December 18, 2006

Twirling and thrusting

What's the best thing about the twirling and thrusting here? That this guy put together an inspired -- and, I hope within a few hours, match-winning -- performance to back up the twirling and thrusting.

Sreesanth has bite to his bark, he's walked the talk -- choose your metaphor, really. And that, married to gutsy Test-match cricket from every Indian player, should win this team a famous victory -- like I said, within a few hours of this seeing air. May Sreesanth always retain that combination of performance and attitude, certainly through many more Test victories.

(And as an aside, it will be a victory that, once again, shows just how spellbinding Test match cricket can be. Take your stream of nondescript one-day games. Give me Tests, every time).

So I wanted to get this up before victory arrives. Sreesanth's antics in that clip are obviously directed at a man who has, famously, not walked his talk. Andre Nel is known for the jibes he directs at guys he bowls to but is no great bowler. Nothing quite like showing a guy like that where he can take a walk. (A reminder of a previous time that happened).

But apart from that, what is the difference between Sreesanth's and Nel's respective antics?

I mean, I open the sports page of the Hindustan Times today to find that Nel has been described as his team's "nastiest bowler".

But of Sreesanth -- who added to the twirling and thrusting by laughing "mockingly" at Hashim Amla after getting him out, photo on HT's front page -- we read that he "charmed and shocked in equal measure and left you breathlessly laughing", that he has "dramatic, belligerent showmanship" and a "spunky in-your-face attitude", that he "symbolised the spirit of the resurgent side." All of this should be "put down to to high spirits and an eye for an eye." And "cricket needs characters as well as character and Sreesanth is a delightful mixture of both."

HT even tells us that there is no real difference: Sreesanth is "doing to [South Africa] what Andre Nel was trying to do to India, only far more successfully."

So why is one of these men the "nastiest" in his team, but the other a "delightful" character?

Or put it this way: If Nel ever backs up his chatter with a bagful of wickets -- meaning, "more successfully" than he has done -- would he too be "delightful"?

11 comments:

Gautam Ghosh said...

well I don't think Nel would ever be described as "delightful" ...mad, yes (that's what Shastri called him on air :-) but never delightful.

I guess it's Sreesanth's cherubic looks that makes it seem 'innocent' and 'delightful'.

Who's danced like that on a field after Roger Milla more than a decade ago, anyway?

Gautam Ghosh said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Not much into cricket..

1. but it could be the youth and looks as the earlier commenter has said.

2. It could also have something to do with nationality. Are the SA media agog with praise for our wunderkind?

3. 3rd place could be success as DDS as pointed out. Adulation lasts as long as he is doing well.

regards,
Jai

PS- Notwithstanding the above, I find some aggro from any side entertaining in cricket.

Vasanth said...

Everyone is loved as long as they are good and deliver.. When the momentum shifts, it becomes entirely different. There will be day when commentators say Sreesanth isn't delightful but I am not sure if that will be the case with Nel (the other way around).

Truman said...

Like one commentator on Star sports said the other day (I think it was Harsha Bhogle) -- I've never seen a bowler behave so badly on the field and get away with it so many times.

But I am a little scared for Sree. Animated characters have made it to the top but, blame this on their hot head, seldom stayed there.

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Anonymous said...

Well, I guess Sreeshant went way too far - a la Ganguly (remember the shirt waving antic?). And just because the win-starved Indian team managed a big overseas win, everything seems pardonable. Haven't we been complaining that the Aussies get away with a lot on field?

Indians have been known for there semblance on field. Lets leave sledging for the Aussies.

Anonymous said...

I like it.

Anonymous said...

it is delightful because this guy made India win and Nel screwed the Indian's happiness....it does not require Einstein to figure that out. And what do we have as a reference to call Nel nasty??? Hindustan Times....

lod said...

Agression comes in different forms. I think Rahul Dravid can be aggressive on a cricket field, but it's clearly very different from Sreesanth's aggro - just as effective, i think, but different. Sreesanth's success didn't come from all that dancing, but from his lovely upright seam and putting the ball in the right areas, he shouldn't forget that.. Agree with Jai's points, but he shouldn't have sledged Hashim Amla though. It's ok as long as he sticks to the likes of Nel and Smith, who dish out as good if not better than they get, pick on the sledgers not the nice guys..

Sidhusaaheb said...

I hope Sreesanth won't go the Hirwani (read flash-in-the-pan) way!