The loss of Ashes for Australian Cricket Team coincided with the infamous ousting of Jaswant Singh from BJP, the second largest national party in India. Jaswant Singh was ousted because of writing a book about Mohammed Ali Jinnah.
The problems in Australian cricket team ( was the best cricket team in the world till Sunday) and BJP ( one of the most disciplined parties in India) are strikingly similar and shockingly it seems the problems will get worse.
As I see there are 3 major problems in both..
1. Replacement Crisis
2. Identity Crisis
3. Leadership Crisis
Australian Cricket Team had the most formidable team till 2007. The best opening pair in the world, absolutely magnificent middle order, the best wicket keeper the cricket world would ever see and the most feared bowling attack. Post Ashes 2007, the chunk of this team retired from world cricket and suddenly there were no one to replace the best or the so called relacements could not even do 10% of what the greats were doing. I did not expect Cricket Australia to do such a blunder and there were one of the better managed sports bodies in the world.
BJP on the other hand were in power till 2004 with AB Vajpayee ( one of the better leaders) and was thrown off mainly because of the self-boasting India Shining campaign and Sonia Factor. The loss coincided with physical ailment of Vajpayee, which led to the ascent of LK Advani, who was perceived as hard core Hindu Nationalist. And 2009 elections clearly depicted the mind set of Indian People, which led LK Advani contemplating retirement. This inturn led to the replacement crisis which is burning in BJP now. The moderates like Arun Jaitley, Arun Shourie and Jaswant Singh critcising the leadership and the hard boiled extremists fighting for the leadership. We even saw Arun Jaitley watching IPL in SA rather participating in the central committee meeting of the party
The Australian team has always been perceived as arrogant professionals in playing cricket lately they have become naive childish unprofessional attitude which was evident in the IndiaSeries and Ashes. They have lost the arrogance and even they looked like small children when they tried to sledge.
BJP although an offshoot of RSS was looked as a party which pushes through development rather conservative during their regime. But during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections they took a step backwards by supporting Varun Gandhi’s stance and projecting Modi as a possible PM candidate. Although Modi has developed Gujarat, he is still looked as a Hindu extremist. BJP were in utter chaos because they didn’t know what they stand for.
When a leader fails he takes the whole team down in the drain. Ricky Ponting till 2007 enjoyed the luxury of having the best team in hand and when he lost all of them his captaincy flaws were exposed. The strategic mistakes like bowling a part time spinner for England’s last pair in Cardiff and leaving out the spinner in the last test at oval were proved fatal. The bowling changes, team selections and fielding setups were awful which eventually led to their loss. I think it’s time to bring some young captain like Michael Clarke like what South Africa did a few years back. Although initially Graeme Smith lost string of matches, the team he has built looks like the Steve Waugh’s Australia in the making
BJP on the other hand were confused in their leadership projections during the 2009 elections. Even Advani’s comments during 26/11 crisis, personal attacks on Sonia and Manmohan left a bad taste. BJP never projected a single PM candidate and it proved fatal. Congress had the same problem after 1998. Sonia Gandhi taking the leadership, making Manmohan as PM ( thanks to APJ), infusing the youth in to the party, taking the elections with a single agenda of development – I think dynasty politics has helped both the party and the country.
Both Australia and BJP need to find a young leader who can put together the team back in to track. It will take a lot of failures, trial and errors but sticking to the old leadership will prove the ultimate decline of both. Australia should come back because they will provide the much needed spectacularity to cricket. BJP should come back in order to shun the rise of regional parties and communist parties, who are against the development of India.
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