It seems that the launch of his coffee table book Wide Angle just two days ago has indeed become a rather fortunate event for Anil Kumble as his team literally mauled the Rajasthan Royals and handed them the most ignominious defeat that they have experienced in the IPL so far.
Anil Kumble has risen like a phoenix and is guiding the fortunes of Royal Challengers Bangalore in such an adroit manner that one feels that may be he should rethink about his decision of retiring from active cricket. Anil Kumble epitomizes and is manifestation in the form of brand icon for the gentleman’s game called cricket. No wonder, when his book, Wide Angle was released in Bangalore at the hands of Shane Warne and owner of Royal Challenger Bangalore, Vijay Mallya, most of his teammates made it a point to attend the event. It was an occasion for celebration for present and past contemporaries of cricket as it contains an eclectic mix of photographs about the events happening inside the dressing room, and it provides a connect to events in Indian cricketing history.
Anil Kumble has a very watchful eye and being a part of the playing eleven for more than a decade, his book is sort of photographic journey of the progress that Indian cricket team has made during the last decade or so.
While vignettes of cricket are in abundance, the concern and care for wildlife is reflected from the choice of photographs in the book. It is worth mentioning that Anil Kumble was among the first persons that stood up to get counted for the cause of the Tigers along with his fellow Karnataka mate Rahul Dravid.
It is after a really long time that a cricketer has taken to the printed word to chronicle the vignettes of Indian cricket, using the moments of informality as the point of binding element in the book.
Photography in the present times is emerging as a vital source of reconstruction of history, and for Indian cricket history chronicling; Wide Angle should be a treasure house of information. One only hopes more such works would start flowing from former cricketers, and more number of cricketers as also other sports persons would pick up the camera as well to chronicle a part of the history.
As far as Rajasthan Royals is concerned, Anil Kumble could give a copy of his Wide Angle as a commemoration of the moment to them, and it could be used as an inspiration by the Royals to turn their fortunes.
By: Suman Rai