Monday, November 8, 2010

Well Done Vivek Jaisimha and Venkatapathy Raju!

All praise to my good friends and old team mates, Hyderabad Ranji Trophy batsman Vivek Jaisimha and Test player Venkatapathy Raju, the batting coach and the coach of the Hyderabad Ranji team, which had the recent ignominy of being packed out for 21 against Rajasthan, for resigning from their jobs. It has been a long time since I have seen anyone resign from their job, owning moral responsibility for bad performance of a team that was compromised by faulty selection from the very beginning.

Bad and biased selection policies have always plagued Hyderabad cricket and the malaise had sunk in so deep that all Hyderabad teams had players being rotated to accommodate as many players as can be played. Performances were never the criterion as selectors threw all discretion, professional pride and ethics to the winds, and selected players as dictated by the powers that be. Most times they bartered on whom to play and whom to drop and most good players became fall guys in these power games. All selectors, coaches, managers, all plum jobs that paid, were at the mercy of the powers that be, so whoever has been in these positions and abused them, have done severe injustice to their jobs, to what was expected from them.

It pained one no end to see a whole lot of cricketers, most who played at the highest level, and who know the pain of suffering unjust selection policies, contribute to the same. Shivlal Yadav, Arshad Ayub, Venkatapathy Raju have played at the highest level, while Azeem, M.V.Sridhar, N.P. Singh are some other names that come to mind. The bone of contention for several years now has been the unprecedented favor and lenience shown towards Arjun Yadav, son of Shivlal Yadav, who has been persisted with despite a mediocre performance in over 70 odd Ranji matches. His elevation as captain raised several eyebrows - yet he was persisted with for a long time. Players like Rayudu and Suman who have shown their mettle in no uncertain terms when handled right against far superior oppositions, have almost given up the game, thrown into cricketing wilderness by the same management. And so many more would have probably given up even before they started. Today, the team is at the bottom of the table, a bunch of confused cricketers who only seem to thrive from match to match, for personal glory and an extension of their career by any means.

In the light of this, the resignations of two well known cricketers and trained coaches, owning responsibility for the poor performance comes as a nice surprise. More so since the selection was the same old controversial team all over again. Deserving youngsters were kept far away and the same old failures persisted with. Actually, the selectors should have resigned!

It would not have been noticed if the coaches had continued - it would have been written off as one off bad match as the President Arshad Ayub explained - and they would have kept their jobs and received good remuneration for it. But they did, with an express purpose of bringing the muck out of the cupboard and into the open and I truly congratulate them, Vivek especially for his articulate interviews which lay bare the system, and Venkat for supporting him thoroughly. I was fortunate to have played with these two fine players, during that historic campaign of Hyderabad in 1986-87 when we won the Ranji Trophy beating a star studded Delhi - undoubtedly Hyderabad's finest hour to date. I played two games in that season, Venkat played most save the finals, Vivek played all games and scored heavily as well. It is distressing to see at least three other players who had stellar roles to play in that campaign not batting for the cause of Hyderabad cricket now - Shivlal Yadav, Arshad Ayub and Abdul Azeem who is now the Chairman of selectors.

Vicky and Lachi, this is probably an even more significant contribution you have made for Hyderabad cricket, and none less heroic than any of your exploits on the field. I applaud and support you and I hope that your cry for instant reforms in the system is heeded immediately. The entire system must be transparent, people with integrity and knowledge must be handed the right jobs and youngsters must be left alone to focus on what they are meant to, cricket. Only then, will there be any hope for Hyderabad cricket.


Vidyuth Jaisimha said...

Good stuff Harry--The same team would have played this match against Jarkand too and we would never have got to see talented youngsters like Sandeep and Vihari play for Hyd for God only knows how many years if Vivek and Latchi had nt resigned

Harimohan said...

Yes and so much more to be done before the spirit of the game is restored here. And I am glad you are doing your bit and keeping your wards the way they should be. No wonder they are the only bunch that is performing.

Anand Lakshminarsu said...

Hyderabad ki Kasam,Nawabi tahzeeb aur lehza Kirkit mey nahi hai saab.Urdu zaban chodo Angrezi bhi nahi bolte yeh loga jo aaj kal Hyderabadi Kirkit ke Bade Logan hai..Oh bhi kya din the jub the Jai,Abbas,Mansur,Abid,Jayanti,vagaira aur raah dikathe Aibara ,Gulam vagaira.Well the root cause of evil is paise saab harami paise.
Khuda Haafiz.

Harimohan said...

Well said Anand bhai! But one can only hope things will look up again.

G said...

Mr. Harimohan, I chanced up on your blog purely by accident. A fellow team-mate fondly remembered Vivek Jaisimha's batting exploits in the Hyderabad cricket circle. This triggered my imagination, and I set out looking to gather as much information I can about Hyderabad's rich cricket culture. Your blog is a gem in that you write about 'the cricketer' as a person, life lessons, and other interesting anecdotes. The game is truly great, in that it gives us so much to cherish about.

The very best,

Harimohan said...

Thanks Gautham. It truly is a great game and I for one, have learnt much from it.

Manchi Jagadish said...

For someone who watched ML Jaisimha,MV Narsimha Rao,Vijay Paul,Jyothi Prasad in their heydays;it pained to see the depth that Hyderabad Ranji team has fallen.

Manchi Jagadish said...

Had been watching the great Hyderabad players like,ML Jaisimha,MV Narsimha Rao,Abid Ali,Vijay Paul,Mumtaz Hussain and Arshad Ayub;they were superb.The depth to which Hyderabad Team has fallen is very sad.