Cricket commentary on Radio & TV, some quotes!

I have been following cricket since time immemorial, or so it appears to me. For someone who started with reading the sports page of “The Hindu” newspaper, to listening to the radio commentary on All India Radio and BBC, the first “huge upgrade” was getting to watch live on Doordarshan, India’s first TV channel. It was really fascinating, in spite of the fact that there was only one camera on the grounds as a result which, in one over you view the batsman facing the ball and in the next you view the bowler delivering the ball. The power cuts, the broken satellite signal with “Sorry for the Interruption” or “Rukavat ke liye khed hai” added a lot of spice (read frustration) to the situation! But hey, you get to watch it live, isn’t that enough — so stop complaining, will you. Commentary used to alternate in English and Hindi with Narottam Puri and Sushil Joshi being the primary commentators (after landing in US, I realized that they are called “play callers” here!).

The broadcasts from Australia’s Channel 9 brought about a big change. Multiple camera angles, former players as commentators, major sponsors. Great things followed. Rupert Murdoch started STAR TV. Retired Indian cricketers started doing commentary with Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri being very prominent. The arrival of Harsha Bhogle, Henry Blofeld and his penchant of ear rings, the humor of Geoffrey Boycott, live transmission of Sharjah cricket, all brought us a lot of joy. Of course, now a days, with the TV taking over cricket, it’s a whole different story. We have tons of channels, commentators, in-studio analysis and discussions – hard to choose, isn’t it! Btw, what’s with this guy Navjot Sidhu! Geez!

Over the years, some quotes by the commentators and some things I read in the newspapers have been etched in my memory forever. Here is a short collection, not in any particular order. Some good, some hilarious, some ridiculous – I’ll let you decide what’s what! 🙂

Out hone ki koshish.. aur isee ke saath Ravi Shastri out!” – Sushil Joshi

Beautiful shot, brilliant stop, pickup, and throw — all this is happening at the SCG” – Ian Chappell

We didn’t bat well, didn’t field well, and didn’t bowl well. Other than that, we did OK” – Mohd Azharuddin, after a dismal performance against England.

I just want to get into the middle and get the right sort of runs” – Robin Smith, after suffering from stomach problems during a tour of India

Statistics are like bikinis… what they reveal is suggestive.. what they hide is essential” – Navjot Sidhu

Don’t bowl him bad balls. He hits the good ones for fours” – Michael Kasprowicz on Sachin Tendulkar.

The Queen’s Park Oval, exactly as the name suggests, absolutely round” – Tony Cozier

Every Lankan cricketer who comes up to the stage calls his teammates as ‘boys’ – I am confused, I thought only captains referred that way. Looks like everyone is a captain there” – Unknown, after the 1996 Sri Lanka world cup victory

The slow-motion replay doesn’t show how fast the ball was really travelling” – Richie Benaud

On the off-side, first there is God, and then there is Ganguly” – Rahul Dravid on Sourav Ganguly, whose off-side play is a treat to watch.

Ballebaaj ne stroke ke liye jagah banaaya aur gend ko wicketkeeper ke paas jaane diya” — Kapil Dev, during his short stint as a commentator.

If you guys remember any other funny or great quotes, please mention them in the comments. I’ll post a consolidated collection along with submitter’s name.


About Bharath

Random dude from a small town called Anantapur in India.
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One Response to Cricket commentary on Radio & TV, some quotes!

  1. Sharan says:

    Awwww… good old days of Indian cricket where non-cricketers were commentators. Sushil Doshi was hilarious.

    Here are two I can remember (well partially)

    Hiran ki tahara doudta hua ( Ran like a deer to save a boundary – when referring to a fielder)
    Machli ki tahara doude (Ran like a fish – batsmen when they stole a single)

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