The Indo-Aus Test series is back. As usual, with a bagful of spats. The first dose was given on day one of the first Test being currently played. When it comes to Test cricket, an India-Australia series is always a clash of the Titans. The question, as to what makes these series very special, is always hanging there. Is it purely absorbing cricket or the never ending interesting spats which add spice to nice Test cricket?
The recent spot-fixing dramas have put the game itself in an awkward spot and a fix. A few individuals have taken the game for a ride, causing severe dent to its pride. Fans and spectators have started losing their fixation over international cricket, thanks to the fixing episodes, adding suspicion as a prefix or suffix to every game. Though Ponting desired the current series to be controversy free, without anyone overstepping the line, he himself has triggered the expected. Ponting pointing his bat like a gun towards the Indians was a scene to watch. The Aussies, always used to throwing words at the opponents and pounding them with abundant sledging, are never used to being in the shoes of their opponents. One comment from Zaheer Khan was enough to make Ponting see red. Knowing the Aussies’ nature very well, it is still surprising as to why they always pick only the Indians for the famous spats? Read on………….
The Aussies, ever since they dislodged the West Indies from the top spot, have never been used to any sort of challenge. The word “challenge” was re-born for them in the form of Team India under the leadership of our Dada, somebody who looked at them eye to eye and there was no looking back since then for India. The fact is, the Aussies cannot accept any resistance or fight on the field. They only knew how to dominate and were never dominated. They weren’t used to being no match in a match - thus the increase in number of spats. Spats are not new between these famous rivals. One may recollect some of the most famous spats between these two cricketing giants: Chetan Chauhan-Thomson, Sandeep Patil-Pascoe, Gavaskar-Lillee, Watson-Gambhir, Dravid-Slater, Sreesanth-Hayden, Ishant-Symonds, Ganguly-Waugh, Ponting-Zaheer, Hayden-Bhajji and the most popular one, Bhajji-Symonds, where Symonds heard Bhajji’s “manki” baat!
As the recent spat proved, a small spark is enough to ignite one. No doubt the game on the field is very intense and any let up by a team puts them in a tense situation, thereby causing severe frustration. Given a choice between controversies like fixing and spats, one would always prefer the latter. At least these spats increase the fan’s enthusiasm and passion for the game. A casual off-the-cuff remark will always ensure high octane exchanges on the field. This is where adrenalin flows best. There is no doubt the game has been tarnished a bit of late. Such a classic series only can restore the fan’s faith in the game once again.
An Indo-Aus series will always produce a spate of spats and no rule can stop them. With another 7 days of Test cricket left, one can expect at least a few more, for sure. It is always preferable to have a spat-hetic series rather than fixing controversies which put the game itself in a pathetic situation……….