Waking up at 4: 30 this morning meant that my body was aching for an afternoon siesta. Post lunch, Pakistan had notched up their 303 in fifty overs leaving the Indians to chase successfully to draw the series. At this point in time, I felt that the Indian team had done pretty well to contain Pakistan to 300 odd. With another blazing start, at the fifteen over mark with a whopping run rate touching seven almost, they looked set to cruise to 350. Yet, tight bowling in the middle overs and smart captaining from Dravid pulled them back to 303. On the Indian prospect, Srikkanth and Amarnath echo my sentiments... "haan ji, yeh to fighting total hai ji, agar top order click ho jaye to india ke paas baating strength hai is total ko chase karne ke liye..."
The first two overs fly past, not without a skirmish or two as Sehwag gets caught off a no ball from Rana. I'm fighting a losing battle to stay awake and i give in. A few zzzzz's later, I turned on the television, Lo and Behold... to see Srikkanth and Amarnath AGAIN! Eh? I rub my eyes. IF you thought you had seen the worst of blue woes, think again. We have successfully folded up. Once again, without the semblance of a fight. Blame it on a slower pitch, blame it on external pressure, blame it on a non performing captain who was conveniently banned... even the most die hard Indian fans ( yours truly ) have begun doubting the team's effort to remain consistent.
My mind rushes back to one of my favourite Amul hoardings of all time , 'Tendu. Ten don't.' Sure. That equation has changed. It's now 'Veeru or Ve're Gone.' India's cricketing fortunes were never predictable but just as we seemed to be forcing ourselves out of the 'one man dependency' trap, PLONK, we've fallen back into it. I'm a fool and so be it. I will still wake up at odd hours to perhaps see the men in blue crumble for under 120, but I sense there are certain others who have lost their patience. Team India owes their next performance to those who still believe.
p.s: PRAY, what was Roshni Chopra wearing?!?!?!