Wednesday, January 24, 2007

arrogance shmarrogance

I am sick of people saying:

"Shoaib Akhtar is arrogant and therefore should not play."

It is idiotic. Since when did humility become a prerequisite for playing cricket, or any sport for that matter? These players are supposed to be professionals. This is their job. If Shoaib is arrogant, don't go to dinner with him, or invite him over to play with your kids. But surely you can work with him. God knows we've all worked with a few arrogant idiots from time to time.

I am not a fan of Shoaib's antics. But his 'arrogance' does tend to make him an exciting player to watch. He is a celebrity and a superstar, and every now and then he should be allowed to act like one. The way his career has been manhandled says less about him and more about the disastrous state of man management in the PCB (and in Pakistan in general, for that matter).

It is a pity that the PCB has not learned to deal with Shoaib the way the Australians managed to deal with Warne. The Aussies did so well, in fact, that a man who has been found guilty of both match-fixing and doping is still hailed as a hero around the world. There are other circumstances at play here of course (the Australian media is a tad more influential than the Pakistani media, for example) but even so, Shoaib is lucky if he gets respect from his own countrymates.

So what if he's arrogant? He's the best bowler we have (sorry Asif, but it's true). Unless I'm missing something, the team that goes out to represent Pakistan should consist of its best players, not its most humble. Otherwise we may as well just send out a bunch of 11 beard-toting, God-fearing mullahs and see how they do.

Oh, wait... we already did...

cross-posted at

No comments: