January 15, 2010

My book tells everything that the blog didn’t: Fake IPL Player

Click here for a Hindi version of this interview
The Fake IPL Player (henceforth to be known as FIP) needs no introduction. Last year during the Indian Premier League, a blog suddenly appeared that was purportedly written by a fringe ‘anonymous’ player of one of the IPL’s most popular franchises. Giving a warts-and-all brutally irreverent fly’s eyes view of the inner workings of a doomed team and liberally peppered with salacious accounts of off-field superstars (whose actual identities were hidden behind easily-guessable monikers –a few of which like Kaan Molu and Appam Chutiya have since become part of our vocabulary) the FIP became a viral Internet phenomenon.

Who was FIP? Was he actually a player? Was it a publicity gimmick? More importantly, was this the truth? Or like everything else we are told, the ardha-satya?

The FIP became water-cooler talk in every office where cricket is discussed as people poured over screens dissecting the allusions to real players in posts. Certain players were suspected, a newspaper even broke the so-called identity of FIP and then retracted, the said franchise came up with an official statement on their blog, and as the FIP’s posts sounded realistically accurate, confusion became more confounded. The world waited eagerly till the end of the tournament, not just because it was overtly long but because FIP promised to reveal his identity only then.

He did. Well not really. In a video which showed his shadow, the FIP confessed to not being a player. Then who was he? Just a Indian cricket fan, but not an ordinary one. One who during “the faceless journey of life”,  happened “to get intimately exposed to cricket. From the Kings of Bollywood to the pimps of cricket and vice-versa”, an experience that converted him into “an insider, the the fly on the wall, the ghost in the darkness.”

He left with a promise.

Well the FIP is back to make history. With his book ‘Gamechangers’ being brought out by Harper Collins. And to tell you more is the man himself in his first ever interview. In conversation with the winner of the "Indiblog of the Year" award winner Arnab Ray.

In case you are wondering, this interview is not due to the fact that both FIP & Arnab share the publisher (Arnab's book 'May I Hebb Your Attention Pliss', published by Harper Collins would be out in March 2010). It is normally the tradition that the winner of the top laurels, "Indiblog of the Year" award, is interviewed at Indibloggies. However we felt that since he had been interviewed after winning the same award before it would be better that we did an interview of someone else. And FIP, the winner for 2008 Indibloggies Sports Blog of the Year, was the obvious choice.

Enough talk. Silence. Here he is. The Fake IPL Player. For the first time since he stopped blogging.