destination india

Sunday, November 27, 2005

make and break

There is a saying - rules are for fools and a corollary, records are meant to be broken.
A record is an acknowledgement of ones superiority over others. When Mahendra Singh Dhoni played the mind blogging knock of 180 plus, he became the first wicket keeper to do so in ODI. It is a wonder that wicket keepers have never got the recognition they deserve. In fact, they should be better run getters because, squatting behind the stumps, they know the turns and twists that the ball is likely to take once it hits the ground. That is his job – he has to anticipate the behavior of the ball and position himself accordingly. Therefore, he should carry his knowledge to the field when he faces the bowlers of the opposition camp. In this context, the name of Farokh Engineer (the Brylcream man of the 70s, born 25/2/1938) deserves a mention. He not only kept wickets in the test matches but also opened the Indian innings.

That Guinness book of World records and the Limca book of records owe their popularity to the fact that all over the world, someone somewhere makes a record and someone else breaks it like Sunil Manohar Gavaskar – his 10,000 runs in test cricket has already been overhauled, his highest number of test centuries will be the next one to bite the dust. Sachin Tendulkar has broken the record for the highest number of appearances in ODIs when he participated in the 4th ODI against South Africa in Kolkata – it would have been more in the fitness of things if he had presented his admirers with a more remarkable innings to mark the occasion. People remember an achievement better if it carriers with it statistics worth remembering – but, a record is a record all the same.

Brian Lara continues to set new records – and he does them with nonchalance, as if its all a part of the game. No media hype, no extraordinary expectations – he goes to the field and tries to better his previous performance. In the bargain, he lands up with a record! Of course, we seldom see him in ads – that may be a reason why he can concentrate more on the game and devote his spare time to improving his game. When he reaches a milestone, both he and his countrymen rejoice.


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