Good the Aussies are out. Their winning streak was getting way too boring. Anyways, Australia’s domestic politics is not much improved under Julia Gillard, who’s nearly as rightwing in many respects as John Howard, though the Kevin Rudd interregnum had promised to put some pep into it. So red light for the baggy green caps is correcto.
A pity the West Indies couldn’t make it. The multi-national team from the Caribbean countries could have used the boost a Cricket World Cup victory would’ve given their multi-racial societies. And inspired a new stream of Calypso poetry.
So South Africa won’t be taking home the cup. That’s fine. A victory might’ve been used by Jacob “Shower-After-Rape” Zuma for his own ends. Nothing against the Proteas, mind you. I’d have been all for winning it for Nelson Mandela. The only problem is that while saying bring the cricket trophy back for Madiba, what “Rape’n’Shower” Zuma was really saying was, bring it back for me, me, me. Take a hike, Jacob. And then shower.
England didn’t need a win. The 2012 London Oly’ll give them all the lift they need and David Cameron, along with Sarko next door in France is hoping the Libya operations’ll yield him PR mileage. So take a rest, lads.
Of the last four, who do I want to see win? First, who do I NOT want?
India. What an obscene, over-the-top, ugly, self-serving, noisy gaggle of players, punters, politicians, fans, television commentators, jingoist journalists, advertisers, corporate piggy-backers and the Bunch of Corrupt Crooks that is the unregulated BCCI. Victory for this lot would lead to hideous ads on TV, “newspapers”, hoardings, the Internet, everywhere, everywhere – and for months and years – selling everything from toothbrush and chocolates to their own mothers. So please, cricket gods, spare us the torture. Bad enough India’re in the semis.
Now Sri Lanka had for long been my faves. I’m a South Indian, see, and geographically, am closer to the coconut-consuming cousins on the island than to those Northies who can’t even say “vada-saambaar” properly: “Oy, baat suno, saamburr-bada lao”. Sheesh! When I first went to live in New Delhi, me a good Bangalorean, was clubbed with “Madrasees”. No, no, keep your Sehwags, Dhonis and numerous Singhs, I root for er… numerous Singhes from Raavana land. That was my stand. Speaking of Raavana, now that Sri Lanka’s ditched democracy, they lost my backing: Any win’ll be seized on by brothers Rajapakse – Mahinda, Gotabhaya, Basil and Chamal – to further cement their dastardly dictatorship.
Pakistan. Don’t mind them winning at all, really. Asif “10%” Zardari and other politicians are so discredited in the Pakistani people’s eyes that even a 10-wicket or 200-run humiliation of India won’t translate into lift for that lot. The Army? They can try but I doubt the people’ll associate exploits on the pitch with those masters of the putsch. Actually the one big loser if Pakistan win’ll be the Taliban. Imagine the scenes on the streets of Pakistan after a World Cup victory! The dancing, the music, the ecstasy! Just the ticket to tell the sport-hating (omni-hating really) Taliban where to stick it.
New Zealand. Now, they can put a victory to good use and their politicians are reasonably clean. Can’t exploit a win for narrow ends. In fact, who outside Wellington has a clue or should I say Key as to which John’s their Prime Minister now? One of the least corrupt countries, according to Transparency International. Post-Christchurch quake, they need a boost and a win’ll give them a big one. And I love the Kiwi accent (along with the South African, Caribbean and the Northern Irish). Go to lads, run rings around your opponents and give a Lord of the Rings-like boost to your economy. And you might well be invited to tea and perhaps even samosas with an Indian looking gent, anyway: Governor-General Anand Satyanand.