The End of Dadaism

November 09, 2008

Leave it to Sourav Ganguly to go out in a perplexing blaze of nothingness, with a first-ball duck at Nagpur, just as he entered with a perplexing blaze of brilliance, with an opening-innings century at Lords nearly a dozen years ago. Always a bit of drama with Sourav. Okay, more than a bit.

Sourav Ganguly Retires

Unless you are a Bengali — in which case chauvinism blinds you no less in matters of cricket than in any other aspect of life — Ganguly made life just a little uncomfortable for his would-be admirers. You wanted to give him your unconditional support; but somehow, he never let you. You couldn't help but admire his ballsy incisiveness as India's captain, his often magnificent stroke play (as Rahul Dravid famously said, "On the off-side, there's God, then there's Ganguly."), and his uncommonly articulate post-match interviews. And yet his play never ceased to be infuriatingly selfish, sloppy, and cynical. I have not looked at the statistics, so this is entirely impressionistic, but I think one would be hard-pressed to name a player who got more of his teammates run-out unnecessarily, hit more pointless centuries in losing causes and inevitably drawn tests, or was dismissed so often within a ball after reaching his personal milestone du jour.

His nickname was "Dada", from the Bengali for "older brother". Yet the derivation could just as easily come from the contrarian art movement of the early twentieth century, given the maddening ambiguity of his prolific, yet profligate career.

My voice was among those who called for his retirement during the dark days of 2005. I was also among those delighted with the success of his 2006-2008 comeback. It would have been wonderful to have seen him go out as he'd come in, with a blaze of glory. But his golden duck coda seemed well-deserved instant-karma for a cricketer who so often seemed to play only for himself.

Mark Jacobs is a freelance volunteer, working on service projects in various places around the world. He lives half of each year in India and writes at www.memestream.org.
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The End of Dadaism


Author: mbjesq


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November 9, 2008
01:26 PM


He plays for himself!!! Its really ridiculous that you think that of him.. he is a guy who sacrificed the opener slot for team's sake... He took criticism and showed the team how to come out mentally strong!!!

Well even Bradman got a Golden duck in his last innings... So mayb u think that Bradman had an average of 99.94 for self cause...

November 9, 2008
02:13 PM


must confess you had me;)

(i was reading short's dada & surrealism and was looking intently at Why not sneeze Rrose Selavy, 1921 as sometimes one is wont to do)

then drifted to this post and....


as for ganguly
and kumble

and dravid
and tendulkar

the tide has come
...matter of time

November 9, 2008
02:45 PM


good one! in addition to "dadaism" the intellectual movement, and "dada" for elder brother - "dada" as in bully too...that does fit his profile though!

November 9, 2008
03:02 PM

Nice addition, Sense!

Temp: Way to elevate the game!

November 9, 2008
04:34 PM


shit, a major typo! before everyone "bullys"
me, "dadagiri", "dadaism", I did intend to type that the bully profile does NOT fit ganguly!!

November 9, 2008
08:09 PM

It is interesting that both terms 'Dada' and 'Bhai' that are associated with 'brother' have been associated with heavy-handed bullies. Just as Godly Father as in Godfather is associated with clanish mafia. Kaka which means uncle is associated with poop which is errily closer to pop too, just like dad is to dead and mommy is to mummy.

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