The Cricket Match Essay

Samuel Selvon’s short narrative. “The Cricket Match” explores the elusive racial tensenesss amongst West Indian immigrants populating in England whilst working with English opposite numbers. Selvon sets his narrative in a tyre mill in Chiswick. England. Most likely. the timeline in which this narrative occurs is someplace in the mid 1950’s when England were still settlers of most of the English speech production Caribbean islands.

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The chief thought behind Selvon’s narrative lies with Algernon the supporter. whose desire to manufacture his cognition of cricket. so as to at the same time affect but demo disdain towards the Englishmen around him backfires because it is this self-proclaimed cognition which places him into struggle. Selvon besides generates extra incidents which arise from the focal struggle. throughout the class of his narrative. These incidents. in add-on to the slang which Selvon utilizes. heighten the narrative and add a touch of amusing alleviation for the readers.

The chief struggle of this narrative is Algernon’s preference for overstating his comprehension of. and ability at. the game: “That is the manner to play the game… That is cricket. lovely cricket. ” when really. he did non like cricket. However Algernon becomes overjoyed that the West Indian cricket squad are ruling England in some facet. because. he displays slighted feelings towards the English people at the beginning of the narrative as seen in paragraph four. lines three – five: ‘…it have some trials that don’t like the game at all. and among them was Algernon. But he see a opportunity to give the Nordics tone…’

This serves to exemplify his apparent disfavor for English people. every bit good as the fact that he wants to make a facade about himself. Interestingly though. the struggle begins to rise when Charles. an Englishman and a cricketer. attacks Algernon and invites him to play in a ‘friendly’ cricket lucifer. Algernon is all of a sudden confronting a quandary. Either he accepts Charles’ challenge and dramas in the lucifer. or he declines and backs out of the challenge. However in Algernon’s head. whichever pick he makes. he realizes that he could be exposed as a fraud.

Selvon ingeniously crafts the declaration. though with little absurdness. through a slightly amusive and sympathetic mode really similar to that of a picaresque novel. Algernon manages to compose an unenthusiastic squad to play against the English squad. Still. even more divertingly. the English participants are every bit afraid of Algernon’s squad and vice-versa. The lucifer commences with the West Indian eleven batting foremost. and exposing a applaudable though causeless public presentation. Conversely. and possibly handily though. rain begins to fall. hence conveying the lucifer to an disconnected terminal.

This declaration allows Algernon to salvage his ‘credibility’ and farther twit his English colleagues: ‘“If my chiropteran didn’t fly out my hand”… as if to state he would hold lost the ball in the other county. ’ and: “… next cricket season I will acquire a crisp 11 together… now if you want me to demo you how I make that stroke…” This decision which Selvon employs gives Algernon a reasonably devilish feature. and therefore the picaresque similarity.

Selvon’s secret plan construction is fundamentally simple and straightforward. The storyteller introduces the narrative and foreground the major defect of the supporter. which so manifests itself as a cardinal portion of the struggle. While the lifting action begins to intensify. minor episodes associating to the struggle Begin to come up. thereby heightening the dramatic consequence of the flood tide. The plot’s falling action is evident when Algernon resolves one of his personal devils. albeit. both temporarily and by chance of class.

The denouement of the narrative rapidly follows from the falling action. and is instead disconnected. which increases the rigidness of the decision. Yet this does non wholly decrease its plausibleness. Algernon’s chief character is comparatively level and does non develop nor demo any deepness throughout the narrative. His is besides the lone character that chiefly has any signifier of word picture. The linguistic communication assortment which Selvon adopts for this narrative consists chiefly of a signifier of Caribbean slang. The signifier of this common seems to be Trinidadian Mesolect Creole. This is as a consequence of the chief character arising from Trinidad and Tobago. and seemingly shacking at that place for a period of clip.

An illustration of an incident which consequences from chief struggle in this narrative transpires merely after the initial meeting between Algernon and Charles. This occurs when Algernon and Roy are discoursing their quandary: ‘Afterwards in the canteen holding 11s Roy tell Algernon: “You see what your large
oral cavity acquire us into. ”’ At this occasion in the narrative. both Roy and Algernon appreciate the badness of their state of affairs and are urgently seeking to get at a solution: ‘They sit down at that place in the canteen cogitating on the job.

…Roy say. “it expression as if we will hold to hustle an 11 somehow. We can’t back out of it now. ”’ Hence. this illustration supports the focal struggle. while at the same clip enlightens the readers to the fact that both Algernon and Roy are pretensive. Another case in the narrative arises after Algernon gathers other West Indian immigrants in his flat to do agreements for the lucifer. This focuses the readers’ attending to the fact that. amongst the group. Wilky is the lone 1 who demonstrates an involvement in the lucifer: ‘“What about some pattern? ” Wilky say uneasily. Wilky was the lone fellar who truly serious about the game. ’

Basically. the narrative involves one West Indian man’s awkwardness at cricket but his disposition to convert his English equivalents otherwise. The supporter saw an chance to arise against. and roast a apparently oppressive. colonial authorization through the avenue of athletics. one time he was non straight involved. However due to his attitude. every bit good as the misconception of West Indians by English people. it was hard for Algernon to stay merely as a witness. and therefore his eventual engagement in the game became inevitable.

Additionally. playing in the lucifer appeared to hold a positive consequence on Algernon’s attitude and fractionally. besides on his character. At basal degree significance nevertheless. the narrative could merely be interpreted as a cricket lucifer played between West Indians and Englishmen because of a deficiency of discretion on one man’s portion.


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