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Telford Vice: A fond farewell to the IPL

May 26th, 2009 by telford vice in IPL, South Africa

And so the 2009 edition of the Incredible Pyrotechnic Loudness (IPL) has boomed and banged its last. Like some fabulously bejeweled courtesan, it waved its goodbye with a shimmer and a twinkle at the Wanderers on Sunday.

It went not at all quietly into that good night after the Deccan Chargers beat the Bangalore Royal Challengers in a final which ended in a close finish that was typical of the close finishes we had seen for much of the tournament. Fireworks leapt many metres into the black, black sky, and painted rainbows the like of which we shall be lucky to see again. Down on the field, fire dancers made their fantastic flames fly in formation. One of them was a man who had been arrested for streaking at the very same ground not long ago. Heath (not his real name) is a good bloke, actually.

Akon mimed gormlessly to some of the canned noise his producers try to disguise as music, and Eddy Grant belted out some of the real stuff with gusto. “Gimme Hope Jo’anna” – the anti-Apartheid anthem that enthralled white South Africans in the 1980s until they worked out what it was about – roared into the night like a volley of audio fireworks.

After 59 matches, most of them much more watchable than not, a whirl of marketing and Lalit Modi, bless him, beaming from every available vantage point, the IPL was finally over and the South African off-season could finally start. There had been so much to absorb, enjoy and learn in the ensuing five weeks, and for players, administrators, spectators and the media alike.

We know, for instance, that the IPL is not the wholly Indian tournament it was previously considered to be. It has an international future, and any cricket-minded country out there should try it at least once. We also know that not all Australians are arrogant bastards, especially when they are not packed together in their national team. And we know that there can be no future for that species of sporting dinosaur we call the one-day international.

South African cricket is a different, better place for the IPL’s coming. Some may feel it is an even better place for its going. It’s hard not to suggest they should leave, too.

Telford Vice is a freelance cricket writer in South Africa who writes regularly for The Wisden Cricketer

Posted in IPL, South Africa | 1 Comment »

One Response to “Telford Vice: A fond farewell to the IPL”

  1.   Has Twenty20 jumped the shark? « says:

    [...] 26, 2009 by A P Webster Just as Twenty20 cricket seems to be taking over, with the IPL looking to expand, Gayle’s recent comments and the upcoming World Twenty20, there are [...]

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