27 July, 2021

Speaking Stage Fright

As an observer of cricket, Waugh shows the same depth that made him one of the finest batsmen. He will cover the World Cup exclusively for Outlook.

Speaking Stage Fright
The uncertainty surrounding Australia's and England's matches in Zimbabwe is not good for the preparation of all the three sides involved. I'm sure the players are trying to block it out and focus on their training instead. But that is easier said than done. They are stuck in the middle of the negotiations between their boards and the World Cup organisers, and the fluid situation makes it very unsettling before a tournament of this stature begins.

The current impasse is similar to the one we experienced in 1996, concerning our game in Sri Lanka. It was a difficult call, whether or not to play there. But eventually the authorities decided that safety comes first—cricket is important, but not more than life itself, our board had reasoned then. That was not an ideal situation because we lost our points for that game, and we had to ensure that we win all the rest of our matches to make it to the next stage. A similar situation will arise if England and Australia don't play their games in Zimbabwe. But talks are on and hopefully there'll be a solution soon. No team ever wants to...

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