Is cricket just about batting, bowling and fielding? No. To make the sport even more attractive, we have a fourth skill and that is called commentary. But as cricket on the field has lost its traditional touch with time and a bunch of supermen have taken over from the gentlemen, the commentary off the field has also lost its charm, thanks to some cliché-trundling windbags.
Yesterday, a former Indian cricketer named Navjot Singh Sidhu, who also happened to be an MP in the recent past, was pretending to be a commentator in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match between the Rajasthan Royals and Mumbai Indians which was being played in Ahmedabad.
We feel the man was pretending to be a commentator because he was not doing any commentary as is stood by the term, at all.
Sidhu's pathetic commentary
Once he was heard saying amid all the ruckus his words were creating: "Cricket is being played in a sacred land". He said this in connection to Mahatma Gandhi, whose Sabarmati Ashram is located in Ahmedabad. What kind of bizarre connection was that, Mr Sidhu?
This author switched off the television after a few more minutes because Sidhu and his ilk were unbearable.
How it feels when commentary becomes a perfect anti-thesis to a thrilling game of cricket? The thought caused a concern, more so after the exit of the legendary Richie Benaud just a few nights ago. Amid all the chaos and noise, where can one find some intelligent, witty and normal expressions?
Better to watch the matches on TV silently nowadays
The garrulous and unimpressive breed of commentators today make the option to watch the matches with the television on a silent mode a more wise one. We, the unfortunate television spectators today, not just miss the voice of Benaud but also peace whenever a match starts on the screen.
Sidhus, unlike the Benauds, don't know where to stop to make the words worthy
The Sidhus, Shastris and Gavaskars only irritate the senses, either by verbal diarrhea or by repetition of the same vocabulary. There are still decent voices that make sensible remarks but they are far too concerned with the technicalities.
Richie Benaud's witty observations are missed today
Australia were playing Zimbabwe in a group match in Nagpur in the 1996 cricket World Cup. Steve Waugh had taken a fantastic return catch of Guy Whittal and Benaud, who was in the commentary box, quipped: "... Waugh picked an orange from Nagpur" [See video below]. We all know Nagpur is known for oranges.
If a foreigner like Benaud could make such instant witty observation on the situation, why Sidhu just manages to irritate his audience by making non-sense remarks?
Ask Vinod Kambli.