Contrary to what all the News of the World would have you believe, all is not rotten in Pakistani cricket. Despite the current scandal, there are a number of positives and a slew of good news related to the national team and the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). Before we jump to hasty conclusions and butt the captain and the chairman out of their jobs, or needlessly butt into their private lives and bank accounts, or make them the butt of nasty jokes and unsavoury puns, or gratuitously evoke derrieres in relation to their names, before all that, we must also look at the bright side of things.
Here are some examples of the spate of recent good news associated with Pakistani cricket:
In a generous gesture, our national team has decided to donate a portion of their match-fixing fees to help flood victims. This also includes spot-fixing wages. It is estimated that this money could easily rehabilitate more than 10 million people and keep them reasonably well-off for many years to come.
The team has decided to admit all past wrongdoings and repent for their sins by joining in a collective prayer for forgiveness. They’d do this in a nationally televised event led by a popular proselytiser. Advertisers will donate 0.000001% of their proceeds to hapless flood victims.
The board chairman has magnanimously agreed to resign in the wake of the current furore; he’s decided to embark on a new career as stand-up comic relief, spreading joy and laughter in the grief-stricken nation. He’s also been reputedly offered the lead role in the upcoming Punjabi action-thriller-comedy, Maula Butt.
All cricketers implicated in the current scandal, in a great show of moral uprightness, have volunteered to quit cricket on their own. They’re planning to start a cricket academy for youngsters, teaching them how to overstep bowling creases and drop sitters in subtle and unnoticeable ways.
Former captain and star cricketer Insaan Khan has been tipped to take over as the new coach-cum-chairman. It is believed that only he can bring some order and discipline to national cricket. He was last seen collecting some very heavy bats, leather whips and, uh, some balls for the national team.
Despite the shame the team has brought on us, some respected international cricketers have offered words of support and encouragement. The great Aussie captain Tricky Pointing has said that it would be unfair to ban the entire Pakistan cricket team. He went on to explain that only batsmen, bowlers and fielders should be dismissed. The 12th man can stay. The PCB has welcomed this statement.
Meanwhile the 12th man in the last test has been cleared of all wrongdoing after a gruelling nine-and-a-half-hour investigation. He was suspected of bringing the towels on field at specific times predicted by fixers.
Given that many of our cricketers are mentally challenged — one Yes-Sir Hameed is known to have the mind of a 15-year-old — the PCB has decided to fund a special educational institution for our intellectually depleted players and officials. The institution would impart basic educational skills such as speaking English and using your brains.
In a related development, the PCB’s lawyer has reiterated that all players are innocent and no court can try them as they’re all minors and/or imbeciles.
Meanwhile, the PCB has ignored strong public demand for renaming it the Pakistan Cheaters’ Board. It said it would cling to its original title. Either that or the Pakistan Corruption Board.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 19th, 2010.
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