzu

One does not have to have read the ‘Art of War’ to know that historically South Africans haven’t been the best players of spin. So, before the start of the test series, the Indian team made no bones about asking test match curators for pitches that turn.

Mohali was a wicket designed to strike at a weakness against spin.

There’s been a lot of chat on social media about this pitch not being “test match quality”. I simply cannot understand this. Not one ball spat at the batsman or really disturbed the surface of the wicket. The ball didn’t bounce alarmingly high or low. The turn was slow. The pitch was not turning square. The batsmen who applied themselves scored runs.  Read More …

Tu mera Viru : An open letter from a fan

Dear Viru,

This post is overdue. Not just overdue, it’s very late. Still it’s not as late as you played your favourite cut shot, leaning away to slash the ball over the waiting slips.

To be honest, it’s taken me time to finally come to terms with the fact that you will no longer play competitive cricket – no test matches, no ODIs, not even the IPL. That you will no longer essay any further classics. That I will just have to make do with old memories on YouTube.

Let me try to describe the thrill of watching you bat.

When Ganguly came out to bat, I knew there would be a silky cover drive. With Dravid, I knew that his forward prod would be technically correct. With Sachin…well…I knew that the ball was going to hit the middle of the bat.

But when you came out to bat the only thing I knew you would do is smile. Read More …