Monday, August 10, 2009


The Problem With Indians


Specifically Indian cricketers, is that they love speaking out of turn. They love to blabber even when they are totally out of their depth, and in an eternal quest to be perceived as intelligent they cloud necessary and invaluable debate by introducing irrelevant and nonsensical arguments. Case in point: Yuvraj Singh, on the issue of WADA-conducted drug testing in cricket.

At the outset, let me categorically state that I am in full support of anti-doping initiatives taken by various sporting bodies the world over. However, it is also my opinion that the 11 Indian cricketers rebelling against WADA's draconian testing conditions have a very valid point.

Forests aplenty have been turned into pulp to print opinions galore on this issue and while I don't intent to be the root cause for the loss of another tree, I must admit that I find it bemusing that the powers-that-be are unable to apply the basic human right of privacy (and to some degree the presumption of innocence) when drafting these contentious contracts. Surely the solution is as simple as demanding a phone number on which the athlete is called 6-12 hours prior to a test so that their whereabouts can be ascertained. Surely?

Alas, I digress. Yuvraj Singh's latest rant about drug testing intruding on his "family" time is a load of utter hogwash for two reasons. First, Yuvraj spends too much time in bars and clubs to have any left to spend with his family. Second, even if this were to be proven false, I fail to understand how a 5 minute process of urinating in a cup detracts from his 'family' life. Some might contend that after spending so much time in various establishments, Yuvraj may have no trouble at all in filling up many little plastic cups.

Like many before him (and probably like many after him,, until a capable media manager is hired by the BCCI) Yuvraj has clearly missed the point. His pals are not arguing against the infamous Whereabouts Clause because of an encroachment on their family time, but because their unplanned schedules do not allow them to nominate times and places three months in advance with much accuracy and because of security implications for some of the 11 nominated individuals.

To understand these valid arguments does not require an inherent knowledge of astrophysics. Harbhajan Singh (who, mind, hardly spoke English prior to 2001) clearly knows what he's on about, why is Yuvraj so in the dark? By spouting rubbish pertaining to irrelevant and unrelated matters Yuvraj has once again provided easy fodder for those oppose the stand taken by the Indian players.

If an individual has a penchant for being seen in the media, is it really so difficult for him to at least understand the issue before opening his mouth? If I were MS Dhoni and Sachin Tendulkar a stern phone call to Yuvraj to keep his trap well and truly shut would already have been made.

Then again, what can we expect from the likes of Yuvraj when BCCI officials embarrass themselves thus, "What's the need for cricket to become an Olympic sport?"


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