Also: A goof up leads to Ravindra Jadeja getting more crores
New Delhi/Mumbai: The curtains on the IPL 5 may have come down, but the curtains on yet another explosive controversy on the already contentious tournament seem to be going up.
Allegations are now rife that the result of the final was fixed to favour the Kolkata Knightriders to create an impression that there was no fixing in the IPL tournament.
‘If Chennai Super Kings had won it would have confirmed that there was ‘fixing’ in the tournament. But by ‘fixing’ the result in favour of Kolkata Knightriders they are trying to create a false impression that there was no ‘fixing’ in the tournament,’ the irrepressible Kirti Azad told newsmen here today.
The former international cricketer, who is on a mission to save Indian cricket by undertaking carefully calibrated fasts for a few hours between meals and small eats everyday, alleged that the two ‘eliminator’ matches were fixed in favour of the Chennai Super Kings. ‘But they were instances of simple fixing without any ulterior motive’, Azad said.
‘When word got around on the way the Chennai made it to the playoffs and the manner in which it won the ‘Eliminator’, the powers that be got alerted. In order to fool the world that there was no fixing in the IPL they have gone ahead and fixed the finals in favour of KKR’, Azad explained.
‘If Chennai had won, it would have categorically proved that there was match-fixing in the IPL. But now that KKR has triumphed, it even more establishes that there is rampant match-fixing in the IPL,’ Azad logically said.
Azad pointed out that there were tell-tale evidences to prove that the IPL final was set up to make Kolkata victors. ‘Out of the blue, just at the start of the match, they controversially drop Brendon McCullum,’ Azad said and added: ‘McCullum has played just one innings of note —- that too in the very first match of the first edition of the IPL — in the last five years. After that there has been very little difference between him and the team’s kit. But KKR has been consistently playing McCullum and more or less ensuring that the team did not make it to the last four in the previous editions. When such a player is dropped, you know some dark forces are at work to ensure KKR’s victory, despite the team generally working to the contrary’.
Azad said that the IPL, and Indian cricket in general, had been debased to such a degree that even established traditions of the game, like match-fixing, were coming under a cloud. ‘We have reached a stage where there is fixing to prove that there is no fixing’.
As a mark of strong protest to the latest development, Azad is expected to undertake a fast during his sleep tomorrow, sources said.
Elsewhere, noted historian and cricket intellectual Ramachandra Guha, in a brilliant scathing piece, has pointed out how fixing matches to ‘favour one particular team’ leads to crony capitalism within the betting syndicates and erodes the democracy. Bringing all his undoubted erudition to the fore, Ramachandra Guha argued for an egalitarian and democratic set-up where a tournament can be fixed to favour all participating teams.
Another historian and intellectual Mukul Kesavan, in his typical forthright way, has argued that fixing to prove there is no fixing in matches is a clear case of decadence that has set over betting industry. ‘An industry becomes decadent when its rhythms are tweaked to remake it into an unexpected spectacle,’ he said and added ‘the IPL, in terms of fixing, has become such a honeypot, that the traditional line between those who fix matches to win and those who fix matches to mislead has blurred’.
Meanwhile, a small, but a perfectly understandable, goof up on the part of the personnel in charge of doling out the BCCI grant for former players, has lead to Chennai Super Kings star player Ravindra Jadeja becoming richer by a few more crores of rupees.
The BCCI personnel, while giving the cheques to former players, presented one to Ravindra Jadeja too during the finals yesterday. Asked why Jadeja was given the cheque when he was not a former player, the BCCI staff confessed that there might have been a technical error. ‘But we are not to blame. In yesterday’s match, in which Jadeja was pretty much part of, his contribution was as much, if not less, than that of Farookh Engineer who had retired from the game several decades back. So our confusion was understandable’.
(Disclaimer: Going by his ability to get several crores of rupees without practically doing anything, Jadeja, logically, should be frontrunner for the country’s President’s post)