Former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi has been consistent in his condemnation of the Indian Premier League ever since it began in 2008.
To say Bedi abhors the shortest form of the game is an understatement and at times, he has stayed away from commenting on issues pertaining to Twenty20 cricket because it is not deserving of his mind space.
Yesterday, he spoke to MiD DAY on the how the game has taken a beating through the spot fixing scandal. At the same time, he is convinced cricket will survive every storm.
Excerpts from a chat:
In your opinion, what is happening to this game?
My opinion doesn’t count. Let’s talk in institutional terms. Cricket is an institution and it is being raped left, right and centre (through the spot fixing scandal).
The administrators have to clean it up…
They (administrators) will never clean it up.
How can dirty people clean the dirt? We cricketers are to be blamed for this.
Why do you say so?
Yes, because we fall prey invariably to the manipulation of business people, politicians, bureaucrats. That is how crooked climbers get on top of shoulders and get what they want – and not what cricket wants. Just look at how many politicians are heading various state associations. We don’t have to look far. You don’t need rocket science to prove anything.
And the IPL is adding to the heap of corruption…
Right from its inception, the IPL was nothing but a very corrupt seed.
Now, Lalit Modi is calling BCCI a bully. Wasn’t he exactly that?
It is the pot calling the kettle black.
What do say about the future of cricket?
Cricket’s future will always be good. We individuals may have our weak links, our weak points. Cricket does not have any weak points.
Cricket is a very powerful medium. They – all these fellows have tried to make cricket naked. But I have enormous faith in the game. I have lost faith in cricketers and administrators, but I have not lost faith in cricket. It is – and always will be – beautiful to me. I am not going to be carried away with this IPL rubbish. This is just a drama enacted in front of us. Cricket is the only sport… the only sport which reflects the times we live in.
Do you see the curtain coming down on the IPL?
The curtain should have not gone up in the first place. But let’s see… I am hopeful.