Why do top sportsmen cite not thinking too much as the reason for success? And just how much is too much? The Hindu explored the struggle between the mind and the body on Wednesday (May 17).
‘Not thinking’, though, was what went wrong for Kolkata Knight Riders in their last match against Mumbai Indians. We sent messages to the batsmen twice that there was no need to accelerate, lamented Gautam Gambhir, the captain, before urging his side to use the loss as a catalyst.
Elsewhere, a look at why the fears of a strike in Australia are unfounded, how Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan served cricket, and England’s IPL trio put their feet up, for a while at least.
Cricket’s mind-body problem — and its resolution (The Hindu)
Rishabh Pant’s advice to Sanju Samson during a run chase in the IPL highlights sport’s mind-body problem. “He told me,” said Samson after the two youngsters had taken the Delhi Daredevils to a thrilling win, ‘don’t think too much, just keep hitting.’”
“Cricket is a game played in the mind”, goes the cliché. True, but can we ignore the body? Over-thinking leads to paralysis by analysis; emptying the mind of all thought is neither possible nor desirable. Top players throw a bridge across these extremes.
Sunrisers Hyderabad are a great deal more than David Warner (Hindustan Times)
Back in 2011 I remember meeting the great Brian Lara at the Heathrow Airport. We had just arrived for a full-fledged tour of England. I am an introvert but thought this was a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity to get some nuggets from the champion batsman. Pleasantries exchanged, I came into my own. I am not sure if two right-handers do like that, but I’ve often noticed that two lefties connect like high-tension wires. A bit like two Indians meeting on the streets of Boston, absolute strangers but bursting at the seams, keen to share a lot. I asked Lara about stance, high backlift, playing spin, and a lot more. But the best advice he gave me went like this, “Gautam, remember one thing, there are more bad days than good in cricket and that will never change.”
BCCI officials may see hefty cut in foreign tour allowance (Times of India)
The Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) office-bearers and committee heads, who draw around $750 per day as daily allowance (DA) on foreign tours, may see a massive cut in their allowance money on official duty abroad. Top sources said a discussion to reduce the DA of board officials has already begun and the cut could be quite substantial.
Misbah and Younis did more than serve Pakistan – they served cricket (The Guardian)
Of course they finished together. Younis and Misbah were one of the great partnerships. They started late, because Misbah became a regular member of the team only in 2009 when he was 34 but still scored more runs together than any other pair of Pakistan batsmen. In the long history of Test cricket, only two pairs scored more runs in partnership at a higher average. Jack Hobbs and Herbert Sutcliffe were one, Justin Langer and Ricky Ponting the other. Then it is Misbah and Younis, 3,213 altogether, at 68.36. After Allah, his wife and his children, Younis was the one Misbah wanted to thank in his farewell speech. “It was a very fine journey with him in the middle,” he said. “My name will come with his and be remembered in history.”
An Indian Premier League XI to take on the Men in Blue (Yahoo Cricket)
The selectors, however, resisted the temptation to pick a 50-over squad based on a 20-over tournament, opting instead to go for stability and continuity. There are question marks over the form of some of India’s finest, but it would be a stretch to see any of these established players being left out for a major global tournament in favour of relatively untested youngsters. What would have been interesting, however, is pitting the Indian team against a playing eleven comprising solely of Indian cricketers who caught the eye in the IPL and yet did not make it to the national team.
Money talks (Mirror)
The Committee of Administrators (COA) has asked Anil Kumble to present his plan for the new wage structure and central contracts for players and support staff of the Indian team. The meeting will be held on the sidelines of the Indian Premier League (IPL) final in Hyderabad on May 21. Concurrently, the Vinod Rai-led COA has also called Virat Kohli for discussion and most probably will meet India’s captain that day. The managers of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) are still working on the schedule of the coach and the captain. Almost certainly, the meetings will happen separately, rather than together.
Cricket strike? Most likely it will end in a draw (Sydney Morning Herald)
The Australian players won’t strike, nor will be they be laid off. It’s just that there is a certain amount of posturing each side has to work through in negotiations on a pay deal. Sometimes it is more shrill than others. This time, it is particularly strident, because the disagreement is about not just a quantum of money, but the principle under which is it is distributed, and because the cricket landscape is changing rapidly anyway, leading each side to believe that the time to act is now.
Australian cricketers to do ‘what it takes’ to maintain revenue-sharing, says Matthew Wade (Sydney Morning Herald)
“Hopefully it gets resolved, we don’t want to be unemployed for a period of time,” wicketkeeper Matthew Wade told radio station SEN. “But if it gets there we’ll have to do what it takes. We’ll fall into line with what the big dogs do. The senior players will kind of direct us on which way to go.”
Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler will be cut some slack during England’s training camp in Spain this week after they return from the Indian Premier League having completed a gruelling winter in which they spent five months out of seven away from home. Eoin Morgan’s squad travel to the Desert Springs in Almería on Tuesday to work on fitness, fielding and tactics before the three-match series with South Africa that begins next week and acts as a warm-up for the Champions Trophy from 1 June.
One giant leap for women’s cricket (New Zealand Herald)
Turn left rather than right. That move marks one small step for the White Ferns, but one giant leap for cricket-kind when the side flies to the World Cup in England next month. They will travel business class to the tournament (or anywhere) for the first time courtesy of the International Cricket Council; a right their male counterparts have accepted as the status quo for years. Compare that to last year’s World T20 in India. The men travelled up front but the women were sent to economy.
Youth injured in cricket match dies (The Hindu)
Mohammed Abdul Wajid, who sustained injury after being hit with a bat by a youngster playing cricket at Idgah ground in Mir Alam tank in Bahadurpura two days ago, died on Tuesday while undergoing treatment at a private hospital.