Saturday, September 19, 2009

Cricket Then and Now - The Changing Face of Cricket Commentary

Cricket Then and Now - The Changing Face of Cricket Commentary

The game of Cricket has changed not just for the players but also for the viewers or should I say listeners? For it was as listeners to the commentary on AIR that we first got attracted to the game. The commentary team of Jasdev Singh, Sushil Doshi & Co. kept the entire nation riveted to their radio sets- transistors for the more fortunate ones – with their graphic description of each and every incident on and off the field. The commentary for the most part was restricted to describe the game rather than being judgemental, as is the case nowadays. Of course, an expert commentator- someone like Lala Amarnath – would occasionally chip in with his precious gems but such comments were few and far between.

Cricket those days was certainly the in thing but was still far away from being a religion. It was pure fun to listen to the commentary and the place next to the radio set was the most coveted one. The radio set, usually a Murphy, would stutter in between and had to be prodded gently occasionally and not so gently on other occasions with thumps to make it work. Throw in a cup of steaming tea and hot pakoras and it was unbridled fun all the way. The vicarious pleasure we got whenever the ball was sent over the ropes, a wicket fell or victory was achieved was simply out of this world. And yes, there were no ads to distract you from the pure pleasure.

Times have changed. Now we have commentators- mostly ex players – who take perverse delight in dissecting the performances of players just like a surgeon. He exchanges between commentating and providing expert insight into the game at the same time. The marketing people are always looking for the slightest window of opportunity to put in their ads, even if means denying the viewers some of the best moments of the match. The technology has also improved by leaps and bounds with sundry gadgets like Hawk Eye, Speedometer, Snickometer, Stump Vision etc. in operation. It is, however, debatable whether they have added to the game or taken away the human angle from the game totally.

I, for one, would still prefer the lines immortalized by Sushil Doshi: “ Apne aap ko gaind ki line se aakri waqt par alag kiya aur gaind ko wicketkeeper ke paas jaane ka raasta diya”.

Guest Post by Deepa Sinha - I am a fun loving person who writes just for pleasure.

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1 comment:

anu said...

Few days back,I was wondering that why have I lost interest in my most interesting game during the teenage days.........U have given me the answer!!! Thanks!!!