Lopsided Lopsy

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There are two sides to every story, yes, but until we've heard Lonwabo Tsotsobe's version – other than his juvenile Twitter rant – of what went wrong at Essex, it's open gates on the South African fast bowler.

There are two sides to every story, yes, but until we've heard Lonwabo Tsotsobe's version – other than his juvenile Twitter rant – of what went wrong at Essex, it's open gates on the South African fast bowler.

Accusations of 'lack of preparation, downright rudeness and an attitude and work rate not to the standard of an international cricketer' from Essex coach Paul Grayson don't seem becoming of the modest 27-year-old at first glance, but at second turn there's every reason to sympathise with but not necessarily condone Tsotsobe's resentment.

Having steadily risen through the ranks to now sit third in command to Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel in the nation's pace ranks, the left-armer has led a relatively carefree life in a setup entirely accommodating of its new crop. Camaraderie and cliques abound in the Proteas camp, and although another premature World Cup exit will have dented their collective end to the season, aspirations across the Indian Premier League were always going to provide the individual with lucrative solace.

Jacques Kallis has since picked up on his superb stretch of form in the 2010 IPL with more of the run-heavy same this year, AB de Villiers has made the most of his move from the Daredevils to Bangalore, Morne Morkel proved a lone rose among a plethora of Delhi thorns and Albie Morkel cashed in – quite literally – at the Super Kings.

Meanwhile, fringe players – Colin Ingram, David Miller, Charl Langeveldt, Jonathan Vandier, Rilee Rossouw and Rusty Theron – have enjoyed a veritable Indian holiday, with the bill footed by the respective franchises.

All the while, as his countrymen lapped up the sun, riches and pseudo fame of the Twenty20 shindig on the go in Mumbai and surrounds, Tsotsobe was committed to the sorry English weather and County Championship Division Two meanderings of Essex.

Essentially on the back foot from the very outset of his stint at Chelmsford after failing to fetch a successful bid at the IPL player auction in January, a string of shoddy form – in a foreign system void of the familiarity and companionship Tsotsobe has garnered with the Proteas – only served to further compound his severe bout of FOMO (fear of missing out).

With the lure of social-networking during a particularly bad day at the office at the ready, Tsotsobe's homesick reasoning was ripe for the picking – and hence his rogue Tweet.

Rather than manning up to something along similar lines to his mature comments – "It woke me up and said to me that I have to work harder each day. I am still part of the team" – he delivered on the back of his Man of the Match award against Bangladesh in the World Cup, instead "Ive never felt like ths eva. Ths is the worst two mnths of my life. And u know wen u start regretin urself it aint gud. its just impossible to work in ths environment" whined across his Twitter feed this week – and for it Grayson's disappointment and SAA or BA's latest flight booking.

One marginal upside for the homeward-bound Tsotsobe going forward, though, is that no matter how much glitz, glam and millions of dollars the IPL upstages the county scene by, three months of quality first-class competition beats six weeks of Twenty20 fluff by a long shot in terms of real cricket experience.

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