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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Cricket T20: Spot Fixing Shadow Over IPL-5!


When we witness brazen display of dirty money, glamor, sleaze and greed of IPL-5 it seems to be inevitable sometime or the other or maybe it had been happening all the time not exactly coming to light. A sting operation by a television news channel yesterday exposed the evil of spot fixing in Indian domestic cricket, Twenty-20 cricket and the IPL. More specifically, in the T20 format which has been promoted just for commercialism and for making money.

Making money is the basic instinctive characteristic in any modern human being. Some make it the hard way honestly, some make it discreetly and some make it by hook or by crook. In IPL temptations are limitless. The top cricketers who get astronomical amounts to play in a particular franchise concentrate mainly on maintaining their ‘marketability’ or ‘saleability’ for next IPL seasons and therefore they are a bit protected from fixing games unless tremendous greed overpowers them. But the fringe cricketers, who do command a price albeit with huge disparities compared to the ‘pricey’ one, are never sure of making it to the next season and therefore they are the most vulnerable parties for fixing temptations. The sting operation confirms this trend fully.

Other television channels have been devouring the story with utmost enthusiasm, because as the IPL sells anything concerning the spectacle sells too. Though they have been taking opinions from all cricket experts and the Indian cricket Board there is a basic problem here. Who, pray, could be expected to give an objective opinion on this most putrid phenomenon? The IPL money has been benefiting, gagging and influencing a whole lot of ‘paid to comment’ people and of course, the very news channels have been flush with IPL commercials and promos. How on earth could they speak anything against the grand spectacle?

The Indian cricket board (BCCI) had come out very strongly on this and said that corruption in any form of cricket would not be tolerated at all. The Board had an emergency meeting today and suspended five cricketers who were actually seen in the television sting. An enquiry committee had also been instituted to look into the matter. But, pray, are they authorized to speak about curbing corruption leave alone actually doing it? We need not speak about what Lalit Modi did right from the beginning of IPL, but even in IPL-5 there had been widespread reports that ‘bought’ cricketers were paid undisclosed sums that did not at all match the official figures shown. Surprisingly, this practice included everyone—from top to the bottom levels. Now, these supposed under-the-table deals could be termed as corrupt practices, if we are not wrong. Then, what about the movie stars, film directors and even film technicians who have been visiting the IPL studios and stadiums with unending regularity? Are they just friendly and ‘cricket-loving’ visits or how many ‘deals’ have been fixed all the time every time? If leads eventually found by the enquiry committee lead directly or indirectly to the IPL authorities or franchises can we really expect some tough action? Unlikely, naturally!

Finally, how does it matter anyway! Fixing or not, corruption or not the ‘cricket lovers’ of this great country would always throng the IPL matches, because they only want loads of fun, throat-fulls of screaming, most necessary outings and with loyalties just like one-night-stands . And, they do it with their own money! The cynics cannot even give the excuse of a waste of taxpayers’ money!

Only nincompoops like me keep on complaining! How irritating! 



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