There is an old saying that “Empty vessels make more noise.” This has been the case with Moin Khan. The media has not been paying any attention to his opinions, and our man felt he needs to make a fuss out of nothing. In came a series of scornful remarks, which lacks coherency or logic. One who follows his articles in the newspapers gets an impression that he is a crackpot.

He started his new campaign with statements such as “Sachin is scared of Shoaib; and that is why he walked away despite not getting a nick in the Faisalabad Test!” How can any sane guy come up with such an abysmal reason? I can understand if he is reasoning out that Sachin’s form has dipped over the years, and he is in the twilight of his career. That would have been a much more convincing and natural reason to argue on Tendulkar’s career. ( I have a different opinion though.Sachin’s career is far from over. Go Sachin!) The prediction based on this scare factor is something ridiculous.

Now here is an excerpt from his latest article in The Hindu dated Thursday, Feb 9th 2006.

Unsporting appeal by India

Moin Khan

`Dravid has let himself and his team down’

— Photo: S. Subramanium

TIMELY REMINDER: Being a seasoned campaigner Inzamam-ul-Haq has to be thorough with the rules of the game in order to be a perfect role model.

I believe it was very unsporting of the Indian cricket team to appeal against Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq for obstructing the field and that too at a very crucial stage of the first One-Day International at Peshawar. To me, it appears that the Indian team was desperate to win the game by hook or by crook, no matter even if it came at the expense of the norms of this sport known as the gentleman’s game.

I don’t blame Suresh Raina for throwing and then appealing. He is new to the game and his enthusiasm is understandable. But the back-up by skipper Rahul Dravid is deplorable. He is not new to the sport and should have realised what consequences his decision would have on the series (being played under the banner of Friendship) and likewise, on his personality.

Spirit of the game

A captain needs to stand tall and handle situations, specially when they come at critical stages of the game and, I think, Dravid has not only let himself down but also his team. I am dead sure that if Sourav Ganguly had been captain, the matter would have been defused tactfully and sportingly. But probably Dravid still needs to go a long way before he can fit properly into Sourav’s shoes.

I understand that according to the laws of the game, Inzamam was out and if he does not know the laws, then it is not the fault of the law but Inzamam himself. But my point is that there are several cricketing laws that we don’t follow because they are not considered within the spirit of the game.

Batsmen don’t run for singles or twos when the ball is deflected off their bodies or bats from throws, batsmen pick the ball and throw it to the close-in fielder or the bowler when it falls close to them. So much so, when Greg Chappell told his brother Trevor to bowl the last ball under-arm, it was also within the laws of the game.

(Incomplete)

What credibility does he have to make such a comment?

Let us go back in time to the Chennai Test in 1999 (I am not sure of the dates) India tour of Pakistan. India lost the match by 12 runs, despitea valiant century by Sachin. During the match, Moin Khan makes a blatantly false appeal for a catch off Ganguly after the ball had clearly gone off the shin pad of silly point into the ground, and the fielder picked the ball after one bounce. Moin Khan appeals, umpire Rudi Coertzen confirms with the leg umpire and gives the verdict against the batsman.

Where was the idealist and gentleman inside him then? Was he a barbarian then by any chance? And mind you, the Indo Pak relations was much worse that time, compared to now. Considering Ganguly’s form during that period, one could conclude that the bad decision cost India the match.

Coming back to the Inzy issue, there is nothing wrong in the decision, as rules are rules, and the rulemakers know the fact that Cricket is a gentleman’s game more than you. The rules are to be followed if made, and there need not be any exception for them.

Mr. Moin’s argument of not following some rules as they are bad for the game’s appeal, is utter nonsense and doesn’t hold any ground. The non-stop sledging of the golden boy Afridi is something which is a part of the game spirit and the gentlemanship, isn’t it right Mr. Khan?

In Moin’s comment, I could see a person who is very low on self esteem, and a desperate attention seeker. He is in a situation where Sidhu was two years back. What will you accomplish by making unjustifiable comment like this Mr. Moin? May be its time you look at your ideologies and principles before talking about others.

In the future, Mr. Khan, please watch your words. Don’t make provoking statements such as India trying to win the match through hook or crook. What were Pakis trying for long? Is ball tampering, that you guys practiced some divine way of winning the match?

Shame on you Mr. Khan.

Finally, a small digression from the topic, my website is finally up, one can check it up at http://geocities.com/narayanansreejith


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