India tour of England 2014: ICC to ban last-wicket partnerships
N Srinivasan (centre) is not happy with the latest record-breaking feats from the Indian and England tailenders © Getty Images & PTI
By Ashwin Kumar
Please note this is a humour article — work of pure fiction
After two consecutive massive, match-altering last-wicket partnerships between India’s Bhuvaneshwar Kumar-Mohammad Shami and England’s Joe Root-James Anderson tested the patience of the limited audience that watches Test cricket, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has decided to do away with last-wicket partnerships for the remainder of the ongoing India-England series, on an experimental basis. The number of runs for the last wicket partnership will be decided by the Duckworth-Lewis method.
“Aamaa paa, these last wicket partnerships will kill Test cricket. It is ok if the Indian tail wags once in a while. That Test cricket lovers don’t mind since most of them are Indians and it allows them to mouth platitudes like ‘that’s what makes Test cricket so exciting’. But when the England last wicket pair repeats the act, viewers lose interest paa,” ICC Chairman N Srinivasan told The UnReal Times.
Since making more bowler friendly pitches along with DRS is a no-go area, Srinivasan’s proposal found resonance with bowlers in both the teams. “Come on, yaar. You bat for half a day and then realize you’ll have to bowl long spells immediately after that. We’re workhorses, not machines. Srini mama’s idea is very good and I hope it is implemented soon. It’s one thing if you have to bat for hours like Rahul Dravid and then have to bowl like Venkatesh Prasad. I can do that aaraam se, but to bat like Dravid and then bowl like me is just too tough on me,” India’s Mohammad Shami told The UnReal Times.
Anderson seconded Shami’s stand. “I was beginning to feel like Ishant Sharma towards the end of my spell after Bhuvi belted me to cow’s corner repeatedly. I tried to make up for it by tonking a few myself but the psychological damage is done,” the English pacer wailed.
Sources, however, added that the phenomenon could repeat with the likelihood of record eighth-wicket partnerships too. “If it happens regularly, we will invert the line-ups of both teams, so that bowlers get to open the innings and batsmen get to bat last,” Srinivasan said.
(Ashwin Kumar is a humorist with www.theunrealtimes.com where this article was originally published. The UnReal Times is India’s favourite satire, spoof, parody and humour portal)