Saturday, March 05, 2016

When Dilshan had an Isaac Newton moment!

Cricket can be funny sometimes. Especially when you least imagine it. Not to mention if the game is evenly balanced and anything can happen anytime. How's this for funny incidents - 
  • Outfield player attempting to field the ball for a single run, the ball passes between his legs and goes for a boundary - Funny
  • Fielder diving to field the ball and his shorts betray him - crass but funny
  • Certain batsman's fixation with a run-out (either him or his team-mate) - Funny
  • Batsman attempting a shot but the ball finds its way towards the pelvic region - extremely painful but funny
  • West Indies players celebrating a wicket by dancing - funny and entertaining
  • Lance Klusener and Allan Donald messing up while attempting to complete the winning run against Australia in a World Cup semi-final match - funny, only if you are an Australian!

Assume the whole cricketing world is watching a game you are part of and you somehow make a complete 'fool' (for lack of a better family word) of yourself. It may not have an impact on the game as the ones mentioned above but will be totally worth it. That's what happened years ago with a Sri Lankan player.

Dilshan hit by ball on top of head
Massaging the embarrassment
OK, lets just start getting things in perspective here. The bowler bowled the delivery. The batsman swung wildly at the ball and missed it. This incident itself is funny if we think from a batsman's angle - poor footwork and just a wild swing. But that's not what we are talking about in this clip. The wicket-keeper took what he thought was a catch and started celebrating without the umpire even declaring the verdict. Some can find this funny too. But still that's not what we are talking about. What happened afterwards made the whole incident a laugh riot! He threw the ball in the air (typical way of celebrating a wicket) and then the ball came down towards its rightful owner. Talk about taking things head on!

I have always failed to understand why fielders celebrate by throwing the ball in the air. Imagine batsmen throwing the bat in the air when they score a century? If you want to celebrate, run towards the bowler or a nearby fielder, hi-five them, even do chest thumping the way Lee-Hesh used to do! If you get the wicket of a dangerous opposition batsman, dance around and have fun. The sound systems across most stadiums are top-notch now and they play loud music when a wicket falls. Dance when the music starts. One can do all these 'harmless' acts and can even invent a new way to celebrate like some footballers do. If you are not the creative kind, then simply pass the ball to the umpire - which is what they are supposed to do anyways after a wicket! There is absolutely no reason to throw the ball in the air unless you want to prove to your team-mates that your throw reaches the heights.

Don't get me wrong. I used to celebrate this way all the time. Whenever I took a catch, I used to throw the ball in the air, but, unlike other players, I used to catch the ball again. Maybe I was scared of the same incident that Dilshan went through or maybe I needed to show everyone that my catch wasn't a fluke. But then, don't take my word for it. I have not even represented my university in a game of Cricket - just my housing society, class, school and college. 

Dear cricketers, please find a better way to celebrate a wicket. The world has moved ahead, its time you do the same with your celebration.

PS: If I happen to play Cricket again and manage to catch a ball to trigger a wicket falling, I will still celebrate the same way. Guess, some things won't change.

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