May I through your columns, bring the attention of cricket lovers everywhere to the growing menace which is sadly affecting the hallowed game of cricket and is, I regret to say, bringing the sport into disrepute.
As cricket-lovers have been banned from attending matches in person because of the lockdown protocols, they are obliged to follow the game online, or by listening to the radio or by watching it on the television.
In order to replace the input of the crowd, the authorities have employed an army of invisible ‘Phantom Clappers’ – devotees of the game who manage to clap and cheer at every decent shot, and ooh and ahh at every dropped catch, even though they’re not there. The atmosphere created by the Phantom Clappers adds greatly to the enjoyment of the game. They are to be congratulated for their enthusiasm.
However, it is to be noted with regret that of late an unseemly element had been admitted to the non-existent enclosure of the Clappers, and the noise emanating from that quarter has become emboldened clearly as a result of the taking of too much alcohol.
In the recent first ODI in which England didn’t quite thrash India, one could clearly hear ‘singing’ in the distance, spoiling David Lloyd’s poetic description of an umpire being spotted by a pigeon.
This drunken and loutish behavior, (of the Phantom Clappers, not the pigeon), is but the tip of the iceberg, the first step on the slippery slope, and were the authorities to ignore it by burying their heads in the sand, it will only be a matter of time before anarchy prevails.
There will be riots, and the monarchy will definitely collapse this time.
It could be viewed as being on a par with the loss of the American Colonies in 1775, or the last time the English lost a battle to the French, (1066).
Please take this with the seriousness it deserves.
I remain, yours faithfully,
Bothered of Benissa.