IPL 2012 April 11, 2012

The superlative overdose

By Harshad Sardeshmukh, India
24

By Harshad Sardeshmukh, India

While watching the IPL can be a lot of fun at times, the quality of the cricket is not always the greatest. Considering the matches are mostly played on flat decks with lightning-fast outfields, it isn’t only going to be the “outstanding” batsmen who score runs. The mediocre one’s also score their fair share. But if one were to listen to the commentators without actually watching the match, he would be forgiven for thinking that every batsmen participating in the IPL is blessed with an abundance of talent.

Every shot that fetches a boundary is either “magnificent” or “excellent”. What about the sixes then? Well, since they fetch more runs than the fours, they have to be something better. “Extraordinary” maybe?

The commentators really need to go easy on the superlatives. Sure, we Indians are obsessed with batting and, in most cases, nothing excites the viewer more than a shot to the fence. But does that mean that every shot is brilliant? Not quite. A simple tap-in from inside the penalty area is a goal, so is a curler from outside the box. But would both of them draw the same comments from the pundits? No. The tap-in is the bread and butter goal, something you would expect the striker to put away. The curler on the other hand is something special. It deserves much credit.

Similarly putting away full tosses, while not a given, is expected of the batsmen. Nothing overly magnificent about it. A fluid Tendulkar straight drive, a commanding Ponting pull or a Laxman flick off a delivery from outside off, these could be termed majestic. These are the screamers from outside the area. These deserve all the praise they can get.

By qualifying each and every shot as an extraordinary achievement, some viewers may fail to appreciate the shots that are actually of high quality or difficult to execute. You would think the commentators, most of them former cricketers, would know the difference. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

Blame it on all the grandiose associated with the IPL. And the poor quality of television commentary in general these days. The fact that every six is termed a DLF maximum may have something to do with it. Maybe we aren’t far away from the day when even a forward defensive is “out of this world”.

Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Amarpreet on April 14, 2012, 12:37 GMT

    @Aditya - "Ambuja Cement solid Defence" Thats just a work of a genius!! LMAO loved it! Much better than the Karbon Kamaal and DLF MAXIMUM!

  • Kamrul Islam on April 13, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    I agree with the writer but what he thought to put some football example in cricket. Do he believe we understand football goal better then cricket shots?? Ridiculous! Try rocket science next time.

  • Shaan on April 13, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    Great article :) n every catch(easyone or hardone) , they always used to " KARBON KAMAL CATCH " and city magic moment of success, lack of grammer.

  • Royston on April 12, 2012, 21:32 GMT

    This pretty much explains why we are going to be a poor cricketing nation - perform poorly overseas and all is forgotten at the IPL. Our Indian Cricketer commentators too are paid to support the BCCI - give them money and they will say anything.

    In the end we shall have the richest cricket board, commentators and cricketors but the worst 'Cricket' team.

  • John zong on April 12, 2012, 20:31 GMT

    Ipl is nothing but a circus show and commentators have started to play clowns more actively. Thank heavens for test cricket. This t20 cricket is nauseating, honestly. Australia-Windies and England-Srilanka matches were absorbing and truly high class cricket.

  • Ramya R on April 12, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    superb article harshad. Everything about IPL is about hype and money so is the commentary. Higher the degree of adjective used, more the viewer attention n more the moolah.

  • VINEET ASHOK on April 12, 2012, 18:22 GMT

    Good Blog Harshad..............keep it up

  • aditya on April 12, 2012, 9:49 GMT

    the lats line- It will soon be called "Ambuja Cement solid Defence"

  • Jay on April 12, 2012, 9:27 GMT

    Quite right, the commentators can't wait to use the superlative and of-course prefixed by the sponsor names, guess they are obliged to do it perhaps tele-prompted.

  • Sriram on April 12, 2012, 9:20 GMT

    The best was yesterday when a KP edge of Botha went for 4 and was termed as magnificent timing, it was a pure edge and was beaten by Botha, KP's powerful arms took it to the boundary..Attrocious commentary

  • Amarpreet on April 14, 2012, 12:37 GMT

    @Aditya - "Ambuja Cement solid Defence" Thats just a work of a genius!! LMAO loved it! Much better than the Karbon Kamaal and DLF MAXIMUM!

  • Kamrul Islam on April 13, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    I agree with the writer but what he thought to put some football example in cricket. Do he believe we understand football goal better then cricket shots?? Ridiculous! Try rocket science next time.

  • Shaan on April 13, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    Great article :) n every catch(easyone or hardone) , they always used to " KARBON KAMAL CATCH " and city magic moment of success, lack of grammer.

