One of the costliest slap...
If MTV gives viewers 'One Tight Slap', someone else gives that in a cricket field. By now a lot of hysteria has been generated over a match between Mumbai Indians vs. Kings XI Punjab in the on-going IPL season. The latest I read yesterday was that the inflammation is sorted now and things are back to normal and entertainment continues. Back to sixes, fours, and not to forget the cheerleaders dancing.
After the angry slap incident, a panel investigated on this foolhardy behavior of Harbhajan on the field which amounts to level 4.2 offence under the ICC Code of Conduct. Level 4.2 relates to physically assaulting a fellow player, match official or spectators. The final verdict related to this issue was rendered by the IPL match referee and former Test stumper, Farokh Engineer. Bhajji was slapped a 11 match ban and he can't play in the remaining IPL matches.
But these brought to my mind few points.
1. This one is purely related to the economics part of it. This slap will go down in history as one of the costliest slap ever. In this case, both Harbhajan and Sreesanth would be immortalized with the former as the conferrer and the later as the recipient of the most high-priced slap. Harbhajan was auctioned for a whopping $8,50,000 (approximately Rs 3.4 crore), the buyer being Reliance Industries.
Just simple mathematics shows close to what Harbhajan earns and what he losses in this opera. Assuming that there are 14 matches he is going to play for IPL.
Gain = (3/14)*3.4 = .73 crores INR.
Loss = (11/14)*3.4 = 2.67 crores INR.
Bhajji, 'yeh thapad tujhe baahut mAhAnga paada dost.'
2. This is kind of a googly for me. Is Harbhajan that unfledged, a school kid, or is he a professinal who has played for India for close to 10 years in the test and one day format of the game ? Does he not know that his heroics and skirmishes will have ripple effect later. He knew what happened in Australia a couple of months back, was that sequence not enough to ring alarm bells ? Is caution the key for him or his short temper attitude? I guess Bhajji knows what's the best answer is for him.
3. I feel like laughing to see poor Sreesanth, crying like a kid after the slapping incident. I personally feel that Sreesanth's weeping was more of drama and role-playing than reality. The entire crowd and TV viewers know how he makes faces, good, bad, ugly on the field. I can equate his act to that of Italy's Marco Materazzi, who re-acted as if a missile had pierced his heart, when he was head butted by Zidane. Man, c'mon in the practice sessions in football, they are trained for more severe physical onslaughts. Anyways, after lot of brassy news over the cheerleaders, this incident added a new twist to IPL and made for some interesting news.
4. Everyone knows, at least I consider this, if I put it the right way, Mumbai is the Mecca of cricket in India. Bhajji donned the captaincy hat because Sachin was injured. So didn't he not realize that, he had a whole lot of more responsibilities and obligations as he was replacement for someone, who is one of the biggest legends of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar. The way Bhajji behaved, displayed it was a smacking not only on Indian cricket, but also on the city that breathes cricket and is passionate about it to the core. Think of Sachin Tendulkar, how many times in his career he has been haunted and tormented by the media and others during his rough patches, when marked by under-performance. How many times, has he raised his voice even while replying in the press, forget being aggressive with the reporters. He uses his bat and keeps cricket lovers stunning with the passing years, his bat does the speechmaking and not his histrionics.
Also, everyone knows that IPL is all about cricket with oodles of entertainment, glamour, money, etc involved in it. Come to think of it's sheer business, barons and tycoons have pumped in tremendous amounts of money, so each of the teams would try to outshine the others. But that doesn't mean that with a loss, someone is going to behave irrationally. Fine, agreed that Mumbai team had lost all its initial matches, but that doesn't mean the team lacks talent. It's just that this is a different fast-food format of cricket, and there is whole lot of new experimentations (ex: player X from Y region is not playing for Y region but for Z region.). Also many people forget that Mumbai has the maximum number of Ranji Trophy Titles (a pure and original format of cricket sans the showbiz), i.e. 37 which as far as I know is the highest number won by any team. So what if they are little behind in this new phaata phaat generation cricket.
Bhajji, was this too much of gyan for you?
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