On Wednesday, Harsha Bhogle spoke about ‘The Future of Cricket’ at Williamson Magor Hall at the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The event was presented by Black Dog, in association with The Telegraph and powered by Eden City.
Looking dapper in a purple shirt and beige blazer, Harsha talked about the state of turmoil that cricket is in at the moment. He went on to discuss the different forms of cricket, their limitations and impact on each other. Also, he pointed out how Test cricket should be financially viable for its sustenance, how spinners are slowly going out of the game and what India should do to revive Test cricket.
After taking questions from the cricket-loving audience, Harsha Bhogle spoke to t2 on his IPL champions!
Gautam Gambhir (KKR).
Jacques Kallis (KKR).
Dale Steyn of Deccan Chargers (pace) and Sunil Narine of KKR (spin).
Batsman: Mr Dependable?
Ajinkya Rahane (Rajasthan Royals)
Batsman: Mr Destructive?
We can’t look beyond Chris Gayle (RCB), can we? (Smiles)
This is a tough one because I enjoyed watching AB de Villiers (RCB), Faf du Plessis (Chennai Super Kings). But for being dramatic I will go with Steve Smith (Pune Warriors India).
Best new player?
Steve Smith of Australia (Pune Warriors India) and among Indian players I like the look of Mandeep Singh (Kings XI Punjab). I absolutely love the look of Umesh Yadav (Delhi Daredevils), though he is not a ‘young’ player as he has played before. But among what we have seen so far, it will be Parvinder Awana (Kings XI Punjab) and Mandeep Singh.
Dharamshala Cricket Stadium was the most picturesque. But other than that, my favourite cricket venue has always been Bangalore.
Both Simon Taufel and Aleem Dar. If I have to choose one, I will go with Aleem Dar.
Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings had the best-balanced teams. But the best-selected team was Kolkata Knight Riders. A lot of thought went behind the KKR team.
Hmmm…. So many of them (pause). I think the Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Deccan Chargers match. To take 23 runs off Dale Steyn’s over in that situation was so dramatic! The final match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Chennai Super Kings was also good, it was very close. But I will go with the RCB vs DC match.
Best on-field action — Shah Rukh Khan’s cartwheel or Sourav Ganguly’s hair-raising run?
Sourav’s was good fun. Yuvi tweeted about it, lots of people made fun of him but Sourav did not sulk, for once. Afterwards he was making fun about it and that’s what I liked a lot. To me, the most entertaining moment was the combination catch that Johan Botha and Ajinkya Rahane took (for Rajasthan Royals vs Pune Warriors India).
Most mischievous commentator?
Danny Morrison (laughs).
Best TV presenter?
If I say I am not my favourite TV presenter then I am an idiot, right (laughs)? But then, I can say who are the people I like. I like Alan Wilkins but now don’t ask me why not Sameer Kochhar, why not Gaurav Kapoor? Who is better than who is best left alone.
Best expert in the studio?
I will just pass this one. I don’t want to get into this one (smiles).