Australian cricket is a bastion of brilliance. It has unfolded one great legend after another. There are the likes of the Waugh brothers and Shane Warne as also the legendary Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist- players that command, to this day, well after their retirement, as much regard as love!
But there was also a certain Mark Taylor- the captain! The cool-headed gum chewing batter who proudly wore the Baggy green on his head with a sense of calmness; he was the glue that got everyone together!
As a batsman, he led from the front with the bat, ever conscious about upholding the dignity of excellence that is Australian cricket. What could be a better example of talking about Mark Taylor’s affection for Australian cricket that when came the opportunity to surpass none other than the great Sir Donald Bradman, he decided to stop there and not score a single run (this was against Pakistan in Pakistan). And on matters related to cricket, Mark Taylor’s been a voice of reason and passion.
A fine commentator, his quips and logics are as fine as his sense of timing even he dived wide in the slip cauldron to take those blinders!
He didn’t hold himself back of late when he expressed sheer surprise about the participation of a particular player from the current Australian contingent. So the question is- who was Mark Taylor talking about why has the participation of this particular player taken the former left-hander batsman by sheer surprise?
Here is what Mark Taylor happened to say on a certain Steve Smith, widely recognised as one of the current generation’s batting greats:
Steve Smith was an interesting one because his contract was about Australian dollars 350,000 (INR 2.2 crore), which is not to be sneezed at but for a guy like Steve Smith, it’s not as big a contract as it probably should have been. I was surprised he decided to go.”
But the point here is that not only has Steve Smith’s participation in the current IPL edition surprised Mark Taylor, he was also taken a bit aback by the others. So what was said there?
“I was a little surprised that so many of the Australians went over there. If you’re Pat Cummins, he’s on something around [INR 15.5 crore], so that’s very hard to knock back for six weeks of playing cricket.”
Speaking of the ongoing edition, on May 3, 2021 there was to have been a match between the Royal Challengers of Bangalore, led by Virat Kohli and the Kolkata Knight Riders, led by Eoin Morgan.
But as it turned out, due to the ongoing COVID crisis in the city of Ahmedabad, wherein it also turned out that a few players from the KKR contingent turned positive, the match has been rescheduled.
It’s been said that this game, called off on Monday, shall now be rescheduled. At the same time, there are various publications in India that are of the view that the IPL should be cancelled and that the main priority at this point in time should be what the country is truly facing- a national health crisis!
But the key question that one will have to answer is whether cricket is important and quite manageable at this time or is it that other things must take the seat of priority!
Though, that is something sadly the fans cannot answer.