Uncle Kumble vs the Brats in Blue

Sports

Uncle Kumble vs the Brats in Blue

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

I

read Anil Kumble’s final statement after he stepped down as the coach of the Indian cricket team with a sense of what can best be described as sympathy. “Professionalism, discipline, commitment, honesty, complementary skills, and diverse views are the key traits that I bring to the table. These need to be valued for the partnership to be effective.” In that instant, I realised that Anil Kumble, who has been reduced to nothing but a relic of the ’90s, was resigning not so much over a difference in values but a yawning gap in generation.

Anil Kumble represents every pre-millennial (or Generation X as we call them), who has been made irrelevant not just by the fact that times have changed but also by the fact that they have changed so goddamn fast. No other generation has been made irrelevant so quickly and publicly than the one that peaked in the ’90s. The internet may have had a role to play, or it may just be the economic boom, but whatever the socio-cultural reasons, the fact remains that the divide between the young and every other non-millennial entity before them has never been this wide before. There was a time when generations would change every two decades. But today, every five years there’s a brand new world out there, and the ’90s Uncle is thrice removed from it.

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