  • Royston on April 12, 2012, 21:32 GMT

    This pretty much explains why we are going to be a poor cricketing nation - perform poorly overseas and all is forgotten at the IPL. Our Indian Cricketer commentators too are paid to support the BCCI - give them money and they will say anything.

    In the end we shall have the richest cricket board, commentators and cricketors but the worst 'Cricket' team.

  • John zong on April 12, 2012, 20:31 GMT

    Ipl is nothing but a circus show and commentators have started to play clowns more actively. Thank heavens for test cricket. This t20 cricket is nauseating, honestly. Australia-Windies and England-Srilanka matches were absorbing and truly high class cricket.

  • Ramya R on April 12, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    superb article harshad. Everything about IPL is about hype and money so is the commentary. Higher the degree of adjective used, more the viewer attention n more the moolah.

  • VINEET ASHOK on April 12, 2012, 18:22 GMT

    Good Blog Harshad..............keep it up

  • aditya on April 12, 2012, 9:49 GMT

    the lats line- It will soon be called "Ambuja Cement solid Defence"

  • Jay on April 12, 2012, 9:27 GMT

    Quite right, the commentators can't wait to use the superlative and of-course prefixed by the sponsor names, guess they are obliged to do it perhaps tele-prompted.

  • Sriram on April 12, 2012, 9:20 GMT

    The best was yesterday when a KP edge of Botha went for 4 and was termed as magnificent timing, it was a pure edge and was beaten by Botha, KP's powerful arms took it to the boundary..Attrocious commentary

  • OXHorn on April 12, 2012, 9:19 GMT

    @Harshad, I think you have gone overboard by comparing football commentary to cricket. I cannot simply say that you are comparing apples and oranges, but, cant resist to say so. Yous thoughts about commantary are accepted to some extent, but, demeening the qualified cricket commentators' is not correct. May be, the superlatives that you were trying to use to describe the present cricket commentary/commentators, should be reserved for the worst cricket commentary, not for this situation though!! Bear in mind, even football commentators are not saints!!

  • Sachin on April 12, 2012, 9:04 GMT

    commentators are the IPL loyalists who are paid to speak good anything about IPL, It takes some effort from them to say this is an ordinary shot or this is an extra ordinary shot..:)

  • Dhananjayan a on April 12, 2012, 8:27 GMT

    Extraordinary Article!!! And you forgot to mention about the KARBON KAMAAL KATCH.

  • Murali on April 12, 2012, 7:39 GMT

    The IPL is a product of hype. Artificially manufactured hype. That's why, everything needs to be made exciting. So mediocre shots transform in to great ones. Mediocre players are transformed overnight in to exciting talents. Probably this explains the dip in TV ratings. After all, there is just that much hype we can stomach, after that it leads to an upset stomach.

  • Pujari Rajkumar on April 12, 2012, 7:19 GMT

    The article is an absolute beauty from Harshad. Poor commentators these days. Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri must have their lips stitched up together. Don't mention Rameez Raza, Athar Ali Khan and that Asia cup group. Ian Chappel and Harsha Bhogle are the best. Where the hell are they hiding? Bhogle is better off commentating in english rather than doing pre-shows and post-shows in hindi. Terrible management at Set Max. Big teams CSK & RCB fans don;t even understand hindi. Disgusting idiots at Set Max management.

  • Girish on April 12, 2012, 7:11 GMT

    I think, the over all quality of bowling and fielding is much better than most of international matches for IPL, so some of praises should be heaped on to bowlers and fielders than for batsmen.

  • Thushar on April 12, 2012, 6:39 GMT

    "A fluid Tendulkar straight drive, a commanding Ponting pull or a Laxman flick off a delivery from outside off" - you are going to see none of these in IPL. Its all about DLF Maximums and Karbon Kamaals !

  • Pradyuman on April 12, 2012, 6:37 GMT

    If the game is crass, the commentary is crasser. A shame to the game.

  • R.Narayan on April 12, 2012, 5:33 GMT

    Brilliant.. though IPL commentary is as much of a leg stump full toss as you can get! But I see possibilities...Since monetary penalties have no effect on on field behaviour, perhaps future ICC penalties should include being locked in a room for an hour with Navjot Siddhu and Danny Morrison commenting together. Danny: "THATS OUUUTTTA HERE!BRILLIANT! WHADDAYU SAY NAVJOT? Siddhu: "If wishes were horses, even a chicken would be master of his tinker, my friend!"

