After fifty-something days of enthralling cricket, unscripted drama and raw emotion, Lalit Modi and his cronies give us a gloating, self-indulgent and cringe-worthy speech by the chief protagonist, an apallingly mimed performance by "International R&B Superstar" Akon and an impromptu beauty pageant. Where's the trophy? Where are the real stars? Why the stolen thunder?
I care not for Modi's graciousness for his supportive wife and daughters - he is an administrator and looks best when not parading himself in front of the nearest TV camera. I care not for Akon yelling "make some noise India" in the middle of Johannesburg, South Africa. If I was Adam Gilchrist and Anil Kumble, I wouldn't give two cahoots for a pre-packaged Katrina Kaif dancing to Pussycat Dolls' candy floss / made-for-America version of the legendary AR Rahman's Jai Ho.
Whoever organised the sequence of events proceeding the final delivery made the biggest mistake of their life and should pay for it with their career. Harsh maybe, but oh so fair.
In an attempt to replicate the glitz and glamour of the Olympics' opening and closing ceremonies, we have been subjected by countless cricket administrators (unfortunately, mostly of Indian origin) to unadulterated kitsch. Most have abysmally failed to recognise that even Olympics' organisers ensure that each and every medal presentation ceremony is the pinnacle of the event - superseded by nothing, bar nothing.
Lalit Modi has taken the product-isation of cricket that one step too far. With these latest shenanigans, he has proven to be yet another BCCI office-bearer to whom that proverbial line that should not be crossed, is invisible.
Why is that such selfish and self-absorbed egotists succeed so spectacularly in lowering the colours of their entire nation? Why is it that the every appearance of Lalit Modi on our TV screens transforms into just another cringe? Why is it that the presentation of a trophy and associated medallions, two minute interviews of both captains and 15 minutes of natural, uninterrupted live coverage of the winning team soaking in the atmosphere needs to be replaced with two-bit, talent-less individuals with no sense of occasion, nor geography?
Lalit Modi, Mr T thinks you're a fool. And guess what, he ain't the only one.
PS. Congratulations to Adam Gilchrist and the Deccan Chargers for winning a fantastic game of cricket. Nothing more need be said.
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