The Average Man

Yes, we lost a Test. Yes, the umpiring was horrendous. Yes, the charges against Harbhajan Singh might not hold up in a court of law. But do we have to go overboard like this? One television channel dragged out Harbhajan’s mother, that expert on racial slurs and leg-before appeals, to share her thoughts with us.

How do we drop so quickly into us-and-them mode? The media paranoia feeds itself. If one channel demands an apology from Australia, another displays greater patriotism by asking for the Test result to be nullified. Pundits push themselves to the head of a gathering trend. Or, if they are [Navjot] Sidhu, suggest that Indian bowlers should kick the umpires as they approach the wicket to bowl. If this is what a Test player feels, what of the regular effigy-burners and professional naysayers?

That mythical creature, the Average Man, wants the team to return home, we are told. Politicians speak for the Man in the Street (who is there because politicians, in their rush to defend the millionaires abroad, have omitted to build a house for him).

“This is not about cricket,” Sidhu thunders, “This is about national honour.” The President-elect of the ICC, Sharad Pawar, is upset. This is not something trivial like farmers committing suicide, which he can ignore in his other avatar as the Minister of Agriculture. This is the real thing. The BCCI runs the ICC and the media run the BCCI.



1 Response to “The Average Man”

  1. 1 aboyfromindia January 10, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    I have written a post on the sydney test..and some aussie bloggers tried to spam it ! Just wanted to share my post with proves that the aussies are at it again..this time on the internet !

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