Dirk Nannes May 9, 2012

Different cultures, familiar characters

Over the first few years of the IPL, it had an image of ‘wild’ cheerleaders, players at late night parties drinking vodka through yard-glasses, models parading nude through hotels at 5 am in the morning, cash being burnt as fuel in fire-places, and
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Over the first few years of the IPL, it had an image of ‘wild’ cheerleaders, players at late night parties drinking vodka through yard-glasses, models parading nude through hotels at 5 am in the morning, cash being burnt as fuel in fire-places, and the ‘hit-and-giggle’ cricket being an afterthought to every sin imaginable.

At least that’s what IPL detractors would have you think. However the truth is very different.

Contrary to any negative sentiments outsiders may hold, the players treat the IPL as a serious tournament, played with terrific intent and passion by many of the best cricketers in the world. It’s a high value, high pressure and cutthroat event where good form is rewarded, and poor form is condemned.

But the IPL has done much more than simply create a new event on the cricketing calendar or even ‘bolster player bank accounts’. It has become a melting pot of cricketing ideas and backgrounds. It’s a place where cricket tactics are shared among players from all corners of the cricketing world.

I believe one of the IPL’s biggest contributions to the game has been the breaking down of the social and personal barriers between rival teams from around the world. No other tournament in world cricket has ever brought together so many differing cricketing backgrounds and personalities into one team dressing room.

Who could possibly think of putting Paul Collingwood and Daniel Vettori in the same Delhi Daredevils dressing room months after the run out incident at The Oval in 2008, or putting Andrew Symonds and Harbhajan Singh together in Mumbai after ‘monkey-gate’. It’s not just these guys but many others who have been vicious adversaries on field, to become teammates in the IPL. And not only have these players shared dressing rooms, but often they’ve become friends.

The IPL has taught me that no matter what political, religious or social differences there are between countries or teams, each dressing room is filled with the same characters. Every team in the world has the practical joker, the serious guy, the musician, or the dancer. They all have the guy that can’t swim, the one that hates the gym, the ladies man, and the family man. They also have the guy who wants to win at all costs, the guy who sledges, and the calm guy who’s cool in a crisis. But most importantly of all, they all have great people.

It doesn’t seem to matter how hard they play on a pitch, how aggressively they sledge, how quiet they are, or how good or bad their ability, each team has people who are caring, people who are great to go out with, people who are terrific to chat to, and people who make you laugh.

Every IPL team brings together good people. We’re different in our own way, but we share a common passion for the game. We each share the love of good, hard and tough cricket, but also love the camaraderie, teamwork and fun that team sport brings. We love sharing our time with good people.

Cricket seems to do that. It’s another reason why I’m so very fortunate to be a cricketer.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ash on May 20, 2012, 3:41 GMT

    Dirk, I really enjoy your writing style and the experience you share as an ‘insider’. great read, best of luck!

  • Mark on May 17, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    You forgot to name corruption which IPL is slow and steadily exporting to international cricket. Players are getting immune to all this.

  • Srivatsa on May 17, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    Great work Dirk, and a belated happy birthday! :-) Keep the good work going! I really look forward to reading your blogs! :-) Cheers mate!

  • Charles on May 16, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    I wish there was a facebook like button with this blog ... i loved it and i would like to share it with my friends who are born passionate about CRICKET like me !!!!

  • Subramanya on May 15, 2012, 13:00 GMT

    Liked what you have shared... Good job Dirk..

  • CRICSWITCH on May 12, 2012, 13:56 GMT

    I thnk U nt know that pak players are away frm ipl only due to politics

  • truth on May 12, 2012, 9:03 GMT

    The ipl is not what this article says because only those players play which bbci wants.so its not worth saying that ipl is world wide league.pakistani players are the best in that format there record suggest that

  • lugu jaga on May 12, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    this ipl is too long and it gets boring sometimes;but most of what you are saying makes sense.good article dirk

  • bharat on May 11, 2012, 20:37 GMT

    @ michael grow up dude ..forget about the times when u ppl used to dominate the less privileged nations ... time changes and hence ppl need to change as well... and sumtime watch the full-house of IPL games and compare it with EPL u will c the common enthusiasm..

  • CRICSWITCH on May 11, 2012, 14:52 GMT

    What u r talking abt that no matter what political, religious etc. background u have. Pakistani players are out only due to politics. Shame on u & dont show urself rather foolish.

  • Ash on May 20, 2012, 3:41 GMT

    Dirk, I really enjoy your writing style and the experience you share as an ‘insider’. great read, best of luck!

  • Mark on May 17, 2012, 14:40 GMT

    You forgot to name corruption which IPL is slow and steadily exporting to international cricket. Players are getting immune to all this.

