Saturday, March 03, 2007

A classic anti-eulogy

Shoaib Akhtar has been exposed to many critical journalistic pieces in the years since he burst onto world cricket scene in 1997. Quite often, these pieces were penned by Pakistani journalists, and I dare say, they expressed some of the ambivalence the Pakistani cricket fan felt. One reason why Laxmipathy Balaji was so popular in Pakistan during the 2004 tour was because he had smashed Shoaib for a six, and in the eyes of many, given that 'paindu', that 'akhrot', his comeuppance. I've never had a fond feeling for Shoaib, despite admiring some of his bowling exploits during the 1999 tour of India. Over the years, my thoughts about him hardened into an intense dislike. I won't bother to rattle off my catalog of complaints, becaue, quite simply, they're just repetitions of what everyone of his non-fans has expressed over the years. Now, Peter Roebuck finally decides to go medieval on Shoaib. Its not everyday that a cricketer's career ends on a note like this.

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