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Idiot’s Guide to Cricket World Cup

Posted by Neeraj Kumar on March 19, 2007

(Published on 17th March)

Being an Indian you are obligated to share the excitement generated by Cricket. What more, its World Cup! So, I was feeling a bit low when I was required to be reminded of India’s first match today. I don’t do well when I am at my memory’s disposal. In India, it would have been so different when cricket takes over the entire nation and deserted streets scream of an on-going Indian match. This is the tournament where eight cricket playing nations (and the rest who have made the numbers on first come first serve basis, it seems. Canada and Bermuda?). India is playing their first match today with Bangladesh. Mind you, Bangladesh have beaten Australia. But, everybody beats Australia these days. Anyways, not having prior knowledge of this game almost gave me the feeling of having cheated my Indian spirit. Come on, after all, cricket is one thing that unifies us- the Indians. Ofcourse, Saurav Ganguly has to be IN the team otherwise Bengal becomes a different nation altogether. And it helps if India is winning every game or else a couple of players might get attacked. But, considering the number of people who sanction this game’s patriotic spirit far undermines these couple of exceptions. (Note: We never considered Shiv Sena part of this mass as they are very eager to destroy every cricket pitch where Pakistan will (or might) play. This goes against our moral conviction to build a secular country. And moreover, they don’t like Valentine’s day which is simply unacceptable when we are trying to build an image as a tolerant nation.)

Talk of cricket is incomplete without the mention of Australia. The most famous Australian we have on our soil is unanimously considered a legend. But, he, Mr Greg Chappell is more famous for being the Indian coach who managed to show Saurav Ganguly the door. Now, thats the Australian way of doing things. One year hence, Saurav Ganguly does nothing impressive on the cricket field and makes his way back in to the Indian cricket team. Now thats the Indian way of doing things. We reach greatest of heights with least of effort. You just need to know the right set of people.

So, whom will I like to win the World Cup? Being an Indian, I will love to to see India win and it seems like they have almost got the right combination. But, have they got the right attitude? Thats for us to wait and see. If India fails, I, like most others go for the underdogs. So, it has to be Australia. Now, before you take my right away of tagging them as underdogs go and check their record in last few matches. I mean I know that there has been lots of Australian action but most of that has been off the pitch. And our very own Mr Gavaskar has given them a crash course on good behaviour. Gavaskar has been so energetic to air his concern when he has got chance to do so that it is almost difficult to believe that he is the same guy who managed to stay on the pitch for entire 60 overs and failed to score the century! Hey, nothing should surprise you. We are Indians!

PS: I have to talk about England. I am sure they will win the World Cup but, not this time. The good thing is that they seem to be least bothered.

Update (18th March): Well, so India did it again. Good thing is that so did our neighbours. For Pakistan world-cup is over. For us, we are almost there. Unless, I have spoken too soon. Well-done to Bangladesh. Honest passion that they have for this sport owes them several great moments like these. And what about Irish?! Seems like these countries are doing more than making up numbers. Far more than that. Ask a Pakistani fan. Or an angry Indian for that matter if they are not busy destroying “hard” earned assets of our beloved cricketers.

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