Is the media to blame for Team India’s worries?

India Drown Under. Surrender Down Under. Wallopped! Tigers at home, lambs abroad.

The adjectives are tripping off TV screens and sports pages, following the precipitous fall in Indian performance in Australia, where the 0-3 scoreline looks less from a cricket series, more from a tennis match.

The blame, as usual, is being laid at the door of the IPL and the surfeit of Twenty20 cricket. The cricket board is being slammed for ignoring domestic cricket, for short sighted selection, etc.

But how much of the blame does the media carry?

Calcutta-born Andy O’ Brien, a former journalist with Sportsworld magazine, now happily settled in Australia, on the debacle of Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his World Cup winning boys, in The Telegraph, Calcutta:

“If one was to compile international media clippings of this tour, mention of Sachin Tendulkar‘s milestone would probably outnumber 10:1 any analysis of the outcome of a Test match or the shortcomings of the Indian team….

“Are Indian cricket fans more interested in Sachin getting his century of centuries or in winning a Test series? Or is the truth that this almost cosmetic overemphasis on the peripheral is a coincidental cover-up of the fact that, by and large, Indian cricket reporters tend to be too soft on their cricketers?

“Not many are willing to bite the proverbial bullet and risk their “contacts” with the team or the hierarchy. If always seemed to me, even when I was a part of this wonderful hardworking group of people, that the business is not so much about writing or cricket, but what contacts you have and can tap, to produce a “cosmetic/glamour” story with banner headlines.

“That trend has grown and as a result many reports now deal with either the mundane or the inconsequential part of the game.”

Photograph: Australian captain Michael Clarke tosses the coin at the start of the third Test match against India in Perth, as captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni looks on, with ICC match referee Ranjan Madugalle (right) and Channel 9 host, Mark Nicholas.

Read the full article: Let go of that cockiness and arrogance

Also read: ‘Today’s cricket journos are chamchas of cricketers’

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14 Responses to “Is the media to blame for Team India’s worries?”

  1. Nastika Says:

    India has *never* won a series in Australia. When the oldies (read Sachin, Dravid, Ganguly & Laxman) were at their peak, at best they matched to square the series once. Now oldies have grown old (read less reflexes), the why the hullabaloo this time?

    Other points:
    1) If India can’t do away with oldies, then they have get Vishwanath, Vensarkar, Gavaskar, Kapil Dev & other oldies back in team for company in current team. Because they were, at one point of time were best too.

    2) Probabaly the ‘goal’ for current Indian team is not to win but get a century for Sachin.


  2. ERR Says:

    Don Bradman retired from Test cricket when he was bowled by Eric Hollies second ball for a duck when all he needed was four runs to take his average to 100. Unlike they do in subcontinent, Bradman did not come out of retirement to make sure his average reaches 100! Mark Taylor declared when his score was 334 not out , a record which he shared with Bradman. To Taylor, being bracketed with Don was bigger than overtaking him. Michael Clarke in Sydney did not go after Lara’s 400 or even Hayden’s 380. He declared their Innings when he was 329 not out and given the Indian bawling, yes bawling this series- he could have scored 500 that day!
    In subcontinent we are more interested in individual milestones.If Sachin had scored 100, the team’s debacle would have forgotten, every State Govt. would have lined up to give crores,the TV media would have permanent froth-in- mouth coverage . Government is desperately waiting to give Bharath Rathna to take Public’s mind off 2G / Anna..

  3. Nastika Says:

    @ERR, if anyone in India (or sub-continent) does what Bradman, Taylor or Clarke did, he will be ridiculed as ‘Gandhi’ and that he is not ‘smart’.

    In our country, being selfish is considered highest virtue.


  4. Prasad Says:

    No not at all! The team before departure saw a White crow, this is the reason!

  5. Anand Baradi Says:

    Tendulkar and his 100th ton is sacrosanct for the most of his fans(minus me) , since there numbers are myriad one should bear a caution
    but u know what? time an again individual records seems to take precedence over team

    I never banked this series on the usual suspects(Sachin ,Dhoni , Dravid , Gautam ) coz i was sure about their outcomes

    But the disappointment was Viru and Laxman
    Poor Laxman would be made the scape goat after this tour
    But the biggest disappointment was Viru , he started good but latter never showed his flamboyance , looking at Viru and the media reports
    I seriously suspect that ‘Ideas of March’ is being played in the team

    The media just amplifies the issue not entirely based on fact but based on the individual reporter’s will and whims

  6. G Says:

    agree with @ERR.

    One of my friend only watched the match till SRT batted in the hope that SRT will score a 100 and he used to comment that he is only bothered about SRT’s 100 than whether the team wins or not…

    When we have fans like my friend what better can we expect…

  7. pdk Says:

    C’mon let’s not divert the attention. The bunch of jokers called selectors should take the majority of the blame. When a member of the selection panel, Srikkanth, can go on TV and praise a member of the team, Tendulkar, sky high on every available occasion (and at least a few years ago they were available almost 24×7 it seems), what kind of team would they be selecting? The jokers don’t look beyond their noses, let alone a few years down the line.