  • Suraj on April 12, 2012, 4:43 GMT

    I agree with what you said, but looking at the hopeless technique of today's batters, I would say that a forward defensive has to be classed as 'out of this world', since so few seem capable of playing it!

  • Divya on April 11, 2012, 17:23 GMT

    I have one simple question to ask: Do you, the average Indian cricket fan, hate bowlers? If no, then why do you demand that EVERY T20 game should be a high-scoring one? And, if you do indeed hate bowlers, why don't you ask your beloved Sachin Tendulkar to bat at No. 11?

  • Raman Iyer on April 11, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    That's a 'DLF Maximum' here for sure! There are just two kind of shots played, if you listen to the commentary - "a magnificent shot..that's gone miles" and a "a magnificent shot...that's gone far...but not far enough...simple enough catch for

  • Ketan D on April 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    Good post Harshad! In the midst of making T20 and cricket commentary more viewer friendly, we have lost the meaning of the really good cricketing shot.

  • uuiewbjn dfhhuhufd on April 11, 2012, 14:00 GMT

    By qualifying each and every shot as an extraordinary achievement, some viewers may fail to appreciate the shots that are actually of high quality or difficult to execute. You would think the commentators, most of them former cricketers, would know the difference. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

    Blame it on all the grandiose associated with the IPL. And the poor quality of television commentary in general these days. The fact that every six is termed a DLF maximum may have something to do with it. Maybe we aren’t far away from the day when even a forward defensive is “out of this world”.

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  • uuiewbjn dfhhuhufd on April 11, 2012, 14:00 GMT

    By qualifying each and every shot as an extraordinary achievement, some viewers may fail to appreciate the shots that are actually of high quality or difficult to execute. You would think the commentators, most of them former cricketers, would know the difference. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

    Blame it on all the grandiose associated with the IPL. And the poor quality of television commentary in general these days. The fact that every six is termed a DLF maximum may have something to do with it. Maybe we aren’t far away from the day when even a forward defensive is “out of this world”.

  • Ketan D on April 11, 2012, 14:11 GMT

    Good post Harshad! In the midst of making T20 and cricket commentary more viewer friendly, we have lost the meaning of the really good cricketing shot.

  • Raman Iyer on April 11, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    That's a 'DLF Maximum' here for sure! There are just two kind of shots played, if you listen to the commentary - "a magnificent shot..that's gone miles" and a "a magnificent shot...that's gone far...but not far enough...simple enough catch for

  • Divya on April 11, 2012, 17:23 GMT

    I have one simple question to ask: Do you, the average Indian cricket fan, hate bowlers? If no, then why do you demand that EVERY T20 game should be a high-scoring one? And, if you do indeed hate bowlers, why don't you ask your beloved Sachin Tendulkar to bat at No. 11?

  • Suraj on April 12, 2012, 4:43 GMT

    I agree with what you said, but looking at the hopeless technique of today's batters, I would say that a forward defensive has to be classed as 'out of this world', since so few seem capable of playing it!

  • R.Narayan on April 12, 2012, 5:33 GMT

    Brilliant.. though IPL commentary is as much of a leg stump full toss as you can get! But I see possibilities...Since monetary penalties have no effect on on field behaviour, perhaps future ICC penalties should include being locked in a room for an hour with Navjot Siddhu and Danny Morrison commenting together. Danny: "THATS OUUUTTTA HERE!BRILLIANT! WHADDAYU SAY NAVJOT? Siddhu: "If wishes were horses, even a chicken would be master of his tinker, my friend!"

  • Pradyuman on April 12, 2012, 6:37 GMT

    If the game is crass, the commentary is crasser. A shame to the game.

  • Thushar on April 12, 2012, 6:39 GMT

    "A fluid Tendulkar straight drive, a commanding Ponting pull or a Laxman flick off a delivery from outside off" - you are going to see none of these in IPL. Its all about DLF Maximums and Karbon Kamaals !

  • Girish on April 12, 2012, 7:11 GMT

    I think, the over all quality of bowling and fielding is much better than most of international matches for IPL, so some of praises should be heaped on to bowlers and fielders than for batsmen.

  • Pujari Rajkumar on April 12, 2012, 7:19 GMT

    The article is an absolute beauty from Harshad. Poor commentators these days. Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri must have their lips stitched up together. Don't mention Rameez Raza, Athar Ali Khan and that Asia cup group. Ian Chappel and Harsha Bhogle are the best. Where the hell are they hiding? Bhogle is better off commentating in english rather than doing pre-shows and post-shows in hindi. Terrible management at Set Max. Big teams CSK & RCB fans don;t even understand hindi. Disgusting idiots at Set Max management.