India winning the cricket world cup on April 2, 2011 was monumental in more than one ways. For one, it was the end of a excruciatingly long waiting period for a nation that is absolutely crazy about this sport. Those black n white pictures of Kapil and his team with the cup on the Lords balcony in 1983 needed to be replaced. Obviously those were special moments first world cup victory I guess is very much like first love, wont exactly fade away to some small black corner of the brain. However as far as I am concerned I wasn't even born in 1983 and like a million other cricket crazy young guns I deserved my world cup moment.
...and then there is Sachin Tendulkar. Doubt if there is anyone more deserving to have his personal "world cup" moment. For over two decades he has been shouldering the hopes and aspirations of a billion people like a true champion. If cricket was an individual sport, I guess we would have won all the 6 world cups that he has been part of. It is only fair that he finally got a worthy team and support staff that had their undivided attention focused towards the goal. The planning and execution by Gary Kirsten and his support staff was nothing short of miraculous. Obviously none of it would have done any good if he didn't have a talented pool of players to work with. But talent was never the problem with Indian cricket. The challenge is ensuring that players are not distracted by the God like status and treatment they receive from the fans. Dhoni as a individual seems to be handling that well, may be something to do with his small town upbringing. But whatever it is, his calm and poised composure on and off the field has been a refreshing change.
While I am at it, I should mention Dada i.e. Saurav Ganguly. It was the Prince of Calcutta who started bringing about the change in the Indian cricket circles and steered the team in the right direction. If it weren't for his out of the box thinking and stubborn attitude to support young talent despite multiple failures people like Dhoni and Yuvraj would have met the same fate as Kaif or a Parthiv Patel.
I still picture the victory shot by Dhoni, a shot filled with arrogance from a man who made sure the team stuck to their plan and took them home. Wonder how much of a credit should be given to BCCI for this. They sure are the muscle in the cricketing world these days but is there more to them than just money?
Personally I doubt it.
The very fact that they were so adamant on hosting the fourth season of IPL just one week after the most prestigious tournament in world cricket tells you something about their intentions. Obviously once they decided they would host it there is no organization in the cricketing world that could stop them. But as a cricket fan, I felt cheated. Just under two weeks is too darn less for the enthusiasm and celebrations of being the world champions. Took about 5 odd days for social media to switch from Indian victory to regional loyalties. I would love to assume that these people follow the game for the entertainment and not the love of the game itself. But it is what it is...
There was a whole post I was planning to write on this mixed feeling and love-hate relation with IPL 4 but then I read Abhishek Purohit's piece on cricinfo and didnt feel the need to say anything more.
Just in case you are curious below is the link for the post.
Too drained to care
Till the next one...