Such was the craze for cricket during my school days, we would envy the guy who would bat for a longer duration. As a team we would wait for the batsman to score a few big runs however silently and secretly wished that the ball would knock the bails out. India is a cricket mad nation and right from the chaiwala to the kindergarten kid you will see enormous bundles of gyaan being given on how to handle the delivery which is incoming.
Based on the time duration we would decide the number of overs to be played, the pitch would be the road/tarmac. Guess what if at all there would be a small ditch in the tarmac near the batting area it would be a sweet spot for the spinner to utilize the area for hitting the wicket beating the batsman’s guard. One of the sweetest memories that I can recall and vow never to forget was during the 96 World Cup between India and Pakistan, It was a Quarter Final and I will say you cannot even imagine what it was to savor this challenge between two nations. It was as if Aamir Sohail yelled at all of us that he will knock every ball out of the park, what a delivery it was, what a delivery, what a delivery I bet Aamir will never forget for the rest of the life in any corner of the world when Venkatesh Prasad knocked the wicket right out of the woods.
I was licking my fingers, the whole of India was dancing and not to calm down, cricket my man is a game which can never be taken away from an Indian. A lot has changed today when the players play fast paced game but the 50 overs match is a different ball game and discussing the game over a cup of tea, while going to office and analyzing who could have played in our team I bet you even the BCCI can’t figure out the version of playing 11 if Indians had their say.
When its cricket it’s like the guys in the middle are watched by praying eyes and fighting souls, every ball is detected by unseen eyes and every defense is applauded by the loudest cheer. It’s been a long time since I spun the cherry, it’s been a long while since I heaved the bat but the passion still lives on.