  • Srivatsa on May 17, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    Great work Dirk, and a belated happy birthday! :-) Keep the good work going! I really look forward to reading your blogs! :-) Cheers mate!

  • Charles on May 16, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    I wish there was a facebook like button with this blog ... i loved it and i would like to share it with my friends who are born passionate about CRICKET like me !!!!

  • Subramanya on May 15, 2012, 13:00 GMT

    Liked what you have shared... Good job Dirk..

  • CRICSWITCH on May 12, 2012, 13:56 GMT

    I thnk U nt know that pak players are away frm ipl only due to politics

  • truth on May 12, 2012, 9:03 GMT

    The ipl is not what this article says because only those players play which bbci wants.so its not worth saying that ipl is world wide league.pakistani players are the best in that format there record suggest that

  • lugu jaga on May 12, 2012, 4:12 GMT

    this ipl is too long and it gets boring sometimes;but most of what you are saying makes sense.good article dirk

  • bharat on May 11, 2012, 20:37 GMT

    @ michael grow up dude ..forget about the times when u ppl used to dominate the less privileged nations ... time changes and hence ppl need to change as well... and sumtime watch the full-house of IPL games and compare it with EPL u will c the common enthusiasm..

  • CRICSWITCH on May 11, 2012, 14:52 GMT

    What u r talking abt that no matter what political, religious etc. background u have. Pakistani players are out only due to politics. Shame on u & dont show urself rather foolish.

  • Sanket on May 11, 2012, 12:15 GMT

    @Micheal- Man if you don't like IPL or any events organised by subcontinent then just ingore us buddy.Don't waste you time and energy to read even the articles. Lets your players earn some money and leave it to them. We are just fans.

  • Gokul on May 11, 2012, 11:20 GMT

    I wonder why people who dont like the IPL want to read this article in the first place. Get a life guys... Wonderful article Dirk. Cheers to RCB!

  • Anuj on May 11, 2012, 8:28 GMT

    @Micheal - There are cricket fans... and then there are cricket fans! Behind all that, there are IPL haters!

  • Sai on May 10, 2012, 20:47 GMT

    A very insightful article. I have not thought about some of the points you have mentioned actually! Go RCB ! @Michael If you do not like the IPL could you please abstain from reading every IPL thread and posting against it? Thanks!

  • Jeff Miller on May 10, 2012, 14:18 GMT

    I don't agree that 20 overs format is not real cricket. It is the newest format but not "unreal". Just because it is hurting country cricket doesn't mean we start demonizing it. Other countries should come up with their own version of IPL and make it more popular than IPL rather than cursing and finding faults. I think IPL has given a chance to players to be financially secure, play some good cricket, share dressing room with cricketers of other countries ans most of all have fun and entertain. Just chill and enjoy...

  • Neeraj on May 10, 2012, 10:37 GMT

    A perfect article defining IPL,cricket players and their passion. And with this nice article we come across another aspect of a fast bowler that he is a insightful writer too.... Great work Dirk

  • Ajay G on May 10, 2012, 9:28 GMT

    An amazing article written by a true ambassador of the game. Take a bow Dirk!

  • chaitanya on May 10, 2012, 8:51 GMT

    The real cricket is being played this seasons, its really nice all the players are represented as teams today than individuals and most importantly the talk has been shifted from the team owners to the teams performance which is a great sign. If the BCCI gets a clarity in retaining more players rather than changing all of them every 3 years,i feel it would help a lot in connecting all the players and fans to the teams by which more people n more countries get attracted to the teams and obliviously cricket and IPL

  • Pradeep on May 10, 2012, 8:36 GMT

    Derek, you have said it all. IPL is a format of Cricket which brings everything, everyone, every other bit together. I believe this is the best thing to happen to Cricketing history. There was a time in football where everyone used to eagerly await for World Cup one in four years. When they realised that fans require to be entertained more often and does not neccessarily wait for such long time for an event, many clusters of football event was organised. IPL is doing same to Cricket what BPL or EPL has done to Football.

  • Adeel on May 10, 2012, 6:56 GMT

    wow, through these entries you've got a new fan! Actually, i believe many.

  • Tanu on May 10, 2012, 1:13 GMT

    I agree with Nannes. But I wish there were more teams and more foreign players on Indian soil experiencing and visiting our beautiful nation. It is too bad that sometimes, even in India, the terror threat is high. But that is the world we live in these days after the SL team was attacked by terrorists in Lahore, Pakistan.

  • C Ranaweera on May 10, 2012, 1:05 GMT

    Nice perspective. Something I was hoping somebody would write sooner rather than later. Good advertisement for supporters of multiculturalism. This is exactly the reason why multiculturalism works too!

