On cricketers and politicians – by Lakshman Kadirgamar

On cricketers and politicians
By  Lakshman Kadirgamar – August 25, 2005

Lakshman Kadirgamar

Dilmah Cricket Network today publishes a memorable after-dinner speech made by the late Sri Lanka Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar during a function held with the Sri Lanka cricketers after their knockout from the Champions Trophy in September 2004. 

Captain Atapattu and members of the Sri Lankan team;
Members of the Sri Lankan community;
Friends of Sri Lanka;
Ladies and Gentlemen.

Some historians say, I think un cha ritably, that cricket is really a diabolical political strategy, disguised as a game, in fact a substitute for war, invented by the ingenious British to confuse the natives by encouraging them to fight each other instead of their imperial rulers.

The world is divided into two camps – those who revel in the intricacies of cricket and those who are totally baffled by it, who cannot figure out why a group of energetic young men should spend days, often in the hot sun or bitter cold, cha sing a round object across an open field, hitting it from time to time with a stick – all to the rapturous applause of thousands, now millions, of ecstatic spectators across the world.

The game has developed a mystical language of its own that further bewilders those who are already befuddled by its complexities.

In the course of my travels, I have a hard time explaining to the non-cricketing world in America, China, Europe and Russia that a googly is not an Indian sweetmeat; t hat a square cut is not a choice selection of prime beef; t hat a cover drive is not a secluded part of the garden; t hat a bouncer is not a muscular janitor at a night club, t hat a yorker is not some exotic cocktail mixed in Yorkshire ; t hat a leg-break is not a sinister manoeuvre designed to cripple your opponent’s limbs below the waist. [Read more]

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  • Gautam Seal  On 01/13/2015 at 11:18 am

    One of the finest lectures I have gone through.

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