Thursday, August 28, 2008

Bat tampering

Even as the media occupies itself with Mintgate, a gentle reader, Abdul Haque Mirza, makes an incisive comment on Sambit Bal’s piece on Cricinfo: License to fudge.

What is this all fuss about ball tampering? Has anybody ever taken notice of “bat tampering”. Applying oil to the blade of a bat is the oldest form of bat tampering. Then use of a dozen of grips (remember Clive Lloyd), long handles, thick blades, curvatures, making holes for free flow (remember Gavasker) – is it not bat tampering? Surely, the answer is going to be – no, no it is a ‘right’ of the batsman to use the most ‘convenient’ bat. If that is the argument, then why the same length and breadth of the bat is allowed for a 5 feet player as it is for a 7 feet player. Of course reducing of a few inches in length in former case and an increase of a few inches in later will make the bat much more ‘convenient’ for the user. If that is not allowed then the practices I have mentioned should come under ‘bat tampering’. There is no surprise that no one has ever given a thought to this because batsmen are always the ‘privileged’ class and poor bowlers are always at the receiving end.

Good shot, sir.

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