As any HG Wells fan knows, one of the big advantages of being invisible is that no one knows when you're coming or going. In the latest episode of the curious case of Sourav Ganguly, not visible in any cricket field for a while now, we don't know whether he's coming or going. His departure from international cricket may have coincided with the first real rumblings of regime change in his home state of West Bengal. But what precipitated matters was his exclusion from any team — never mind the Kolkata Knight Riders — in the forthcoming edition of the Indian Premier League. And now comes the news of Ganguly himself stating that he's retired from cricket, followed by what the hit-wicketing media deem as a 'denial' to the earlier 'announcement'. If Dada has indeed hung up his boots, it could mark the end of a chapter in cricket — and, for his legions of Bengali fans, the end of cricket.
But did he really make such an announcement at all? Even before his 'retraction', the Ponce of Kolkata had clearly stated that he doesn't "see any point in playing competitive cricket again". Pointlessness, some may argue, is besides the point when announcing one's discontinuation or otherwise of a job. As he stated with great theological dexterity a few hours after making his initial comment, Ganguly, if he gets "an opportunity to play IPL", will continue to "play domestic cricket to stay fit". Something that may, now come to think of it, apply to Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and even the old blighter Bishan Singh Bedi.
Ganguly, who knows his shirt on from his shirt off, has now firmly tapped the ball in the court (pardon the mixed sports metaphor) of any selectors out there. If they still can't get what Ganguly's trying to say (on the lines of "I won't call you, you'll have to call me"), we're afraid we can't protect these vulnerable but wise selectors out there.