The Maestro is Back with a Bang and The Wall stands Tall…

There are times when I have absolutely hated being away from the television set and the stadium. Yesterday was one of those times. Call me selfish, but I have also hated the fact when other grounds in India have witnessed some mind-blowing performances compared to Wankhede. Well nothing compares to watching a match live at the stadium, having done that every year I can vouch for it. Sadly, that occasion chooses to arrive every 365 days and I cannot stop envying the Nagpur folks!

I also hate it when God decides to tease me. Yesterday, I could not get to see the match live, reached home really late, and switched on every damn channel on TV to catch a glimpse of his prolific shot-making but saw none. I caught Dravid’s late blast, Pathan’s wild six, Bhajji’s & Karthik’s mysterious spins, but none of his 🙁 Yes I’m most surprised that TV channels did not decide to concentrate only on him. I’m also glad in a way:-)

From what I hear Sachin played an absolute blinder. I went back reminiscing the Sachin of good old days, the master of spin, the kamikaze kid, the one guy after Sunil Gavaskar who stood upright (despite his little frame) to tall and lanky pace bowlers of the world, the one who said in their face I don’t care what you bowl, I have an answer to everything.

The cover drive, the exquisite back foot play, the sweet timing, the glorious straight drive, the delicate paddle, the dancing down the tracks against the spinners, the front foot shots, the awesome timing to send the ball packing into the crowds, they were all back with a bang!
Remember Auckland 1994, Sharjah 1998, World Cup 2003? Ah yes, those lovely memories, they came back to life yet again, yesterday. What a comeback!

I was most impressed seeing Rahul Dravid at the press conference; more than his batting. What a six, what a shot, he has played it before; remember Taunton, Vs SL, 1999, in that epic partnership with Saurav. It was a similar shot that started the run-riot that followed. Back to the conference, he was confident, aggressive and so sure of himself. Now that he has the reigns for a full series, there is a definite change in his demeanor, maybe we will see his aggressive side too. I did not see the entire match, but of the little I saw, I thought that the Jayasurya dismissal was very well thought out.

Sending Pathan one down was a masterstroke. I just hope that it does not become a regular thing. After a good start worth a risk, but not everytime. This young lad is going to go places.
Karthik, Bhajji and Sreesanth had a good outing and Ajit if you are not going to learn, you surely are going to be in deep trouble sooner than later. This time around your chances of bouncing back could diminish. I hope to see Sehwag back in form, he is having a poor run and it is not helping the team! I also want to see Kaif back, he is not as talented as some in the team but that guy has athleticism, is super in the field and most important of all has loads of grit. I’ll trade that last quality for most.

So as of now we will just sit back and enjoy the moment. You don’t want to get your expectations too high with the Indian team! Remember the ODI series Vs Pak in 2005?


Anyone Seen a Gents’ Local?




  1. Minal

    @Arzan: Yup me lost the touch too, now trying ot get back to the routine! A sudoku a day keeps your brain awake;-)

    @Tugga: Yes, I’m not dead, won’t spare you of the torture so soon;-)

  2. Tugga

    Oy Minu, zinda hai?

  3. Arz000n

    Not much into cricket…never enjoyed it actually…I was having good nap while India was playing final match against SL


    Just saw Sudoku Online..boy I lost the touch afta few weeks of gap. Me solving puzzle for the day now.


  4. Truman

    We won the series and how !
    Update update!

  5. Minal

    @Tugga: Now don’t be such a rude critic:-( Though I’d wish the same too..


    @Nirav: Well the team has started off well. Now to maintain that consistency. You bet I remember that six. Enjoyed every moment of that final, hope we had won. It would have been like hitting the nail in the coffin real hard!

  6. Nirav

    The next 2 ODIs just go on to strengthen the belief that the maestro as well as the team is back again.

    And speaking of Dravid’s sixes, do you remember the one he hit against Allan Donald in South Africa that started a little bit of a verbal duel between them? That was when Donald was at his peak and I dont think anyone would have hit him over his head for a six till them….

  7. Deepa

    Hugs from me, the self-proclaimed greatest Sachin fan. I started blogging the day he made a comeback. And what a comeback! Was it great or what?
    I am gonna visit your blog regularly from now.:-)

  8. Tugga

    I wish he’d contribute in a run chase for once

  9. Minal

    @Sakshi:That’s precisely what I mentioned in my last sentence:-))

    @Hiren: Everyone is hoping the same. It’s a pleasure to see him bat like this than what he was in the last two years!

    @Truman: Yes I did! Rocking isn’t it?

  10. Truman

    did you watch the second match? Sachinnings?!

  11. Hiren

    Its nice to see Sachin in full flow after such a long gap. Shows that he is a true champion. Hope he maintains this till the next world cup.

  12. Sakshi

    Well lets see how we hold up…remember with Pakistan..we won and then lost 4 games in a row.

    So lets keep our fingers…toes crossed.

  13. Minal

    @Truman: Bangar for Ajit? No, never been fond of him. A good trier yes, not much talent there. Did not see him last much.
    And yes, I do hope Kaif captains India someday.

    @Tugga:“And yes, Ajit is an idiot” Finally you agree! Kaif is hardly overrated:-)Yuvraj is!
    He is quite a shame on Indian batting. Can’t play spin being born in a land that produced world class spinners, and whose bowling is bread and butter for Indian Batsman!

    @Mary: I do, I do. I used to bring up all sorts of reasons to bunk school and college to watch a match. My MBA college was close to Wankhede Stadium, so I even caught matches in between my lectures! But there is simply too much work now!

  14. Mary

    Nice post 🙂

    I have to say I never knew what it was like to support a ‘losing’ team until this Ashes series came along! It does make the victories all that much sweeter 🙂

    Don’t you hate days like that.. you’re the only person in the world interested in the cricket match.. and the only person who can’t seem to watch it no matter what!

  15. Tugga

    Kaif’s fine; I do think both he and Yuvraj are overrated though. They don’t have the ‘it’. Yuvraj to some extent, yes, but he sucks against spin. And yes, Ajit is an idiot

  16. Truman

    Hi Minal,

    I notice that you said this about Ajit Agarkar – “if you are not going to learn, you surely are going to be in deep trouble sooner than later“.

    Don’t you think he already is in deep trouble? I don’t know but the lad fails to impress even after so many chances. Bangar could have been a good replacement but I think age is not on his side since the selectors take the 2007 world cup into account.

    On Kaif, I would go as far as saying that I see a future captain in him.

    Keep writing 🙂 and my take on yesterday’s match here.

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