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A different take on Cricket

Considering that the mantra is cricket these days with the concluding World Cup Matches & the 51 day IPL at the anvil, It seems inappropriate if there is no post on Cricket…

Does Cricket have more value than all the glossover by the media, the brand ambasssodors, BCCI and its clout and of course the billions of people for whom cricket is religion ? Looking at it more closely, I think it does.

Cricket was earlier known as a gentleman’s game. Though it still is referred to like that sometimes, it has lost its angelic qualities in many ways. One custom that I particularly like is that the highest run taker leads the team back to the dressing room at the end of the match & all the others follow him in line.Well, since my quest is to what else cricket offers, let me get straight to the point.



 

In many ways there are many learnings that a game of cricket offers to a business scenario.

Cricket is one of the longest competing sports especially the test matches. This tests the endurance of the players to withstand the grueling conditions and strive to win. Matches are all about strategizing & execution. The selection of players for the match, role of each player, early gains strategy is scripted before the match and the on the spot changes to rival the competition’s onslaught is done during the match & quickly implemented. This indicates the adaptability of the strategy and the agility that the team needs to change to suit the market.

Teamwork without mention is the top quality that the game has to offer.No matter what singular performances lead to, the cohesiveness of the team and working together is what gives them victory. The infamous team huddles and the constant encouragement that the team members give each other during the match are some examples of how this works.

Cricket is also an example of trusting your instincts & experience. The batsman tries to read the mind of the bowler & makes his decision of the shot between the split second the ball leaves the bowler & approached the crease whereas the bowler places his fielders and tries to judge the temperament of the batsman.

Speaking about temperament, most cricket matches especially the recent world cup matches have been games of capabilities & temperament. The team that is able to keep focus & cool headed at the most tense & precarious situations wins the game. Some examples are the South African team, a highly capable team but known to be chokers.

The Capatin’s Knock is a fine parallel of the management theory Lead by Example.


More importantly the game is about passion & aggression. Let me quote some examples, Brett Lee returning to the India vs Australia QF after a deep injury, Anil Kumble playing with a broken jaw in a match against WI. Sachin’s century in 1999 right after his father’s funeral is another classic example of the passion & love for the game that the players need.

The environment present at the match venue is also akin to a business situation where the match is the market, the crowds & fans are the customers who have paid for the entertainment & win, the teams represent the oligopoly players at the time, umpires are like stock analysts with final verdicts.

No wonder they say that Cricket captains would make world’s finest CEO.. that is if they have time between playing & endorsements…