By Ashwin Kumar
Please note this is a humour article – work of pure fiction
It was billed as a clash between contrasting styles — Venkatesh Prasad urging his protégé to slow it down versus Anil Kumble goading Harbhajan Singh to speed it up; Daniel Christian’s charity versus Chris Gayle’s savagery.
It was all that and much more with India discovering a new slow bowling talent, Jasprit Bumrah, even as Vinay Kumar staked his claim to being hailed as the Devangere Express from his earlier moniker ‘The Devangere Slow Mail’.
In the initial overs of the first innings, Royal Challengers Bangalore’s batting failed to take off just like Kingfisher Airlines (KFA) flights, tweeted Diogeneb. Gayle seemed unusually subdued and disoriented even as wickets fell in heaps around him. Gayle would later clarify why it took him some time to tear into the Mumbai Indians attack:
The inevitable Gayle assault soon came, and the Mumbai Indians bowlers were rendered helpless against his furious onslaught. Harbhajan made a valiant effort, but the closest he came to bothering Gayle was when he collided into the Jamaican attempting to field off his own bowling, injuring the Jamaican’s knee. Unfortunately for Harbhajan and his teammates, this only prompted Gayle to shun running altogether and deal in boundaries.
Thanks to Gayle’s assault in the latter half, RCB went into the second innings with confidence despite having the likes of Vinay Kumar and Jaydev Unadkat in their ranks, with the terrifying (for MI) shadow of coach Venkatesh Prasad behind them.
Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting started off steadily with both seemingly trying to outdo each other in slowing down the run-rate. Just as Tendulkar began to open up, Ponting, determined to do it for Tendulkar rather than the other way around, ran out God.
It was Dinesh Karthik, and not Rohit Sharma, who walked in, but we’ve never let facts get in the way of a good punchline. Rohit, true to form, played a two-minute cameo, thereby doing his bit to endorse his favourite brand, Maggi two-minute noodles.
With MI under pressure as the asking rate mounted, Christian did his bit to propagate the virtues of Christian charity, which would later earn him both accolades and brick-bats from his team-mates. Even an otherwise pre-occupied Sid Mallya took notice of Christian.
Later, Ravi Shastri, in an exclusive for The Unreal Times, interviewed victorious RCB players in their dressing room:
Ravi Shastri: Excellent game, Virat! What is the mood like, in the dressing room? What is your main takeaway from this?
Virat Kohli (looking hazed): From now on, we’re gonna have Gayle and myself in the batting department, followed by nine bowlers. It won’t make much of a difference to the batting. I can keep wickets.
Ravi then catches up with the giant Jamaican in his dressing room. Five cheerleaders shriek and run out as Shastri gingerly enters.
Ravi Shastri: Chris, excellent game for you, although it went all the way down to the wire! What made you unleash yourself in the middle of the innings?
Chris Gayle: During the strategic timeout, I was given an earphone and made to listen to Laxman Sivaramakrishnan’s commentary …and it irritated me enough to smash every ball outta the park.
Ravi Shastri (completely ignoring what Gayle just said): You’ve started off in style, Chris! Anything you wish that could’ve gone better?
Chris Gayle: Yeah, maan, I’d love it if I get some salary too, for all my efforts.
RCB players abruptly get up from their seats and give Gayle a standing ovation.
Ravi then walks over the MI dressing room where the mood is understandably downbeat.
Ravi Shastri: Well, Ricky… good game, but bad luck?
Ricky Ponting: Well, yeah Ravi. We wanted to do it for Sachin… (shrugs) ..on the bright side, Karthik played really well!
Dinesh Karthik: Thank you Ricky!
Arun Karthik: Thank you Ricky!
Murali Kartik: Thank you Ricky!
Fade out, as Ricky Ponting is seen scratching his head in bewilderment.
(Ashwin Kumar is an untrained musician, singer, writer/blogger, satirist, T Rajendar (pseudo)-fanatic, mimic, passionate about stopping female foeticide. The above article is reproduced with permission from http://www.theunrealtimes.com/, one of the top websites for satire, spoof, parody and humour in India.)