Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Hanging my head in shame


Which fool wrote these words on Facebook a little over a year ago, when Brendon McCullum had just ousted Ross Taylor as boss of the Black Caps? 

 It is just that Brendon McCullum should acquire the captaincy of the New Zealand cricket team. McCullum exemplifies the values and aesthetics of 21st century cricket: he's loudmouthed, self-promoting, money-conscious, flamboyant at the wicket, capable of passages of spectacular batsmanship, and utterly incapable of the gritty, sometimes dour, characterful play for which his distinguished twentieth century preedecessors in the New Zealand team were famous. 
 
If players like John Reid and Bert Sutcliffe were made for the three month tour and the five day test, then McCullum is built for the week-long 20-20 tournament, where a few massive sixes hit against Bangladesh or Kenya on a flat track will win applause, and speedy, sloppy dismissals against the attacks of top nations like South Africa and England can quickly be forgotten. It is not surprising that McCullum has confessed to have no interest in, and little knowledge of, the history of cricket: his attitude and his style of play are the negation of that history.

Ouch. It was me. Sorry, Brendon. Your triple century at the Basin Reserve was as dourly determined as any epic innings by Turner or Wright. In a curiously Freudian analysis of McCullum's series-winning knock, Abishek Purohit argues that the famously aggressive batsman has 'triumphed over' his 'essence'. Just as Freud argued, in that famously dour little book Civilisation and its Discontents, that repression was essential to the construction of large-scale societies, so Purohit suggests that McCullum has had to restrain his cricketing id to build a large innings:
 
He has battled what he has stood for, and what the world has known him for. He has overcome his own essence...What it must have cost the man we will never be able to tell. For how many of us can say we have militated against our own nature and succeeded? 
 
McCullum's triple century was so impressive that Purohit's solemnities seem profound, rather than pretentious. Now I'm going away to hang my head in shame.

[Posted by Scott Hamilton] 
 
 

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

samoas da mother land of all polynesia.were da originals.use wer just the useless tribes dat got kicked off our beautiful island.lol.den use comeback and tried to rule it.den got fucked up by 2 brothers.so much for champions.lol.2 brothers vs a tongan army.lol.tongan army lost.hahaha.
and to this day canr even get a descent boxer or make a rugby quarter final.must be depressing.yous must be so jealous of samoa.love you tonga.mwahh

12:26 am  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home