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Indian seniors try to sort out their feelings

The following are the minutes of a meeting held to address allegations of a rift in the Indian team

R Rajkumar

Comments: 20 | Text size: A | A
(From left) Gautam Gambhir, Sreesanth, Virender Sehwag, MS Dhoni, Ashish Nehra and Sachin Tendulkar rest during a training session, Bangalore, March 3, 2011.
The core leadership group kept their poker faces on after having agreed unanimously on the need for an emergency lobotomy for Sreesanth © Getty Images
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A meeting was apparently held yesterday to address allegations of a rift in the Indian team, recent success against Sri Lanka notwithstanding. The following are the minutes of that meeting, presented to ESPNcricinfo by regular Page 2 contributor at large Julian Assange.

TEAM INDIA Meeting [Date: 25/02/12]

Meeting was called to order at 7:00pm at the Sydney Airport Budget Holiday Inn, in Conference Room C, adjacent to the Poore-Sapp wedding reception in Conference Room B. Quorum was established, whatever that is.

Attendees Present:
MS Dhoni - Captain
Virender Sehwag - Former Captain
Gautam Gambhir - Former Captain
Sachin Tendulkar - Former Captain, National Treasure
Ego - Enough in the room to kill a large mare

Also Present:
Duncan Fletcher - Future Former Coach of India
Frank TJ Muckenfuss - World-renowned corporate team-bonding and success coach
GS Walia - Media manager
Greg Chappell - Former Captain (Aus), former coach of - wait, what's he doing here?
Edward de Bono (aka Edward d'Oh, Hell-no by Indian players) - former captain Bestselling author and professional consultant, author of Six Thinking Hats.

Absent Without Leave:
Integrity, Solidarity, Pride, "Playing for the nation," love sweet love, etc.

Pre-meeting team-bonding activity:
A game of Chinese Whispers, conducted by Mr Muckenfuss to illustrate the inherent unreliability of human communication. The sentence "I slit the sheet, the sheet I slit, and on the slitted sheet I sit" was whispered into Mr Dhoni's ear and passed on from there, to see how it would mutate. The game was aborted when Mr Sehwag screamed that Mr Chappell had whispered a bad word in his ear. The meeting was then duly convened by Mr Walia, and the team was ready to proceed with business at 7.11pm.

Captain's report presented by: MS Dhoni
F*@# not given by: Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag


Motion: To agree that Tuesday's fantastic result against Sri Lanka means that the team has moved on from last week's rumours.
Vote: Motion disapproved. One in favour (Dhoni), two opposed (Gambhir, Tendulkar), and one wanted to know what happened last week (Sehwag).

Motion: To have all the senior players share a table at breakfast together the next morning and share a table, to put on a happy face for the sake of appearances.
Vote: Motion disapproved. One in favour (Dhoni), two opposed (Tendulkar and Gambhir) and one asleep (Sehwag).

Motion: Have the BCCI bring in a communications expert.
Vote: Motion disapproved. Three couldn't understand the question (Tendulkar, Dhoni, Gambhir), and one woke up and asked for tea (Sehwag).

Motion: To quickly find a major toothpaste company to endorse the team, so the seniors can appear smiling together in an ad for said toothpaste.
Vote: Motion disapproved. One in favour of a whitening toothpaste (Dhoni), two for a herbal variety (Gambhir and Tendulkar), and one abstained for unknown reasons (Sehwag).

Motion: To accept that MS Dhoni's insistence on the rotation policy was motivated by sincere desire to promote youth with an eye to the World Cup.
Vote: Motion disapproved. One in favour (MS Dhoni), three dissolved in laughter.

Motion: To agree that MS Dhoni's figure of the team being cost 20 runs whenever all the seniors played together was actually a generous one.
Vote: Motion approved unanimously.

Motion: To accept that Gautam Gambhir's opinion that MS Dhoni was playing for himself and leaving chases until too late was not true and/or "taken out of context."
Vote: Motion disapproved. One in favour (MS Dhoni), two against (Sehwag and Tendulkar), and one smug (Gambhir).

