21 years and I’ve never been a big fan of Sports, especially not Cricket. And coming from an Indian, that is a bit of a big deal, considering that the country is pretty much obsessed with the sport. Afterall, Sachin Tendulkar, M.S. Dhoni, and Virat Kohli are household names with movies being made about them and so much more.
Right, so growing up, my dad was a huge fan which meant that every time there was a match on TV, that’s what was on TV. And every time that happened, I’d crib, my mum and I would gang up on him asking him to switch to a movie or well, anything else. (we didn’t succeed as often as you’d think).
But then, something happened.
It was 2nd April 2011. It was the day of the finals of the ICC World Cup 2011 happening at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. India was playing against Sri Lanka in the finals.
I still remember, at this point in time, my TV was in my house lounge area (Hall) which is the biggest room in my house. About halfway through the game, Sri Lanka had just finished batting (having won the toss and chosen to bat first) and India had just started their turn. I was walking by the room when I heard my dad cry out. I peeped in and he was there, in front of the TV, eyes concentrating. Sri Lanka had scored a 274 with 6 wickets in the 50 overs. Turned out, my dad had cried out after both Sehwag and Tendulkar had been bowled out, putting India in a kind of a bad position.
I have no idea what came over me, but I sat down, next to my dad, just to sort of see the next ball. And somewhere there, something possessed me to stay right there next to my dad, eyes staring at the TV, crying out for every bad thing that happened and shouting out at every good thing. And that’s where I was when my mum got home from work hours later. The minute she walked into the room, the Indian team scored a very needed ‘6’. And she walked out and a wicket fell. She walked back in after five minutes and we got another boundary. And that was it. We had her sitting right there not moving until the match got over and the final 6 was hit winning the match for us!
Don’t get me wrong, the match didn’t change anything for me. I didn’t suddenly start liking or watching cricket matches after that day. I don’t know if it was that India was in the finals of the World Cup or just the heat of the moment and bonding with my dad, but to this day, I still look back on this memory. After all, it was the day ‘I’ watched a cricket match!
The reason this came up even more vividly in my mind was that history repeated itself (albeit with a diff team for a different match). Twice.
Being from Chennai, myself, it was no doubt that despite never watching a match, I was a fan of CSK (Chennai Super Kings) at the IPL matches ever since they began. So of course, when CSK won in the finals in 2010 and 2011 in the IPL, I watched the final matches.
So yea, I had started thinking that when my favorite team went to the finals, I would watch! Those few matches, I could deal with.
What surprised me, however, was last month when I was visiting family in Dubai. The 2018 IPL was underway and on that day, 24th April 2018, CSK was playing against RCB (Royal Challengers Bangalore). My uncle was watching the match and I just kept fritting in and out of the room just, sort of keeping myself updated on the match. And yet, the last hour of the match, I was rooted in front of the TV, throwing back to the World Cup Finals match, crying out at the losses, shouting at the wins and forcing my mum to stay in the room.
And well, yay, we won!
So what’s my point you ask? I don’t have one. I guess, ‘I just like Cricket’*, sometimes, maybe, depending on.
*Terms and conditions apply 😉