An open letter to cricket from a weary supporter

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Heading for burn out: England's cricketers.

Dear cricket,

You’re great. In fact, most times, you’re delightful. In the past two decades of our relationship, you’ve never ceased to amaze me. We’ve had some wonderful times together filled with laughter, joy and great memories. But lately, I feel like there’s something missing and I know you have felt it too. We both know it but have failed to acknowledge it. Yes, you’ve read my mind. We need to take a break from this relationship – a break that will give both of us the necessary time to honestly evaluate our future together.

It’s been a long time coming. The fact that I am writing to you instead of speaking to you in person says a lot in itself, doesn’t it? But frankly, it’s entirely your fault.

I’m tired of your possessive jealousy. You expect me to spend all my time with you. You just keep going on and on, 24/7, choking me. I can’t take it anymore. We just had the never-ending Australian summer and now, we have the Indian one too. Soon, we’ll have the English and so on and so forth. When is it all going to end? Aren’t the viewers, the fans and the cricketers allowed a break? Just look at England! The board, the administration, the players and Kevin Pietersen, they have all gone ‘barmy’. And yet, let’s see what you’ve got in store for them for the next six months.

May-June – New Zealand in England (2 Tests, 5 ODIs, 1 T20)
June-September – Australia in England (5 Tests, 5 ODIs, 1 T20)
October-November – England in Pakistan (3 Tests, 5 ODIs, 1 T20)
December-February 2016 – England in South Africa (4 Tests, 5 ODIs, 2 T20s)

Saga: Pietersen's England exit.

With the type of jam-packed calendar you’ve drawn out for England, I completely agree with Mark Butcher when he said: “Just don’t watch, hide behind the sofa.” By the time the English summer and winter ends, they won’t just be tired and worn out, they’ll be cooked. And hey, you can’t blame it on KP this time. No, the shelf-life of that excuse is over. Now, it’s entirely your fault.

You’ve become exceedingly greedy. It feels like all you care about is money nowadays. Be it the cash rich veteran IPL or the wannabes – BBL, BPL, CPL, etc – the commercial breaks are getting longer and the entertainment more substandard. I was and still am a fan of your T20 arm but not in such heavy doses. I used to admire you for your sense of confidence and self-esteem but now, you’re needy.

You rely on empty eulogies from loud, sensationalis​t commentators who don’t understand the art of subtlety. They are contractually obliged to sell the game, the brand and the entertainment. Their prejudice and unbridled exuberance about every trivial occurrence only exposes your insecurities of the fact that you’ll perhaps never be as big as your football cousin, the EPL. So yes, we need to take a strategic timeout from our relationship. And yes, it’s entirely your fault.

You used to be humble and charitable. But money, fame and power have corrupted you. Now, you’ve become an authoritarian oligopoly who treats her associates with disdain. We used to argue about issues that matter. Now, you’ve built yourself a reputation for evading them. You’ve made friends based on their lucrative benefits and shunned the more misfortunate.

Disgraced: Alan Stanford.

By integrating politics and sport, you’ve got yourself involved in numerous scandals. Meanwhile, you’ve guilefully made your purse fatter at the expense of others, rather than accepting greater responsibilities. Can you blame me for wanting a break? It’s entirely your fault.

I believe the both of us should set some ground rules for the duration of the break. What is the time-frame? Can we get involved with others? I’ve had a thing for tennis for a while and we spent some time together the other day. I hope that isn’t a problem. I’m just trying to be clear and honest with you about what our time apart is going to look like.

I’m sorry but we’re way past the honeymoon phase of our relationship when you presented your best self. So, I hope you will reflect on your recent behaviour and transgressions. Once you do, we shall debate the future of our relationship. Until then, I promise that we can still remain friends in some capacity. I sure hope that we can put aside our differences soon and continue the fruitful relationship we once had. Thank you once again for everything you have given me. You’ll always have a special place in my heart.

Yours sincerely,

A. Cricket. Lover

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