By Martin D’Souza | Opening Doorz Editorial | November 17, 2023 In the wacky world of cricket and television, Mandira Bedi stood as the trailblazer, the noodle-strap-clad pioneer who dared to venture into […]
By Martin D’Souza | Opening Doorz Editorial | November 17, 2023
In the wacky world of cricket and television, Mandira Bedi stood as the trailblazer, the noodle-strap-clad pioneer who dared to venture into the hallowed realm of the 2003 Cricket World Cup. Little did she know that she would become the muse for future cricket anchors and the cause of sleepless nights for cricketers who found her questions as perplexing as a googly from Shane Warne.
Back then, Mandira was a lone wolf in a den of cricketing lions, armed with her charm and noodle straps that gained fame faster than a Adam Gilchrist century. Cricketers, accustomed to questions about cover drives and googlies, found themselves facing the ultimate bouncer—Mandira’s quirky queries. Little did they realize that Sony Television had given her the mission to decode cricket for the common man, a task that, in their eyes, bordered on the absurd.
Mandira Bedi, the First Lady of Cricket World Cup
The cricket fraternity, predominantly a boys’ club, raised their eyebrows at the audacity of a lady entering their sacred domain. They wondered, “What does she know about yorkers and LBWs?” Unbeknownst to them, Mandira was on a mission to bridge the gap between cricketing jargon and the common man’s understanding, armed with nothing but a stylish wardrobe and a knack for simplifying the complexities of the game.
Fast forward to today, and the cricket coverage on Star Sports resembles a sitcom, with anchors delving into individual players’ lives more than the team dynamics. It’s a carnival of endless banter, more slaps than a saas-bahu sitcom on loop. Mandira Bedi, the woman who started it all, must be looking at the present state of cricket coverage with a mix of amusement and bewilderment.
Mandira Bedi, a Symbol of Revolution
Mandira, once the subject of ridicule, now stands as a symbol of revolution, the woman who paved the way for a multitude of female anchors to grace the cricketing arena. The cricketers who once scoffed at her questions are now her pals, united by the common love for the game they all underestimated her for understanding.
In a twist of fate, Mandira Bedi’s journey comes full circle as India and Australia face off in the final, two decades after she first donned the anchor’s hat. As the final unfolds, one can imagine Mandira Bedi, with her trademark bindi and noodle straps, raising a metaphorical toast to the cricketing revolution she kick-started. Perhaps she’s chuckling at the irony of it all, thinking, “Who would’ve thought that the girl with noodle straps would change the face of cricket on television?”
Here’s to Mandira Bedi, the unsung hero of cricket coverage, the woman who turned noodle straps into a fashion statement and transformed cricket from a gentleman’s game to a game for everyone—quirks, noodle straps, and all.
David Beckham makes Bollywood go Chaiyya Chaiyya at Wankhede
David Beckham, the iconic soccer star, found himself on a rather sticky wicket at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, attempting to make sense of a cricket match that stretched longer than his entire playlist of Spice Girls hits.
Accustomed to the swift drama of 90-minute soccer matches, David Beckham was seen scratching his head as the first half of the India vs New Zealand semi-final cricket match concluded. Unbeknownst to him, cricket’s idea of a halftime break involved sipping chai, strategizing for hours, and possibly catching a quick nap.
The confusion on Beckham’s face reached its peak when he discovered that one-day cricket was a commitment of over 7.5 hours. No wonder he was conspicuously missing after the first half—probably off chasing his favorite Golden Balls rather than attempting to comprehend the Duckworth-Lewis method.
England played cricket in Lagaan!
In a desperate attempt to make sense of cricket’s intricacies, Beckham was overheard muttering, “In my day, we settled things with penalty shootouts, not a never-ending series of overs!” Reminiscing about England’s cricketing glory, he quipped, “Sure, the English play cricket, but that was in Aamir Khan’s Lagaan. We didn’t sign up for these marathon innings back in London.”
When informed that Ben Stokes, a fellow Englishman, was part of the cricketing world, Beckham scoffed, “Stokes might be from England, but who in England actually watches cricket? It’s like saying I watch soccer in my spare time.”
As the match wore on, Beckham found himself sandwiched between various Bollywood celebrities, each taking turns sitting beside him. The constant rotation left him wondering if he was stuck in a wax museum, his expressions meticulously crafted for each photo-op.
Sitting through the relentless cricketing action with Bollywood A-listers seemed to test Beckham’s patience. He was overheard whispering to his manager, “I’ve faced Ronaldo’s free kicks, but this is a whole new level of endurance.” He was also overhead saying, “Thank God no one asked me do do the Island in the Stream dance. Imagine, the whole Wankhede doing that. It would have overshadowed Virat Kohli’s 50th One-Day ton.”
By the time England’s 2019 World Cup win was brought up, Beckham rolled his eyes and remarked, “That victory was like my free kicks—a freak calculation. At least in soccer, we have the decency to wrap things up in regulation time.”
[Moody Marty: Sometimes funny, sometimes informative, always downright forthright!]
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