  8. dr ramesh Says:

    Till date, no journalist in english media,electronic and press has the guts and gumption to say that sachin tendulkar has been a liability for the indian test side from past three years. Rahul dravid has scored over thousand runs last test season, yet he is being made scape goat . Rahul dravid easily is the best batsman india has produced since vijay hazare and gavaskar. He is many notches above tendulkar when it comes to test cricket. Laxman has been a very reliable batsman, definitely more consistent and effective than tendulkar in test cricket. Sadly laxman has always performed well inspite of axe of being dropped hanging on him. Being gentlemen cricketers, they will graciously go. But tendulkar?

  9. Faldo Says:

    I think most news stories have failed to confront the elephant in the room, which is the fact that our top Test batsmen are advancing in years and perhaps come up a little bit short when it comes to facing top class pace bowling on lively pitches. Their recent form too has been ignored.
    Even after the England debacle and the insipid showing in the domestic series that followed, there was no major hue and cry raised about our batting failures. Instead, there was a lot of discussion on relatively inconsequential points like Sachin’s record etc. The premise of the selectors that the current team is the one that is the best is wrong. While selecting the team for Tests only past records seem to have mattered. The most recent form and domestic record have been considered only in the shorter versions of the game.

    In the past at least some of the news reporters would not hesitate to question the great players of the time. Gavaskar or Kapil even at their peak, were roundly criticized if their showing was not up to the mark.

  10. Galdo Says:

    It’s simple.
    Indians don’t have that in their genes.
    Short stature, weak in sex and self indugence.
    They are still to evolve to compete with caucasian blood – superior built, mesmerizing smiles and the body language uff amazing – treat to watch.

    when they talk in terms of bit*hes the females are normally ok with that since sex is just a habitual thing there – the same thing in India is a big taboo (even if one wants to disagree in awe of 21st century and all) but still our north Indian b*st*rd cricketers want to learn those mannerisms and copy them. They will naturally fail.
    While those from south of Vindhyas try to be gentlemen while they know its all fake. I watched a recent video where they got auctioned and Dravid and Ganguly accepted to dress up english chicks with sarees. the fuck double minded they are – they can never win with this double mindedness.

    The fact is I have seen only one set of killer eyes till now in India. That is Kapil Dev..
    Character and killer instinct shows in actions . He tried ICL but never bent to BCCI.
    That is leadership. He knows the rules of game. He is not a great speaker but a born leader who can .

    But we need 11 pairs of killer eyes . Sadly that isn’t the case.

  11. Simple Says:

    Nobody is going to retire. So only way is to throw them out of the team. Every player wants to play endlessly.That is the greed of old age. Greed to attach more centuries, more wickets, more runs to ones names.

    Kumble, Sourav, Kapil were all forced to quit . Ditto will be the case of these other middle aged guys.

  12. greendoors Says:

    Galdo, what are you saying..
    Have you seen the short Sachin blast Mcgrath, Warne, and Akram to sixes? They are world class bowlers, and fast except Warne.
    Haven’t you seen Viru do the same? Haven’t you seen Yuvraj hit six 6’s off a white man’s bowling?
    Only because Caucasians are better built and do well at their home pitches doesn’t make them superior.

  13. Bharadwaj Says:

    India should diversify in sports and encourage football ( soccer), rugby etc.. These players are worshipped like God, something only a third world country should do. Corruption, nepotism and politics are the hallmarks in any area of human endeavour in India.

  14. Galdo Says:


    forget about stats . that can be turned on anyone’s side.

    Just look at the inability to face bouncers. look at the reflexes, look at the body language, the fat tummies, drooping shoulders, drooping eyes and the fear in the eyes, the mind of the richest cricketers – look like they all collectively mast*rbate and come to field with fear.

    Michael Clarke, Ricky Ponting , Jonty Rhodes, Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh etc – they are medium built , but see their body language on field.
    They stay there until they are fit to kill and roar and then respectfully exit – either by system or by themselves.

    I am not favouring caucasians . But I am willing to if they show that they are leaders.
    I still laud Kapil Dev’s body language – those kinds have to be assembled. It should look like a cricket team.

    Indian team is like bunch of jokers doing a government job from 9 to 5.

    For example, in Bengaluru there are 7 odd clubs and each have a nepotistic intentions – one a brahmin , one a muslim one in basvanagudi and so on sharing their powers with KSCA. none of them look for rural talents nor anyone speak Kannada. forget about other cities of the relatively big state of south!!

    how do they expect real raw talents to come up except those growing in cities who can speak english?

    they will need to learn english to play cricket. that’s the situation.

    Cricketers should be taken from NCC camps , Adventure camps, Army cadre , Police force ,Naxal groups , (to bring them to mainstream) etc and then groomed with lifestyle basics.
    Eligibility must be based on reflexes , swiftness , body mass ratio and related abilities.
    Once this is met rest of things fall in place to defend the 3 wickets.

    There lies the killer India , rest all are couch potatoes – dressed up in fine suits for whom standard sizes don’t fit and if undressed will show up timid package to be ashamed of.

    Sadly the country is grooming excellent slurppy ladies with the colour of prostitution in all fields who normally get exported out to first world and men are neglected to grow in the fashion they should be.

    And there comes the gene factor –
    the inability to groom bodies and mind of fearlessness,
    the inability to groom younger generation,
    the inability to step on greed and make way for team of strength,
    the inability to find a replacement and then exit

    – just see the shameless army chief is fighting for one more year!

    I am just sorry for wonderful ladies in the subcontinent – you are just born to losers who cannot be men of honour.

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