Friday, December 29, 2006

Yaeeeesh....kasam meter down ki!

If some corner of your heart still beats for Mithun and deep inside you BELIEVE that DISCO stands for Dance, Item, Singer, Chorus, O se Orchestra then look no further and go here.

Awesome reviews of cult(i) classics and an ode to Indi grindhouse cinema (whatever that means!). I am sure Harry Knolwes agrees.

Monday, December 18, 2006

England's Golden Boys

I am finally very, very relieved to see England lose the Perth test rather emphatically and the Ashes trophy go back to into the Aussie fold. There is a certain annoying quality about your average English cricket fan, cricket writer and cricket commentator that makes you take a dim view of life. A report card of the Ashes and the hype that surrounds English cricket in general.

1. The Ashes Series 2005
Not, and I repeat, not the greatest series ever played, even on DVD.

2. Andrew "Freddie" Flintoff
He is the "immense" one. Amongst all the allrounders in the world today currently nursing an ankle injury he is easily the standout star. He is big, he is Northern, he is inpirational, and currently he does not have the foggiest. After helping England regain the Ashes with some memorable performances in 2005 he helped Australia win it back in a breathtaking manner in 2006. But Freddie Flintoff is considered beyond reproach in the English team. He averages 32 with the bat and 31 with the ball. Allrounder - yes, Greatest - no.

3. Andrew Strauss
The one with the smug expression. Would have made a slightly better captain than Freddie for the Ashes. As a batsman too he is only slightly overrated.

4. Kevin Peterson
KP is the man of the moment. Aggressive, often puts foot into mouth, scores lots of runs, and has already written an autobiography after his first year in international cricket. Lots of shock value, weird hairdo, a problematic sleeve. Still scores runs though.

5. Steve Harmison,
Tall, bouncy, fast, often homesick and extremely overrated. Bowls super balls and absolute shockers with a straight face. Consistently performs below par (not sure what the par for his course is though) and is often clueless in the face of adversity. Has the goodwill of selectors, fans and journalists. He too has a problematic sleeve.

6. Michael Vaughan
The world's best, most respected and good looking non-playing English captain. He will go down in folklore as the man who got the Ashes back. It is widely believed that he has been granted diplomatic immunity. Superb batsman whenever he finds form, he has an amazing custom designed knee that he can program to fail at critical junctures. Spends most of his time in rehab and providing material for journalists and mathematicians to mull on the probability of his return into the England side for the Ashes in 2017.

7. Simon Jones,
The "greatest" bowler of reverse swing using legal means and pure skill. After the skullduggery precipitated by people like Waqar, Wasim and Co, Jones comes as a breath of fresh air. He can swing it late and at good pace and that too without the use of bottle caps. This is primarily because pakis have a ten year patent on the caps. But all this takes a lot out of him. He is destined to play only three meaningful series without injury in a career spanning 14 years. He has already played two.

8. Ashley Giles,
As fine an example of mediocrity and media hype as you can ever wish to spot this side of the atlantic. He has been very seldom known to get it right, but still continues to be Fletcher's ultimate utility cricketer. Fletcher once said that if Giles were Zimbabwean he would easily walk into any of their international elevens after the year 2004 with no questions asked.

9. English Cricket Writers
A supremely gifted lot which practises its art in publications of some repute. Their favorite two letter phrase is "greatest ever" when it comes to describing anything related to the Ashes. For them International cricket with teams from the subcontinent is an exercise against their better natures for purposes of making a pot of money. England can suck at One Day cricket, get creamed by Sri Lanka in their own backyard, and lose everything else on offer as long as they retain the ashes and they get to use words like "immense" and "greatest ever". Unfortunately for them the ashes dream is over. But the buggers are still going to call it the "greatest ever" loss and an "immense" disappointment.