  • Michael on May 9, 2012, 20:38 GMT

    This doesn't stop the fact that only Indian fans care. I don't want to see the best players in the world in one place, I want to see my own boys taking on all the nations of the world. This system works in the USA with baseball, hockey, basketball, american football etc because they are the best and highest levels of their sports. The IPL is a joke because it defines the mercenary nature of the game, players playing purely for whoever pays them the most in what is not the highest form of the game. Even worse, it is unbelievable when players miss playing time for their country because of it. The IPL is ruining cricket.

  • cafe on May 9, 2012, 19:45 GMT

    This is amazing...I eagerly wait to see new blogs from you Dirk. I am also eager to see you in the field (thats the place where you belong)...well written, keep it up mate...Cheers

  • Nilay Jain on May 9, 2012, 18:59 GMT

    Nice read. One thing IPL has done, on top of all the things Dirk has mentioned, is that it has given the domestic players a chance to play with the same pro's that they once looked up to. Sharing a playing field or a locker room usually leads to sharing ideas and this can only help the future of Indian cricket as the new batch will be groomed much better by the likes of Sachin, Kallis and Steyn's.

  • Gagan on May 9, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    Simply written yet so apt..an excellent piece of writing Nan.....loved it...keep up the good work.

  • subramanyam chittivelu on May 9, 2012, 17:45 GMT

    Summerized nicely.

  • Hari Adivarekar on May 9, 2012, 16:49 GMT

    I now wait for your entries. Looks like writing is another feather in an already crowded cap for the renaissance man of world cricket. And he can bowl 145+ when called upon. Really insightful stuff, Dirk. Keep it flowing.

  • nabog on May 9, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    Nice article, couldn't say better...

  • Vilander on May 9, 2012, 15:43 GMT

    The dust is settling down now and the cricket is more visible, the casual fan is going back home the hardcore ones are left behind. The quality of cricket and cricketers was always apparent the glitz has finally taken its rightful back seat. No need for any insecurities dude, IPL always had fans who were in it for the cricket.

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  • Vilander on May 9, 2012, 15:43 GMT

    The dust is settling down now and the cricket is more visible, the casual fan is going back home the hardcore ones are left behind. The quality of cricket and cricketers was always apparent the glitz has finally taken its rightful back seat. No need for any insecurities dude, IPL always had fans who were in it for the cricket.

  • nabog on May 9, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    Nice article, couldn't say better...

  • Hari Adivarekar on May 9, 2012, 16:49 GMT

    I now wait for your entries. Looks like writing is another feather in an already crowded cap for the renaissance man of world cricket. And he can bowl 145+ when called upon. Really insightful stuff, Dirk. Keep it flowing.

  • subramanyam chittivelu on May 9, 2012, 17:45 GMT

    Summerized nicely.

  • Gagan on May 9, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    Simply written yet so apt..an excellent piece of writing Nan.....loved it...keep up the good work.

  • Nilay Jain on May 9, 2012, 18:59 GMT

    Nice read. One thing IPL has done, on top of all the things Dirk has mentioned, is that it has given the domestic players a chance to play with the same pro's that they once looked up to. Sharing a playing field or a locker room usually leads to sharing ideas and this can only help the future of Indian cricket as the new batch will be groomed much better by the likes of Sachin, Kallis and Steyn's.

  • cafe on May 9, 2012, 19:45 GMT

    This is amazing...I eagerly wait to see new blogs from you Dirk. I am also eager to see you in the field (thats the place where you belong)...well written, keep it up mate...Cheers

  • Michael on May 9, 2012, 20:38 GMT

    This doesn't stop the fact that only Indian fans care. I don't want to see the best players in the world in one place, I want to see my own boys taking on all the nations of the world. This system works in the USA with baseball, hockey, basketball, american football etc because they are the best and highest levels of their sports. The IPL is a joke because it defines the mercenary nature of the game, players playing purely for whoever pays them the most in what is not the highest form of the game. Even worse, it is unbelievable when players miss playing time for their country because of it. The IPL is ruining cricket.

  • C Ranaweera on May 10, 2012, 1:05 GMT

    Nice perspective. Something I was hoping somebody would write sooner rather than later. Good advertisement for supporters of multiculturalism. This is exactly the reason why multiculturalism works too!

  • Tanu on May 10, 2012, 1:13 GMT

    I agree with Nannes. But I wish there were more teams and more foreign players on Indian soil experiencing and visiting our beautiful nation. It is too bad that sometimes, even in India, the terror threat is high. But that is the world we live in these days after the SL team was attacked by terrorists in Lahore, Pakistan.