The Press Tent: Border-Gavaskar edition
We wanted to move on from the unmitigated nonsense that has come out of the coverage of the current Test series between India and Australia, but the bullshit from both sides of the team and media divide has made that impossible. It is like a drunken argument between two idiots from which both come out of it looking like complete pricks. We have loved it.
Before the game got underway India’s coach, Anil Kumble was quoted as saying he was pleased that both teams had agreed to move on from the fractious Test match in Bangalore.
“I think what was important was to bring the focus back on cricket and I am really glad that the BCCI took a mature call along with Cricket Australia to issue a joint statement that cricket needs to move on and we have moved on from whatever happened in that background,” Kumble said.
No one had told Virat Kohli and the Australian media as a heated exchange took place between Andrew Wu in the press conference before the Ranchi Test.
“Just to clarify. You stand by your claims? And secondly, do you think it is appropriate for an international captain can make serious allegations like that and not produce evidence to substantiate it?” Wu asked.
“And what is that allegation called?” Kohli asked before suggesting an agenda from the Australian media. “Everyone sitting here has their own interests and choose to ask what they want to,” India’s captain said.
The ICC have sent Richie Richardson to get everyone to calm the fuck down according to the Australian Daily Telegraph.
“One of cricket’s most mild-mannered gentlemen has been called in to mediate peace talks between Virat Kohli and Steve Smith next week, after Australia pulled an extraordinary power play to put India back in its box,” Ben Horne wrote.
“Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland stood up to the BCCI’s schoolyard bullies in a late-night meeting in Mumbai and within two hours a report filed by India to the ICC charging Smith and Peter Handscomb with abusing the spirit of cricket was sensationally withdrawn.”
It certainly looks like Richardson arriving hasn’t got the media to tone down its language. Horne featured in last week’s Press Tent accusing Kohli of being “villainous” in his behaviour and is now calling India bullies. He could be with sitting down with Richardson himself.
Sunil Gavaskar, a man who was reportedly the highest paid employee of the Indian cricket board in 2014, was unhappy with what he felt was biased reporting by the Australian media.
“We should not bother too much about the Australian media and what they write as they are an extension of their cricket team’s support staff. The focus now should shift to cricket from off-the-field issues,” Gavaskar told NDTV.
As the man who fronts the BCCI’s in house coverage of this Test series he is well placed to spot when a member of the media has the backs of their team.
The Mumbai Mirror have reported that the cosy relationship between the Australian media and the team management leads to “Beer Day” meetings where they are fed with stories.
“Now it has come to light that such stories emerge during ‘Beer Day’ meetings, which the Australian team management holds with its media. And that makes us wonder as to the kind of stories that would be reported if the Team India coach were to hold such meetings.”
As far as we can work out from our contacts who are in India from the Australian media these suggested meetings are a fantasy.
Away from the nonsense lingering around from the last Test we had more hilarious Australian whinging about the pitch in Ranchi. Shane Warne tweeted that it was a “horror pitch” before a ball had been bowled.
The Australians in India were furious tweeting pictures of the pitch suggesting that it was going to favour the home team by giving big turn. The panic amongst the Australian media and within the camp was frantic.
Aussie journalist Adam Collins was expressing his incredulity at the surface when he arrived at the ground the day before the match. “I guess that is… the pitch? Blimey.”
“Australia have walked into an India-endorsed stitch up as suspicion grows the hosts have been delivered a tailor-made wicket designed to blunt Australia’s pace weapons and dull the effect of Nathan Lyon,” Andrew Wu wrote in the Sydney Morning Herald.
“The Australian camp was stunned on Tuesday by the state of the pitch at the Jharkhand State Cricket Association Stadium as the prospect of another short Test looms large on a strip expected to play low and slow,” Wu continued before referring to the “latest pitch doctoring storm”.
There was only one problem with this latest moaning from Australians about a pitch that might not play exactly like an Australian one. The surface was absolutely fine. Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell both made hundreds on a pitch with decent pace and carry that hardly turned.
“Ranchi pitch is playing way better than anyone expected. Retractions being drafted. Best first session deck of series,” Peter Lalor of the The Australian tweeted just hours after writing that there would be no pace and carry in Ranchi.
When Smith brought up his 19th Test hundred continuing his ridiculous form this moment of triumph for the Aussie skipper was another excuse to ramp up the hatred between these two teams. According to the Daily Telegraph none of the India fielders applauded Smith’s hundred.
“India’s cricketers have been accused of reigniting a simmering feud with the Australians in the third Test after an apparent snub of Steve Smith. The skipper batted for most of the day, facing 244 balls in scoring his 19th century, one of the finest of his Test career. But the response from the Indian players was near-silence, with suggestions that only stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane bothered to applaud the Australian’s milestone.”
Can these two teams just play each other every week until the end of time?
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