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  1. Indians love predictability. And no one knew that more than the great Manmohan Desai, who created a trend with a theme that was widely followed not only by him but also by other filmmakers. The basic plot is usually about a family that unfortunately becomes a victim of the bad guys. In trying to escape their misfortune, the family gets separated. The dad is either killed or framed to go to jail. The mom either suffers some sort of memory loss or disability. The kids can be separated in a variety of ways depending upon how different the filmmaker wants to be. One of the most popular ways to separate the kids was when the brothers catch a train in trying to escape the villains. On the train, the younger sibling gets thirsty, therefore the older one goes to fetch water. Eventually, he is late to catch the train. To remain predictable to the Indian audiences, the characters name would be similar too (Vijay, Shankar, Amit, Rajesh, etc.), while the bad guys would be played by the same actors from the talented pool of Amjad Khan, Kadar Khan, Prem Chopra, Ranjeet, Jeevan, Ajit, and Shakti Kapoor. If it is a big budget movie, an Amitabh or a Shashi or a Dharmendra would be beating the bad guys. If it is mid to low budget movie, a Mithun will do the duties. If the movies did not follow a similar pattern, they were not likely to do well at the box office (Naseeruddin Shah is still complaining about it). Besides movies, the other favorite pass time in the subcontinent is cricket. Given the taste of Indian audiences for what is predictable, how can the country plays its cricket be any different? The cricket team tries to follow a formula too. Much like in movies, cricket also has key characters. In movies, if a key character is killed off early, it could lose interest for many. So in cricket, the idea is to preserve wicket. To achieve that aim, the team focuses on cutting down risks which includes simply blocking balls pointless. But since the wickets are intact, it provides a sense of security to the audiences. Much like how the villains are beaten at the end of the movie, most of the action is supposed to be reserved for the end (slog overs). Most movies will also have a character that is basically good but wild, along with a character that is good and responsible. At the end of the movie, the wild character learns from its mistake to turn good and responsible. Therefore, an attacking cricketer is seen as a wild character whose end goal is to turn into a responsibile one, which from the movie analogy would equate to not killing the villains until the climax. To take the game deep, the wild character is expected to block the balls too till a certain Laxman Rekha is crossed (and he would have acted responsibly). In the film industry, popular actors who are past their prime continue to play roles that are suited for people half their age. In the cricket industry, popular cricketers continue to wear India colors until its too late. An Italy in turmoil produced Renaissance. A Switzerland in relative peace produced the cuckoo clock. India with its love for predictability leans towards Switzerland but remains in turmoil like the old Italy. Which means that India as a country or the Subcon as a region is usually not at the cutting edge of starting new trends despite the opportunities available. The love for "Predictability" also ensured that Congress stayed in power for most of India's history. Every trend or theme has a shelf life but in India, the need to adhere to the predictability factor drive things to change often when it is too late or when the options run out. In movies, it can afford to take longer as the industry plays with itself. In sports or other international competition, a country plays with other nations/cultures, who do not follow similar themes. Many may also point that what India has achieved today is only because of a selected group of enterprising individuals. Eventually, India to reach its potential would need its Renaissance, which would signal a move to be more enterprising and creative as a nation.
  2. Hi everyone! I recently was introduced to the sport of Cricket and I love it! One of my classmates showed me this wonderful sport for an assignment that we had due and since then I have been hooked! I am really hoping that you guys can teach me more about this sport so I can help spread it to others in my community that do not know much about it. Please take a look at this article that I made in regards to the upcoming Cricket World Cup, I would appreciate any criticism or comments that anyone could provide! https://www.buzzfeed.com/cricketfiend/a-look-around-the-cricket-world-cup-2019-teams-3oospjudes
  3. The first Test between India and England was a fantastic one. The game was in balance almost until the last moment and both teams had a fair chance to win. Unfortunately for India though, England just had that little bit extra in their tank to get to the finish line. The Indian problem was once again related to the batting. The bowling attack did extremely well and in spite of some uninspiring captaincy, managed to bowl the opposition out in both the innings. The batting struggled once again to stand up to the pressures of Test cricket outside sub-continent. Virat Kohli was brilliant with the bat but did not receive any support from the rest of the batting lineup. This was not a one-time occurrence, as India faced the same issue earlier this year in South Africa. A series which everyone in India believed the visitors should have won. The batting lineup has been struggling for consistency outside Asia for a long time and the first England Test was just the proof of the same. India’s last Test tour outside Asia before the South African series was in West Indies. A series again in which the batting suffered. Ravichandran Ashwin saved India from the blushes twice with two hundreds. The fact that the hosts were lacking experience helped India to crawl out of those holes they dug themselves in. The Indian team needs more than Virat to win, at least for this series. Ajinkya Rahane and Murali Vijay are probably the most disappointing of the lot. Both the above-mentioned players were part of India’s last overseas leg and scored runs everywhere. The other problems for India are KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan. Both the opening options have been struggling for form and India don’t have any replacements at the moment. The wicket-keeping spot as well needs a look in. Dinesh Karthik not only struggled with the bat, his glove work wasn’t that great either. With just a few days between the first two Tests, India cannot do anything drastic in terms of preparation but would need to somehow dig deep to see how they can turn this batting problem around. Cheteshwar Pujara might come back into the team for Lord’s and it will be interesting to see if India gambles with Rishabh Pant in place of Dinesh Karthik. The opening combination will be interesting as well as all three of them failed in the first Test, so it will be a lottery of sorts as to which combination plays in the second Test. The bowling attack looked good in both the innings. If Jasprit Bumrah is fit he will mostly replace Umesh Yadav in the line-up. The other position in question is Hardik Pandya. No one is sure what his role is in the XI. His batting doesn’t give India enough runs and his bowling is non-existent. India has the option of playing either Ravindra Jadeja or Karun Nair in his spot. India still has a great chance of winning the series and for that to happen the batsmen have to fire. Virat Kohli is the only world-class player in the side and the gulf in class showed in the first Test. The experienced players in the lineup need to step up and if that does not happen, the one man army will struggle to win consistently outside the subcontinent. India has invested lots of time on players like Cheteshwar Pujara, Lokesh Rahul, Ajinkya Rahane and Murali Vijay, and this is their chance to reprise that faith.
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