Desperate to restore its battered image, the UPA government held a cricket match between Team Manmohan and Team No-Man, here on Sunday afternoon. Twelve veteran politicians were selected by Congress President Sonia Gandhi for Team Manmohan. Despite suffering from diabetes, heart problems, arthritis, defective morals, knee and hip replacements, the players came to the field in good spirits. They also brought many male party workers dressed as female cheerleaders with them.
The players for Team No-Man were selected by drawing names from a pool of nobodies, though it is alleged that some players paid huge money to be a part of the limelight. The only person in Team No-Man worth mentioning is Rahul Gandhi, who chose to join this team because he wanted to be an aam aadmi, meaning common man.
The match was restricted to a Twenty20, to please the taxpayers and in accordance with the Congress Party’s austerity drive.
As soon as the match began with Team Manmohan fielding first, it became obvious that captain Manmohan Singh was playing not to please the crowd but to please Sonia Gandhi. When Soniaji spoke to him via loudspeaker from her box in the stadium, “No Manmohan, don’t place him there,” and again, “A little to the right, lei zuccone”, “I want that guy placed on the first-slip and I shall hear no objections,” the captain rushed to do her bidding.
As Team No-Man started to bat, it seemed evident that the batsmen were very kind to the intimidating bowlers. Fielders of Team Manmohan acted like huffing and puffing, but successfully caught the ball each time; except for a few misfieldings by Kapil Sibal and Pranab Mukherjee, for which they were given dire warnings. They managed to knock out all the players of Team No-Man inside 120 runs.
During the break, the players were given a dose of Glucon-D. Those who had fainted were injected with intravenous glucose. Each player in Team Manmohan had his personal physician of the highest quality, ready for any medical emergency, ever since the beginning of the match. However, the Team No-Man were forced to have a reservation of SC/ST/OBC physicians for 5 out of 11 players.
After being attended to by physicians and garlanded by the cheerleaders, Team Manmohan came out to bat. The first six overs were powerplay overs, where the Team No-Man was not allowed to have any fielder on the field, as openers A Raja and Sharad Pawar exhibited a remarkable show of batting. The game went on smoothly until the sixth batman, one of the allies, clamoured to go instead of the fifth one, but was refused. “I’m calling for a no-confidence motion,” he cried and stomped off. Team Manmohan could bat for only 15 overs because after that, despite copious amounts of glucose being injected, none of its players could remain standing. The match was concluded, and the winner was declared using Duckworth-Lewis method. As expected, Team Manmohan was the winner.
When contacted by NTMN, an ecstatic Satish Sharma gushed, “Of course we won! Didn’t I ensure that we would?”
The government claimed that since they won the cricket match, they were people of good calibre, stamina, and integrity, and were capable of leading the nation to great heights.
The post-match presentation ceremony was postponed because all the ministers had to be carried out in stretchers immediately after the match.
Two of the opposition members present at the stadium, cried, “Match fixing!” They demanded Captain Manmohan’s resignation and also informed other BJP activists, who stormed the stadium after a while, but alas, the stadium was empty by then.