***Interruption: Meeting interrupted for two seconds, the time it took former captain Sourav Ganguly to barge into the room and, upon registering Greg Chappell's presence in it, do an about-turn.***

Motion: To accept, as a last resort, Greg Chappell's offer of reintroducing himself to Indian cricket at this troubled time, and try once again, for old time's sake, to adopt Edward de Bono's "thinking hats" problem-solving technique.

(Mr de Bono walks around the room and places coloured hats, some of them suspiciously conical, on the heads of the players.)

Vote: Was not a vote at all but a violent scuffle, during which Mr Chappell was grievously injured, and had to be taken to hospital. Mr de Bono was defenestrated. The condition of the author is not known at this time.

Motion: To get rid of any lingering resentment, put aside differences, and focus on winning the finals of the CB Series, should India play them.
Vote: Motion unanimously maybe-d - all four agree, on condition that they be first allowed to crash the Poore-Sapp wedding buffet in Conference Room B first.

Meeting Adjourned

R Rajkumar tweets here

All quotes and "facts" in this article are made up, but you knew that already, didn't you?

Tell us what you think. Send us your feedback

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Comments: 20 
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Posted by Dummy4 on (March 2, 2012, 6:01 GMT)

Boss- servant culture is the forte of indian culture. U just cant blame your boss - else u have to face circumstances. The losers are Gautam and Viru.

Posted by Sarath on (March 2, 2012, 5:37 GMT)

@Rajeshj , I can only laugh at your comments. Are u serious abt ur comments on Gambhir. He may not be a stylish player. But he is a workaholic on the pitch churning runs at good rate :) And Sachin - he doesn't have to reply on your (or anyone's) doubts on his retirement. Wish him the strength to topple the pressure!!

Posted by Sarath on (March 2, 2012, 5:31 GMT)

If author thinks Dhoni is the only true gentlemen - Shame :) Dhoni is a tactician and he showed it off-field too this time! I don't understand why Sachin is being added to the Fun? Its no-fun now!!

Posted by JIGNESH on (March 2, 2012, 1:41 GMT)

Hilarious, Just hilarious! Sehwag always finds asleep! When he was on 99* against SL 2 years ago, and India needed only one run to win and he needed 1 run to finish his century, Sehwag sent the ball out of the ground, and raised his bat to celebrate his century. But that mega no-ball was purposely bowled by Randiv, so India won but Sehwag's century won't considered. After umpire explained Sehwag, and then he got understood. Sehwag didn't know that rule. Indian fans in India and all over the world, can't sleep because of poor performance of India in this series, and everybody wondering what these cricketers doing after losing each game? Sehwag didn't know that Dhoni gave bad statements against Sehwag, Gambhir, and Sachin.

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 1, 2012, 23:14 GMT)

You're a funny bugger R Rajkumar. That Greg Chappell deserves to be knocked around a little - too arrogant for my liking. Being a rather cynical fella, I've always found de Bono's American style of personal preaching rather off-putting. Although the Indian players could use a session of team bonding exercises. Perhaps a murder mystery would be appropriate. Tendulkar could play a demigod - beyond suspicion; Sehwag an ageing and increasingly rotund hitman - whose reflexes are waning; Dhoni a self assured police chief - seemingly in control; and Gambhir a member of the paparazzi - continuously leaking stories. The narrative is still unfolding, so stay tuned....

Posted by Ashok on (March 1, 2012, 21:22 GMT)

I think someone missed out one important Agenda item: Justification for by- passing Irfan Pathan for the last game against SL, in favour of Jadeja, even after Irfan took wkts. & scored 47 runs including 2 sixers in the preceding match vs. Aussies in a losing cause. If a spinner was needed Rahul is the best one.

Posted by Jairam on (March 1, 2012, 20:01 GMT)

I remain speechless, this is priceless, HILARIOUS! Publish that book! I will stand hours to buy!

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 1, 2012, 19:50 GMT)

one wanted to know what happened last week (Sehwag). - brilliant.

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 1, 2012, 19:29 GMT)

Was it left out on purpose that Virat Kohli was banging on the door all thru the meeting and when dada barged in, they both saw Greg Chappel & hurried out together!

Posted by Krishna on (March 1, 2012, 17:37 GMT)

hmm Raj, you have set high expectations for yourself, this one is ok but not as hilarious as your Andy Flower wikipedia write up. expecting more from you mate..

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