Yesterday, the 2nd of the October 2008, was full of two stories, the 139th Birth anniversary of Gandhiji and the umteenth comeback of Sourav Ganguly. The news media, though did not bring in a correlation, I think, it is perfectly justified to compare the likes of Gandhiji's satyagraha with Ganguly's "Fight for No.5". They both have failed, withdrawn from the war, hounded by the masses(read media) yet emerged victorious. Gandhi was though fortunate enough to get the support of a lot of people, all the supporters of Ganguly dont have their voice reach a lot of people.
Sourav, we must accept is not a good test player. Not one to be seen with the likes of Brain Lara or Sachin Tendulkar. But hey, he is still a fine player like Shiv Chanderpaul, Inzi-ul-haq or even Matt Hayden. While, Chanderpaul remains the best in the Windies till date, Inzi left Pak, taking that great skill of batting baton, without passing it to anyone. Ganguly, however didnt have such a good luck. He was always compared with two of the greats the game has ever seen, Sachin and Dravid. It is no wonder that he is third on that list, if there be a comparison. So, why is dada victimized? I don't see a cricketing logic behind this, but a lot of marketing factor.
Think about this,
Sachin, he is our icon, legend, the no-nonsense, no-controversy, the god of medern cricket in India, he can sell, Colas to Biscuits to Insurance to you.
Selling point: Best and greatest
Rahul, awefully out of form in the past year(except the last few innings), but he is still the great wall of India, anyone calling for his head will always be a idiot in cricket, rightly so.
Selling point: Reliable and gritty
Kumble, he is not as great as Shane warne or as cunning as Muralitharan, but yet he is a fighter, remember his straped on bowling in Windies to get Lara out? Or the 10 for in the Delhi tests?
Or even the hero cup batting with Srinath while his mother and Grandma watched with the same intensity as we all? Or the no non-sense press statements, ever since he took the captaincy?
Selling point: Fighter, symbol of respect
Well, that where we are left out with two of the nicer players of our time, not the greats though, Sourav and Very Very Special Laxman. Ganguly would be remembered as the best indian captain, One who can give it back to the opposition and who lead India through to the finals of a World cup, never his game. Even his "god of the offside" title were not his selling point contrast to Laxman, for whom "I-get-my-tail-up-when-i-see-the-baggy-green" has been his sole selling point.
So, now when Ganguly is no more the captain, he is no more seen as a leader. He was made a captain when Azhar outsted, Tendulkar refused and Kumble wasnt a one day specialist at a very earlier. right from the early 2000-01 we knew dada as a leader, it didnt matter if he didnt hit those runs, his team selection, bowling changes were spot on. So when he was sacked of the captaincy, there is no selling point. The dada factor wont sell. He might still hit those occasional gems and still contribute as always. But the fact is simple. However, hard they try, dada will still be considered one of Indian crickets greatest leaders unless Dhoni's mavericks perform consistently;even in the finals.
So, the next time, you see some channel calling for his blood, its not their outright cricketing sense. Its just that he is no more a marketing material. Rest all are plain rubbish.
After posting this blog, Dada announces his retirement succumbing to the rubbishes, but to me he walks away with his head held high!
I'm just curious :)
3 years ago