Saturday, January 29, 2011

Kiss without a Hug

If Mumbai is the home of Indian cricket then Eden is the heart where every player dreams to showcase their best. India has lost their world cup campaign in 2011 before it begins with the Eden flop show. The Mecca of Indian cricket lost an opportunity to host the match between England and hosts India to Chinaswamy stadium at Bangalore.

However, ICC reluctance to give a 12 day deadline to Cricket association Of Bengal to get their house painted Pink and red has the undercurrents of old battle-lines drawn between Sharad Pawar now ICC president and Jagmohan Dalmiya former BCCI president and now CAB top boss.

It was on the same turf in Kolkata in Taj Bengal that Sharad Pawar and his regime managed to wrestle power from Ranbir Singh Mahendra in 2005. The winds of change loomed large but Mahendra under Dalmiya’s patronage got into a legal tangle to keep elections at bay. However, Sharad Pawar managed to turn the tables on Dalmiya with his team of Shashank Manohar and Praful Patel. The Maharashtra sugar baron turned the heat on Dalmiya with a little change of sides from Rajeev Shukla.

Pawar followed the victory run with a series of court cases against Dalmiya. The baniya from Kolkata felt the heat in the next elections at home when then Police Commissioner Prasun Mukherjee opposed him in the CAB elections. Dalmiya knew he had to win this battle to fight the war against Pawar. Prasun with the support of BCCI tried every trick in the book but failed to uproot Dalmiya from his home base in Eden Gardens. Dalmiya smiled after winning the elections on the home turf and was indicative that the ugly battle had just begun. Dalmiya was left in the cold in BCCI meeting that followed but the baniya in him helped as he got around Shashank Manohar. The newly elected BCCI president from the Orange City dropped all charges against Dalmiya to help the CAB top boss breath easy. The boss of Eden had the last laugh when the battle against BCCI was won.

However, people who know Pawar know that his razar sharp memory forgives but never forget his enemies easily. Pawar as ICC boss knew from the word go that Eden was behind schedule as was Wankhede and two stadiums in Sri Lanka. Pawar showed leniency with Wankhede his home turf and the other 2 stadiums but when it came to Eden he was quick to take a knee jerk reaction to take the India –England game away. Dalmiya never goes down easily and got the Kolkata Municipal Corporation behind him and got BCCI to send a letter to ICC to reconsider the decision and to give Eden a 12 day grace period to paint the Mecca of Cricket red.

Pawar is unhappy with the way BCCI and Shashank dropped charges against Dalmiya. The Maratha knows that embarrassing Dalmiya is the best way to rock the Kolkata ship which is due for elections this year. Pawar may have managed to win the battle again but Dalmiya is an astute statesman. He has more friends in the cricketing fraternity to stage another comeback in cricket administration. Sharad should not rock the sinking ship so much that it becomes a titanic and memorable.

ICC should come clean on the yardstick for not giving Eden the extension while other defaulters managed to escape without the media glare. Pawar may be going all out to embarrass Dalmiya but it is unsportsmanship to corner a person but not humiliate him.

The Pawar-Dalmiya battle continues but what fun is it when you get a kiss without a hug.


Post a Comment

<< Home