- Rise of the non-playing captains.
Who wore it better? Eoin Morgan or Darren Sammy? Is a captain who comes in early and gets out promptly a better non-playing captain or is that distinction more worthy of the captain who doesn’t come in unless absolutely necessary and even then exits at the earliest opportunity? Whosoever’s side you take, you can’t deny that the secret to success in the T20 format is having a non-playing captain. Players it seems don’t want to be led from the front, they want to be cheered on by a captain who’s position in the side is justified only by the ability of the rest to successfully carry him.
- Never not jumping at an opportunity to plug Klusener.
17 years. That’s how long it’s taken me to find a mate for Lance Klusener. 273 runs at an average of 136.50 and in addition, being in the thick of action in the final moments of a semifinal exit. Klusener, himself, would’ve thought I was talking about him. Klusener, himself, would’ve gone “Oh boy, here we go again.” But no, Klusener’s stats were marginally different and marginally better- 281 runs at an average of 140.50 and 17 wickets at an average of 20.58. I’m optimistic that slight difference won’t come in the way of the friendship that is now destined to blossom between the two kindred souls.
- The cult of Stokes.
From one bonafide cult hero finding a friend to another bonafide cult hero bursting on to the scene. The cult of Stokes isn’t driven by performance. The cult of Stokes is self-perpetuating, it’s an island unto itself. It’s worship in its purest form. When Stokes walks in to the wicket with his team deep in the hole, do we expect him to dig his team out of the hole? Hell no. If anything, we expect him to get out in a fashion that makes the commentator’s job easy, that helps the commentator bring out the phrase “that dismissal really sums up the morning for England.” At the same time, Stokes is perfectly capable of turning a match on its head with his batting or bowling or fielding. Stokes is what you get if you combine Bendtner with Ibrahimovic. Stokes is that well-established rare breed of an athlete that gives shape to an event. He may help you win a test series overseas or he may go off on a sequence of ducks, but one’s neither better nor worse than the other. They’re both Stokes being Stokes, and they’re both transcendental. Like infinity and like allah, he’s above all comprehension, he cannot be encapsulated.
How to join the cult of Stokes:
- Become physically capable of the pose taken by him in the pic above.
- Never question his choice of shot or of bowling length. He works in mysterious ways.
- Never take his name in vain. There can be no disappointment when it comes to Stokes because you love everything about Stokes.
- At least once in your lifetime, you should visit the locker Stokes broke his wrist against in anger.
- There can be no successor or replacement to Stokes.
- You shouldn’t accord any importance to the date of his Cape Town knock. Once again, Stokes can’t be limited or defined by his performances, or by anything else for that matter. Doing so will be blasphemous and the punishment involves being made to sit through a test match in India.
- You have the mandate to protect the dignity of red-heads the world over.
- You should treat statistics with the same disregard that Scientology has for the field of psychiatry.
- This list is dynamic and will continue to grow as the revelations come in.
Note: The best of movements come to life in the utter anonymity of the inauspicious. Notice how the topic at hand is only one of three sub-headers.