January 10, 2008

Harbhajan, cont'd

Mukul Kesavan

I was planning to write a follow-up post on the Symonds affair after Procter sentenced Harbhajan, when I came across what must be the definitive Indian take on the matter. A blogger called 'strangelove' has posted an exhaustive account of the Sydney Test on Prem Panicker's blog, Smoke Signals, which all of us should read to know what to think. He is withering about aspects of Australian behaviour without demonizing the Australians, he points out the infirmities in Procter's verdict without trivializing the alleged offence and he is particularly good on why Bucknor needed to go. 'strangelove' offers us a sane and morally defensible position on the controversies of this strange match. The post is titled 'The Most Discussable Match' and you can read it here

Mukul Kesavan is a writer based in New Delhi

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Posted by AkS on (February 26, 2008, 20:26 GMT)

I for one think that international cricket needs this sort of competitiveness. Who can argue after the last bland and unexciting world cup? In cricket where each bowler is on a personal mental battle with the batsmen, the high level of competition inevitably will lead to some taunting. That's what makes the game more exciting and creates more rivalries. And rivalries ARE good. Why are India and Pakistan matches the most watched? Because of a great rivalry. And now the CB final series is going to be immensely competitive, exciting, and just pure fun. You know the players are going to give it all they've got because it's about pride; Australia and India matches are going to draw huge crowds, which means more money and more celebrity. Everybody benefits: we as spectators, players as competitors, cricket as a sport, and the board as businessmen. I think ICC tries to make it a gentlemanly sport, which it really isn't and can't be so just let the game play out. That's my two cents.

Posted by Cheeky Monkey on (January 30, 2008, 0:35 GMT)

I am not really sure what the problem is here. As a mother of 4 children I have constantly called all 4 of my children "little monkeys or cheeky little monkey" so for 28years now I have been guilty of racism even though I am a white mother with white children (I just do not understand how this now is racist.

Posted by Aman on (January 28, 2008, 22:43 GMT)

3.3 Using language or gestures that offends, insults, humiliates, intimidates, threatens, disparages or vilifies another person on the basis of that person’s race, religion, gender, colour, descent or national or ethnic origin

So that is the code that he has been charged with, and i believe anyone who has called Harbhajan "Turbanator" in the past should be charged according to that code as well... infact it shall be a charge for 4.4 code.. afterall all humans were monkeys as well but having called harbhajan turbanator... its an offence to his religion, decent, race and his looks...

Posted by Sree on (January 25, 2008, 18:35 GMT)

Well, so many predictions above about some mauling indians would receive at Perth!! :) ... look on whose face the egg now is!!

Shut the aussies up a bit and look how their game was exposed! Anyway I think the question of whether Steve Waugh's team or Ponting's team was good is now solved.

Waugh's was better, they din't have to play nasty for their 16th win :).

Posted by Praveen on (January 18, 2008, 19:44 GMT)

I get the feeling that mukul or Prem Panicker wrote that piece. Calling yourself strangelove and then conveniently pointing us to the blog. Nice Try ! Q

Posted by Praveen on (January 18, 2008, 19:43 GMT)

I get the feeling that mukul or Prem Panicker wrote that piece. Calling yourself strangelove and then conveniently pointing us to the blog. Nice Try ! Q

Posted by saini on (January 17, 2008, 22:00 GMT)

no1 expects tailenders to bat ....top order was axed by bucknor that is why there was outcry....and monkey is not racist because what was said before should be taken into account. Like tony grieg said...a person can only take an amount of personal abuse and after that he will definitly say something bad.

Posted by Neil Pennell on (January 17, 2008, 21:22 GMT)

A disclosure to commence with. I'm an Aussie. I love the attacking manner in which the Australian players approach their cricket. I hate the fact that they sledge so much but if any Indian thinks their team is innocent in this regard they are living in cloud cuckoo-land. The ICC needs to be more proactive in dealing with onfield talk and giving umpires the authority to report such. Maybe the umpires already have that authority. If so, then we have even more reason to be concerned with their performance in Sydney. If Harbajhan called a Symonds a"monkey" then in light of the events on the Aussie tour to India he should be banned for 3 matches. If this was a response to him being called a "F.....g H..o" by Symonds then Symonds should be banned for 5. Finally, has it ever occurred to anyone that in the Clarke catch and Ponting "non-catch" that the players genuinely did believe they had caught the ball. I don't recall any Indian calling Dhoni a "cheat" over the Pietersen catch last year.

Posted by cricfan on (January 17, 2008, 19:13 GMT)

Slip51, if ponting was in control of the ball and his body he would not allow the ball to touch the ground with his hand over it.

Posted by Rajesh on (January 17, 2008, 18:29 GMT)

I have asked some black friends here in USA as to what term would be more offensive to them; monkey, bastard or effin homo. Guess what? Monkey turns out to be the least offensive and effin homo the most offensive. This ICC is making a joke of themselves with their schoolboy logic.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mukul Kesavan
Mukul Kesavan teaches social history for a living and writes fiction when he can - he is the author of a novel, Looking Through Glass. He's keen on the game but in a non-playing way. With a top score of 14 in neighbourhood cricket and a lively distaste for fast bowling, his credentials for writing about the game are founded on a spectatorial axiom: distance brings perspective. Kesavan's book of cricket - Men in Whitewas published in 2007.

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