Please note: This is a humorous piece – pure fiction.
With key batsmen and bowlers of the national cricket team woefully out of form and nursing bruised egos in the wake of the first home defeat since 2004 and the first against England since 1984-85, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has arranged for a series between Team India and itself to help the players regain their mojo before the old enemy Pakistan arrives.
As per the new schedule, Team India batsmen led by Virender Sehwag will play two Tests, three One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and a T-20 against Team India bowlers, led by Ishant Sharma, in what promises to be a keen contest between two evenly-matched sides. The likes of Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir feel that a series against Indian bowlers from the national team will help them rediscover the joys of crease occupation and fluid stroke making without coming under too much pressure.
“I’m looking forward to helicoptering a few balls out of the ground and letting off some steam,” growled an equally bullish Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
On the other hand, the Indian bowlers are looking forward to running through the top order and improving their strike rates.
“I should bag a handful of wickets against this batting line-up, man. Never felt so kicked about a series as this one. Indian batsmen beware!” said a charged-up Ishant, who has promised to make the batsmen hop. All-rounders like Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin will figure in both teams and enjoy the best of both worlds.
“I promise fans that I’ll add to my heap of triple centuries and make up for my non-show with the bat in the fourth Test,” opined Jadeja.
BCCI President N Srinivasan has called it a win-win deal. “We desperately need Team India to get back to winning ways, paa. We could have quickly arranged a series with Sri Lanka or Bangladesh, but the boys said they don’t want to play a foreign team. In fact, many associate nations like Bermuda, Afghanistan, Ireland, Netherlands, even America, are keen to tour, but we have kept their requests on hold.”
“Then it struck me, why not let the boys play against themselves to help them rediscover their forms and confidence. And irrespective of the outcome, Indian fans can be assured of an Indian victory,” a beaming Srinivasan told The Unreal Times.
To paraphrase the legendary Ravi Shastri: “In the end, Indian cricket will be the winner.”
(“Unreal Mama” is the pen name under which CS Krishna and Karthik Laxman, the founding editors of The Unreal Times (www.theunrealtimes.com ), write fictional news reports, dressing room conversations and other such articles marrying humour with satire. The Unreal Times is India’s favourite satire, spoof, parody and humour portal and the article above is reproduced with permission)