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The Heavy Ball

A shadow reveals all, and the IPL gets animated

At last, the dastardly blogger is brought to light. Sort of

Shah Rukh Khan speaks at a press conference, Cape Town, April 14, 2009
Shah Rukh pulls off the difficult feat of shedding light on a vexed issue and on his immaculate coiffure at the same time © AFP

With the Fake IPL player "revealing" his identity by publishing the now-famous shadowy video, the Kolkata Knight Riders team has immediately swung into action to eliminate him. "Ah. Now we know - it has been a shadow all along. Anyway, this ends now. We are currently installing diffused lighting in all corners of our dressing room so that no shadows will be cast. Ha ha ha, he has nowhere to hide!" said a smug-looking John Buchanan. "As Sun Tzu pointed out, a man must not even trust his own shadow," he added, looking daggers at his own delectably long umbra-penumbra combo on the wall behind him. The lights are being installed by a 22-member team of electricians being specially flown down from Queensland for the purpose.

Team owner Shah Rukh Khan has also come out strongly against the shadowy blogger. "I knew it couldn't have been a human being, like me, who did this. Good human beings, like me, would, as I would, have a great regard for other people, who are human beings just like me, instead of focusing solely on their own selfish needs, like I do. Er, scratch the last bit," said SRK, straining every facial muscle in order to frown, smile and look mildly concerned all at once. "Shadows, on the other hand, being merely negative projections that are created due to a light source being blocked by an opaque object, have no such qualms," he signed off with a kindergarten-science flourish.

"I suppose this is the first time that a shadow has thrown light on something. Heh heh," said smiling KKR skipper Brendon McCullum. "On reflection, I think our darkest days are behind us. I hope next year's results don't mirror this year's, so that we can shine in all departments of the game," he quipped, displaying an unexpected proficiency in making light-themed puns.

On-field action has also been exciting, with three teams, including the defending champions, now out of the reckoning. As always, the losing teams have been speaking about the positives that they will take back with them.

"We'll look at the positives. Our captaincy was positively puzzling, and our batting was positively ridiculous," said Mumbai Indians chief mentor Shaun Pollock.

"Mate, the only positive thing to emerge for me at this year's IPL might be my blood test," winked Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne, showing that the one thing he hasn't lost yet is his sense of humour.

Meanwhile, the IPL has organised special coaching classes for young cricketers, where they can learn subtle nuances of the game from Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri. The former cricketing greats will explain and demystify core concepts such as "singles add to the total", "the team batting second knows their target", and "it's important to hit the ball into the gaps", for the benefit of the eager youngsters.

In other news that is sure to delight younger fans, the animation industry now follows Bollywood in showing an interest in the IPL. Apparently, animation studios are keen to cast Ramiz Raja as one of the vultures in a Jungle Book remake, hire the Vodafone Zoozoos as body doubles for Casper the Friendly Ghost, and launch Gaurav Kapoor as India's first live-action claymation superstar.

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