July 29, 2010

Offbeat

Botham helps Cameron connect

ESPNcricinfo staff

When the British Prime Minister is visiting India the best way to strike a chord is to talk cricket, the quintessentially English game that now has a distinctly Asian flavour. Addressing employees of a software firm in Bangalore, David Cameron connected by mentioning Ian Botham, whom he called his childhood idol. “Many of you in this room would have grown up revering Kapil Dev. I did the same with Ian Botham,” Cameron said. Then, possibly just to be safe, he mentioned the T word. “And Sachin Tendulkar, the Little Master, is so talented that wherever you’re from, you can’t help but admire him as he hits another century.”

And though the seat of cricket’s power has shifted, for all practical purposes, from Marylebone to Mumbai, George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, showed his knowledge of the game’s nuances by quickly correcting an analogy. According to the Wall Street Journal, one business leader thanked Osborne for making his trip to India within 10 weeks of taking office, likening it to hitting a six in the first over of a Test. Osborne’s response was swift: “A batsman hitting a six in the first over of a Test isn’t likely to survive at the wicket for too long. I have every intention of staying the long haul.” He obviously isn’t a Sehwag fan.

Jayaditya Gupta is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo in India

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Keywords: Offbeat

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