Foul mouths, stupid ideas and inane telecast may make cricket the most gross and profane sport in the world


Yes my son

What does c**d mean?

Where did you hear it?

On the TV, all the cricketers say it, can I say it, too?

Cricket has gone down the tube. Truly. Watching it is a pain in the neck. The people who come up with these nutty concepts have all but ruined live telecasts.

First, my favourite whine.

Seems a little excessive to fine a batsman large sums of money for pointing his bat as evidence of his not being out to the umpire, pretty much what Virat Kohli did during the Asia Cup match against Pakistan. Compare that to the mob that surrounds a soccer ref or a hockey umpire and the protest is diluted vanilla in comparison. This anointing of the umpires as being above reproach has gotten a bit tiring. Seeing as how they make their fair share of errors and are willing conspirators in that absurd charade of making batsmen wait after they are out to see if the foot of the bowler didn’t cross the line my sympathy sort of dries up. If you didn’t call it when it happened you cannot fall back on replays to check it out. That is cheating. Not so long ago there was a lusty yell of ‘ No baaaalll’ and the batsmen went for it. That is not in the rules any more.

Foul mouths, stupid ideas and inane telecast may make cricket the most gross and profane sport in the world

Pakistan bowler Wahab Riaz (left) and Misbah-ul Haq during an altercation with Australian batsman Shane Watson during the 2015 World Cup quarter-final in Adelaide on March 20, 2015. AFP

With the World Cup and the IPL in rapid succession it is time to clean up the act. The other annoyance is the needlessly high number of angles and cameras and it detracts from, not enhances, viewing pleasure. They even have cams on the heads of the umpires. I truly do not want to see the umpire’s finger in dramatic close up.

This visual burden is further ruined by the endless graphics and the now inane information flung at the helpless audience. On Mondays and Tuesdays Pakistan win 45% of their matches. If there are clouds in the sky then India lose 56% of their games. If a mongrel walks across the pitch mid-game, Sri Lanka lose 33% of their games. There has to be a limit to this deluge of utterly pointless data and we seem to have crossed it. Leave the game alone and let us watch in peace. Rather they spent money on SnicKo and DRS and anything else that reduced the error factor.

Wonder who sits there working out these gimmicks and foisting them on us. In the current tournament they have a ridiculous semi-circle with clock hands that bounce around indicating the win percentage at a given time, these projections based on the most tenuous of inputs… besides making a mockery of the glorious uncertainty of cricket.

The replays they show now (from the present game to the past) are so frequent you lose track of whether you are watching LIVE or the done and dusted for the seventeenth time. It is almost as if they were all bent on taking the fun out of game by deflecting attention.

Perhaps where the most attention should be paid is on the close-ups of players and the easy lip-reading of the foul words used. The non-English equivalents make sledging sound like a conversation in a convent and it will come as no surprise if warnings are issued before the games start, asking adults to exercise parental caution if children are part of the TV audience and children are certainly watching.

In fact they make up 43.67% of the viewing public (go on, prove me wrong) and with so many mikes on the pitch, these kids are exposed to not just the mouthing of the vituperative but even the low-key sound that follows the obscenity, leaving no doubt in anyone’s mind what has been said. Rather swiftly the parlour game of guessing what the word is has now become redundant. Everyone knows including the commentator. Hindi gaalis are so easy to figure.

One way of probably ending the verbal ugliness is to issue red and green cards so that batsmen are docked runs or for a second offence sent back to the pavilion and bowlers blocked from doing their thing for say, 30 minutes.

These steps will at least clean up the act a bit because the way cricket is being broadcast it is on the top of the list as the most gross and profane sport in the world.

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Updated Date: Mar 03, 2016 13:06:00 IST

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