Cricket is known to be a gentleman’s game and a way of life. During the recent Pak- South African cricket matches, it was observed that the South African spectators, belonging to all races religion and consisting of women, men and children were all sitting peacefully on open lawns. They were enjoying the game and the outing had an atmosphere of a family picnic. There were ladies wearing ‘hijabs’ alongside with bikini clad girls and women, they were all sitting together calmly and quietly.

On the other hand spectators in Pakistan are seated behind iron barricades. The spectators are seen quite often creating disturbances, throwing bottles and brickbats on each other and harassing the women. South Africa is predominately inhabited by the Africans yet 80 percent of team players belong to the white race, a reflection on their policy and practice of meritocracy, the true soul of democracy and the result is outstanding performances of their team. There is also a Muslim in the team with a beard enjoying respect from everyone. The Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman is nominated by the rulers on the basis of patronage and cronyism; the only one in the world that does not follow any democracy, the result is abysmal performances. Our people should learn from the South Africans, the civilised behaviour and shun intolerance, extremism, fundamentalism, bigotry, violence etc which are destroying the basic fiber of our society.

Our batsman panicked facing the South African fast bowlers. This reminded me of the West Indian tour of Pakistan in 1950.The West Indian’s furious attack was lead by Mr Hall, the fastest bowler of the world at that time. Opener Hanif Mohammad was in his teens and Imtiaz Ahmed, without helmet and other additional safeguards, performed well, facing the fast paced attack with courage and determination. It is suggested that our batsman learn from Hanif and Imtiaz, the art of playing against fast bowlers.


Rawalpind, February 13.