March 21, 2011

Chawla to dress in dog costume

Our reporter reports on a clever new strategy pioneered by India

[For immediate international release]

By Our Special Correspondent, Chennai

India’s World Cup campaign received a timely pre-quarter final boost yesterday with the news that the team is prepared to make legspinner Piyush Chawla dress up in a dog costume to assist their chances in the quarter-final with Australia.

Dhoni’s men noticeably perked up in the field at the Chepauk in their successful defence of 268 against West Indies when a small dog sprinted onto the outfield like a quadruped Jonty Rhodes, and, roared on by a crowd excited at the rare sight of something moving with speed and urgency across the outfield, ran rings around assorted groundstaff, policemen and Suresh Raina for several minutes. A somnolent atmosphere was enlivened as the Chennai audience enthusiastically saluted the heroic pooch’s Ned Kelly-style efforts to escape both justice and Munaf Patel.

The West Indies, having been accumulating comfortably at 154 for 2, but whose pre-match psychological preparation unluckily involved visualising that they were cats chasing a mouse, promptly collapsed in a cavalcade of batting ineptitude to 188 all out, as India found some penetration with the ball and zest in the field.

In the post-match press conference, Man-of-the-Match Yuvraj Singh, was asked by Andy Zaltzman, one of the international journalism world’s most fearless investigative reporters, whether India would consider hiring a dog for the Ahmedabad quarter-final, or making out-of-favour leggie Chawla don a doggie outfit and run around the outfield. Yuvraj, without a moment’s thought, replied: “Yes, if it works for us. Definitely.”

As the shockwaves reverberated around the cricketing world, other leading teams, unwilling as ever to be left behind in the race to perfect the latest of the technological innovations to shape the modern game, were rumoured to be considering making their fringe players dress up as animals. England were seen taking receipt of a pantomime-horse costume clearly sized to fit a Collingwood-Yardy front-back combination.

Sources close to the England team suggested that the Collingwood-Yardy nag will be used in the Colombo quarter-final for Ian Bell, the Sledgehammer Of Eternal Justice himself, to ride in to bat like Alexander The Great, intimidating Sri Lankan players and spectators alike.

Chawla himself refused to comment on the breaking news, but was later seen under the floodlights at the Chepauk practising barking and chasing some sticks.


Andy Zaltzman is a stand-up comedian, a regular on the BBC Radio 4, and a writer

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • testli5504537 on March 25, 2011, 9:58 GMT


  • testli5504537 on March 24, 2011, 14:39 GMT

    Rather poor by Zaltzman's very high standards.

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 9:21 GMT

    Good one Andy! I bet you are having a good laugh reading some of the comments (eg. Gaurav). I frankly, had a good laugh reading the comments - a good peak into the intelligence/ common sense among some of us...

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 8:28 GMT

    If it was about an Australian you Indians would have found it hilarious. No-one does righteous indignation like you guys.

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 8:17 GMT

    What's with the anti-dog lobby. Man's best friend. Fine animals!

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 6:13 GMT

    Are you out of your ****ing mind????? get a life #$$#^$##

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 5:16 GMT

    Won't it be insult to the 'stray' dogs...??? Dogs might go on strike and protest by wearing Chawla's face mask and roam around streets. First off all... it was a blunder by picking Chawla in WC scod by selection committee (Srik & co... any political influence from Chawla's side...?) and later it was a captain cool's (Dhoni) mistake by picking him in playing 11 even after his worst performance.

    Dhoni... u r loosing ur cham of captiancy... Awake... and perform/lead...

  • testli5504537 on March 23, 2011, 5:04 GMT

    ha ha ha...Won't it be insult to the dog..? ;) Dogs will take revenge by masking Chawla's face and rome around streets.

    Chawla was the most 'wrong' pick by selection committe. Above that picking him after successful failures in playing 11 by Dhoni was a blunder.

  • testli5504537 on March 22, 2011, 17:10 GMT

    This is some real funny stuff...Chawla in a dog costume...:D...and for all those Indians crying about respect and him being a player; how many of you hav had him in ur starting xi for the indian team???

  • testli5504537 on March 22, 2011, 16:52 GMT

    To J and Praveen Chadda. Gentlemen, I imagine it must be terribly awkward and dull trying to get through life without a sense of humour. What's it like?

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