Thursday, August 6, 2020
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Entertainers who ease tense match pressure

Mirpur: An India-Pakistan match is always a tense battle, but very often the pressure is eased with some hilarious comments from outside the field. Apart from the cricketers, a number of entertainers are seen off the field — it could be anybody from fans, scribes and volunteers.

Very often, the non-performers of the day are the target for their jokes. When Shahid Afridi failed to score against India, a frustrated Pakistan scribe commented: “Afridi is like the flashing stumps. Only rarely does he sparkle.”

Kamran Akmal, after his run out, stood and stared at his partner Ahmad Shehzad for calling for a run and then sending him back. The organisers, in order to provide a festive atmosphere, lit up the sky with fireworks after the fall of every wicket and while Akmal continued to stare, it exploded. “It is good that the organisers came up with such an idea …it woke up Akmal, or else he would have continued to stare at Shehzad,” remarked a volunteer. Interestingly, Shehzad did not even apologise but smiled at an angry Akmal instead.

The DJ Zone situated over Grand Stand was decorated with the two Tiger heads with its eye colour changing between red and green. After the fall of a wicket, it even exhaled smoke. Though it was meant to entertain the crowd, a spectator was heard saying: “It is good I did not bring my child for the match. She would have been extremely frightened seeing this.”

There are many who support Pakistan. Mohammad Haji, whom I met during dinner break, was born in Lahore. “As you may know, our country was a part of Pakistan; but when we got separated I settled in Dhaka. I enjoy cricket, but it is unfortunate that both Bangladesh and Pakistan are unpredictable teams. If it is my good day, they win.”

Caribbean Chris Gayle is not only an entertainer with his bat. His comments are equally enjoyable. When he was asked about his batting, he remarked: “I bat right handed these days: I am done with batting left-handed.” He even joked about a Bangladeshi bowler Shohag Gazi whose first delivery in Test cricket was hit for a six by him. “He is in the history books because of me.

I made him famous,” he noted.