The ICC is doing what Kolte Seena ordered

R.S. KRISHNASWAMY writes: Forty years ago in the cricket playing fields of Mysore there was a giant of a batsman called ‘Kolte’ Seena. He appeared on the scene very briefly and used to bat at number 6. He swung at everything and connected 60 per cent of everything. His theory of cricket was that all deliveries there were meant to be hit, and when Seena hit them, they stayed hit.

I had fancied myself as a meaningful offspinner but, in one match I was clouted into the Crawford Hall steps (from the Oval ground), the corridor of the Attara Kacheris and the tennis courts of the Cosmpolitan Club tennis court by Kolte Seena.

This man, our Kolte Seena, would have been a made-to-rder batter for this “BCCI blessed” Twenty20 fiasco.

Cricket is a way of life and is not a carnival. The BCCI had very thoughtfully and decently rejected this version of the game just recently but changed its mind, or rather was rail-roaded to changing its mind, by the ICC who are rather desperate to fill up spectator stands all over the world.

Bowlers win cricket matches and Twenty20 is a death knell for the fine art of bowling which is already under annihilation by the 50 overs business.

Twenty20 is a 75-minute game of 20 slog overs without a breather. A bowler should find his line and length off the first ball. He also has to bowl a quickly decided bouncer, but only four of them in four overs. The bowler, poor fellow, should hurry through his four overs—if he delays even one bit, six runs are added even if the batsman is a rank idiot. A no-ball gets a free hit for the batsman, whatever it may mean.

Thus, the end result will be a batsman running to the middle, swinging at everything and running back. This kind of ridiculous nonsense could bring tears into E.A.S. Prasanna‘s eyes. The great Indian spin quartet of the 1960s and ’70s should collectively advise the BCCI president to drop the whole idea and simply concentrate on his “crops”!

Two people would have loved this form of the cricket. One an American pal of mine, who watched a Test match at my behest and remarked, “Hey, Krish, you mean to say that you need to run when you hit the ball, that’s easy?”

And, of course, Kolte Seena.