Date: April 1, 2020. Venue: Beijing. Event: Five5 World Cup final. China wrote a glorious chapter in cricket history today by becoming the world champions in cricket’s shortest version. The hosts beat the United States in the five-overs-a-side final that passed off peacefully barring a pitch invasion by pro-Tibet streakers.
Traditional cricket-playing nations skipped this inaugural event, not due to a political boycott but because their players were on duty in various Indian leagues (IDL, IEL, IFL, to name just a few). Minutes after lifting the trophy, Chinese captain Yin Yang (pictured below in 2008) was signed up by IGL (Indian Gargantuan League) for a record sum of $1 billion, much to the chagrin of Indian as well as foreign stars.
“It’s our Greatest Leap Forward,” declared Yang in Mandarin. All praise for the latest format, he called it the future of cricket. “In these hyper-fast times, Twenty20 is painfully slow and boring. Even Fifteen15 and Ten10 are not rapid enough. Five5 is the name of the game.” What about Tests and one-dayers, the endangered species that are no longer televised? “Our cash-rich board will press the ICC to finish off these monstrosities,” the all-rounder said ominously. Asked to comment on the long-standing Tibetan demand for autonomy, Yang said red-haughtily, “They must realise that only one thing can save them from the Dragon’s fury — and that’s the Dragon itself.”
Well, like it or not, the Chinese are calling the shots. It would be perilous to take them lightly, feels Sachin Tendulkar, who’s pushing 47 but is still far from retired. “Their notorious aggression makes the Aussies look like well-behaved schoolboys,” he quipped, adding that he would love to score a hundred against ‘the Sinosaurs’. The irrepressible Kapil Dev, who recently launched the unofficial Indian Senior Citizens League, is overjoyed at the turn of events. “BCCI bullies have finally met their match,” remarked the 61-year-old with a devilish glint in his eyes.