‘The first Virat Kohli’

That is how Ramesh Srivats assessed Virat Kohli’s place in the pantheon, in response to a reader question on whether VK is the next SRT: “He is the first Virat”.

The full “beer pe baashan” video above. (Okay, not “full” — the full version of conversations that take place when we get down to beer sessions is strictly NSFW. Oh, and apologies for the delay — things got unexpectedly undone).

In a piece as immaculately paced as the innings it celebrates, Siddharth Vaidhyanathan cuts to the beating heart of a Kohli special. By the end of it, Sid says, the real shock of what was accomplished is that it came as no shock at all.

That sense of inevitability is what kept Ramesh Srivats and I going over several more beers after we were done recording the latest episode of Gyandromeda, above. That, and the conundrum of the “thinking cricketer”.

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Rage of Angels

The best shot that Virat Kohli played this Sunday came after the match.

As he coped with the aftertaste of adrenalin, and as adoring teammates, past greats and present opponents took to social media to exhaust their stock of superlatives, Kohli’s first thought was this:

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History, reimagined

Politicians on the stump are a source of endless joy. Here, Amit Shah in Assam:

“We all know that Assam is the land of the brave. It is the land where Sukapha (Ahom king) had defeated the Mughals 17 times and drove them away. The same land is now being allowed to become the abode of illegal Bangladeshi infiltrators by the Congress government.

It’s a nice story. But, as I was pointing out on my Facebook page last night, some inconvenient facts get in the way of it. Sukhapaa, founder of the Ahom kingdom, died in 1268. Babar defeated Ibrahim Lodi and established the Mughal dynasty in 1526. Quite a feat, then, for the Ahom king to have defeated unnamed Mughals three centuries after his death.

PS: A meeting over lunch (which hopefully will be long, and liquid) and *the* game this evening, so am off blog for the duration. Have a happy Sunday, folks.

 

 

Open weekend thread

Right, off for the day. Open thread, folks — will check anything you leave in here, and respond if needed, sometime second half tomorrow when I get back online. Have a good weekend.

India vs Australia

When Ramesh Srivats and I were chatting over beer the other day, some questions about the team composition came up and Ramesh brought up two names: Rahane, and Harbhajan. The chat continued for another three hours after they turned the cameras off, and at some point the question of use of resources came up.

At what point in a league do you cut your losses and make changes? Ramesh’s point was that if changes had to be made, it should be for the game against Bangladesh, so there would be an opportunity to test the reserves out before what was clearly going to be a crunch game against Australia.

Didn’t happen. Or, as Ramesh put it:

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Oh, FFS!

I know election speeches are about emotive appeals, but — really?

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Electrifying news

A BJP press release dated January 31, 2016 listed a string of achievements of the Federal government, and stressed the importance of data, and of educating the public to the achievements of the government. The relevant clip:

It is necessary to show the statistics because in the Congress-led UPA-1 & UPA-2 regime, many of these indicators were moving in the opposite direction. Due to economic policies and reforms implemented by Modi government, not only have many indicators improved, but they have improved by large margins.

As statements go, this is unexceptional. It is necessary to monitor progress and to disseminate the results of governmental schemes — lack of transparency was one of the big issues with UPA-II. The problem begins, however, when the line between fact and propaganda is blurred.

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