The expression on the face of Saurav Ganguly when he challenged the catch taken by Gream Smith of his batting in the match on 1st May as revealed by the Television was highly interesting. It appeared as if it was Ponting marching towards the umpire as he is always known to do in similar circumstances as a fielding Captain.

Everyone knows that Saurav plays his Cricket with “Passion”. But we also know that Ponting is a specialist in intimidating the umpires with his growling face and high pitched, finger pointing arguments. Even he normally restricts his antics only when he is fielding and normally walks out without a challenge when given out.But Saurav seems to have now outsmarted Pointing through this “Menacing March To Umpire” .

It  needs to be pointed that in this incident it was Shane Warne who was  right in pointing out that  Saurav had no right to order the Umpire to refer the decision to the third umpire the way he actually did.

The refusal of the catch by the third umpire was no vindication of Ganguly since it appeared from the replays that  the Catch was clean and there was not sufficient grounds to give the benefit of doubt to Ganguly. The third umpire succumbed to the pressure and perhaps followed the famous W G Grace  dictum that the “Crowd had come to see him bat and not the umpire raising his finger”.

What the incident has revealed is that the IPL umpires have no guts to stand up to the Saurav intimidation and IPL management is also not able to resist the temptation to play to the crowd’s demands.It appears that Indian boys are learning more from the bad guys in other countries rather than teaching them the good manners which Indian players like GR Vishwanath, Nawab of Pataudi of the earlir generations and Anil Kumble of the current generation represent.

A  dispassionate observation is that the intensity of passions promoted by the IPL as evident in the promotional ads especially the ad of the Kolkata Knight Riders  is doing a great harm to the tag of Cricket as a “Gentleman’s game”. It appeared that Ganguly was just playing out the ad theme is the actual game arena and it is time that such ads are removed from circulation as otherwise it may become a bad example to youngsters.

Bhajji’s slapping of Sreeshant and Ganguly’s menacing march  towards the umpire are two incidents in which cricket lovers will consider as indicators of how the commercialization of cricket by IPL is likely to damage the game in the long run.

Naavi 

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