”Well! India has already been on the world map but with this .... ” , exclaimed the French gentleman, Monseiur. F.Johnson (who , as the English would say, knows bullocks about cricket), then made a gesture with a fist and shook his hand up and down. Usually accepted to be a gesture which indicates that whatever is being talked about , is the next big thing, it was a terse way to reflect what was going on in the heads of not just a billion + Indians but the whole planet. (Inspite of the gesture’s enactment coming this time from a Frenchman who hasn’t an iota of an idea, does he ? :p But this very act from a cricket-illiterate person shows that the Indian victory transcends in impact beyond the boundaries of the cricketing world or of those who understand the rules of cricket)
Pardon the author’s lethargy in writing about the Indian WC victory a tad too late. But it does take a substantial chunk of time to recover from a happy resurrection (read exponential increase of interest in cricket followed by an explosion of pure pristine joy)
It all happened in the finals of the 2003 cricket WC. India vs Australia. Australia batted first , Ponting the captain made a century and India was nowhere near the run chase from the very start of its innings. As the order crumbled, so did my interest in cricket. I was 16 then.
Now 24, I saw the same situation in the quarterfinals. Aussies were batting first , Ponting hit a century. But the difference! India won 😀 And that was the genesis of an individualistic cricket-frenzy that had been dormant for nearly 8 years ….
The semifinals between India and Pakistan , though pre-match-hyped as one of the greatest matches in WC history was edging on ‘predictable’ , at least towards the last quarter. But it was a happy ending nonetheless. Also, perhaps because the nation’s premiers were present, the players were behaving themselves a little more than I would care to expect 😉 (read , no dhishum dhishum like in the 1996 quarterfinals)
The finals was good. I know I am understating but I need not say further. The Srilankan wrist players are like the super posh classy personalities of cricket. Subtle, seemingly harmless, zilch show of machismo, but indomitably powerful in their impact. They did contribute to my BP rising. But it was not exactly a nail biting finish. At least to my newly re born cricketing self , the result was obvious while there were still about 20 overs left in the Indian batting. But well ! Perhaps I was showing irrational complacence, which, thankfully, was not disrupted 😛
Glad India won the World Cup. I am very glad