Our considerate Mr Lalit Modi was bent on watching his "baby" grow up in a trouble-free environment. Modi made sure that his brainchild - having learnt to crawl and toddle on home turf - went on to walk, stroll and roll, albeit on alien territory. Damn impressive! With all odds against the tournament, one had thought it might not even see the light of the day in its very next season.
My friend Preeti is clearly miffed with the IPL turning into NRI Premier League (read Na Rahaa Indian Premier League) and so are many Indian fans. I share your sentiments but the fact that the venue is South Africa somewhat consoled me (I simply love the way cricket tournaments turn into carnivals there! The 2003 World Cup and Twenty20 World Cup only reinforced my love).
I don't want to get into the debate of what kind of political, defence, global or security statements this shift has made. Oh, please. No more 'crap' intellectual discussions now! After some serious cricket and some unfortunate incidents, it's time for the game to give itself a shot in the arm and get into the party mode. Don't you agree?
But the inaugural year was quite happening (in every sense). So I just thought of making a small list of what should or shouldn't be done or happen this year.
First the Do's
1. Have a blast there...(Please note: This suggestion is NOT for the fanatics)
2. This one is for the Royal Challengers...Guys! Don't act royal but respond to the challenges. KP alone cannot switch the fortunes of Vijay Mallya's team and you don't want to see your boss more 'Red'. So fight hard and bring on some 'Good Times' for him.
3. And Deccan Chargers, you guys need some clairvoyant or astrologer. In short, do something to bring on some good luck. That's the only important thing that you lacked last year.
And now the Don'ts
1. The game has allowed everybody to fight hard but still restrain from hitting the opponent. No matter how strong the urge is! Not only because it's 'ungentlemanly', but also because someone can still hear the sound of that 'Slap' reverberating in his bank account.
And hey, what are the beamers for? Ooops!!!
2. Don't be too cozy with your Boss's ladylove, no matter how Preity, I mean pretty, she is.
This can also be read as a statutory 'Warne'ing. Keep in mind, the 'Big Boss' is watching.
Anyway, the teams are toying with new ideas and "experiments". So beware!
3. Last year Warne had caught Ganguly on the wrong foot when he saw a piece of paper falling out of his pocket. Probably he thought Dada had all his strategies and plans on it. So Dada and all his knights, this time remember what you are supposed to do on the field. But most importantly, remember who the captain is. OK???