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Whose Team is it Anyway?

by Mahek

We're well and truly into the third season of the IPL and just like the first two editions we have a team that just can't seem to win. It's official: Kings XI Punjab are the Kolkata Knightriders/Deccan Chargers of 2010. A lot of talk has revolved around captaincy and the impact players have disappointed.

Cricinfo ran a pretty cheap piece on the big disappointments of this season and it was no surprise that four of them were from Kings XI. But the most damning aspect of their presence was the amount of money they're being paid. Yuvraj Singh, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Shantakumaran Sreesanth are making over $2.8 Million a season. You could probably add Brett Lee ($900,000) and Irfan Pathan ($925,000) to the list.

This begs the question: Who is in control of the side? Sangakkara has cut a forlorn figure everytime things haven't gone his way, Jayawardene led the side one game and it looked better but still crumbled under pressure, and it's best not to talk of Yuvraj's involvement of lack thereof.

There was, however, one man last night who seemed to believe. He is just another domestic cricketer using the IPL to make some money and maybe impress the selectors. He has captained the Indian Under-19 side in the past, shown glimpses of his ability with a couple of rousing innings, taken the gloves when his captain was banned, and retained them even with the skipper coming back. Step forward Manvinder Bisla. You made yourself visible last night by making sure you were inconspicuous. You were neat behind the stumps (That wide off Lee was unfortunate), made sure the bowlers were motivated, applauded pretty much every fielding effort, and even had the instinct to go up to Shalabh Srivastava after the over in which Sreesanth dropped a sitter, something your captain or icon player should have been doing.

It is a pity such intangibles will be lost on your franchise and the national selectors because you don't strike a gorgeous pose when you hit a cover drive or don't have the ego to make yourself visible to those fans who are looking for cheap fun. But I hope someone like Shane Warne sees what you're about. You did take the attack to him and did well until you were foxed by the great. Maybe Warney will come back to the IPL next season and want you in his side. Players like you show leadership is not about entitlement, it's all about initiative and how far you're willing to go for your team even if you don't get the glory.


Gaurav Sethi said...

Good stuff Mahek.

Unfortunately, like me, most will remember Bisla being admonished for his shot selection - dismissal, and y'day's modest strike rate.

From the lesser names, only a big showing gets them kudos, where as, for the flam fret even a cameo wings it - what, no pieces on Yuvi's knock yet?

Look at KKR swap Che and Manoj Tiwary, invisible players as they are.

Aditya said...

Everyone forgets Bisla, he was in the Deccan Chargers Squad last year and they missed a trick by not even playing him once!

and even when an article was written on him, the attacking 75 he scored in B'luru is not mentioned!

Hoping DC get him back to the squad and give him a run!

and the IPL should have some part of the pay packet on performance related bonus sort of thing like football clubs do, so that the performing local stars get some well deserved cash for their exploits!