Stressing that the economic growth must be gender neutral, he pointed out that the government has successfully changed the earlier narrative which credited the growth of the economy to the contribution made by men and men alone.
It was perhaps in Something Fresh that PG Wodehouse referred to some people who moved through life with their mouths held permanently open. It was very close to this sort of an existence that plenty of Indians might have found themselves in when Rohit Sharma, recently spotted in the USA, was said to be taking it all in preparation to playing next year’s Twenty20 World Cup in the land that was to co-host it with the Caribbean Islands. The surprise lay in the fact that, the Indian Premier League apart, he had not really played T20 for India after the team’s failure in the format’s previous global tournament, with selectors picking youngsters. They did so with a commitment to unearthing the colossi of the future and sketched the broad outlines of a national selection policy. It was crucial after India’s prolonged drought in terms of winning trophies in International Cricket Council competitions was thought widely to be a blot on our track record.
The attempted change promised happier results as the coach, Rahul Dravid, who’d long known virtually the entire lot of aspirants, was keen on establishing a process of nurturing youths which would yield a new crop of talent. But if Indian cricket has one kind of thinking spurring it to embark on a future-oriented course, it also has others which betray conflicting impulses. Sunil Gavaskar didn’t seem tickled pink when India’s famous senior cricketers were included alongside new boys for the tour of the West Indies, a team who were no longer in the class of the best exponents of the multi-format spectacle the game now is. He went to the extent of questioning the worth of the runs some of the big boys made.
It was perhaps important to make the point also because India had come up short in a second World Test Championship summit showdown when an entirely different result was being counted on at a time they went into it leaving out the chart-topping Ravichandran Ashwin, the sort of blunder few teams in international cricket would have committed. It leaves you wondering whether Dravid is bundled into a straitjacket even as he is required to conform to administrative convention and produce results in an environment where the bottom-line for the board stresses raking it in while the going is good, never mind the contradictions all the way across the obstacle course. It’s absurd when a former player says Hardik Pandya was more emphatically and eye-arrestingly successful with Gujarat in the IPL as Ashish Nehra, coach, was a presence in the background. But you’re obliged to wait till the cricketer himself says that a setback or two in a series isn’t really apocalyptic. The format makes for so much of the drama. But between the gaping mouth and the chin-wagging one, you don’t really anticipate which does the greater damage; yet another problem the responsibility-laden man encounters every inch of the nettlesome way