Not really. But the first that I planned, and sat down to watch. Entirely. Almost.
Sitting with friends who are as clueless about cricket as I am. Recognising few on the Indian team and fewer on the other. Wondering when Rahul Dravid stopped playing. Astonished that Sourav Ganguly is now a commentator. Wondering who’d pay him to do it.
Screaming after every four. Screaming for sixes. Hoping that Pakistani players would herniate themselves while running to the boundary. Asking a friend to spend the rest of the match in the loo because someone hit two fours while she went to relieve herself.
Wishing I was at Mohali.
Brahminising the player’s name to Salman Bhatt. Googling for the rules of Powerplay. Feeling that LBW is such a sad way to be sent off.
Plotting to assassinate Yuvi when he got out on a duck. Thanking God for Tendlya and his luck. Bashing up friend with pillow when Tendlya’s wicket fell.
Having my heart leap into my mouth every time a wicket fell. Realising it’s only a replay.
Wishing that five wicket dude would drop dead.
Cursing the Indian batting order. Watching two episodes of The Big Bang Theory when things got boring.
Being firmly convinced that India will lose after finishing up at 260.
Watching Yuvraj redeem himself. Predicting when the next wicket would fall and being right. Mostly.
Enjoying the sight of Sonia Gandhi leaning against the giant Gatorade bottle with her sari tucked in at the waist. Cheering for Aamir and his moustache. Wanting to dance to the songs they played during the breaks in play.
Praying that the last man’s wicket is taken, even after having won the match. Having my prayers answered.
Feeling a twinge at the sight of Afridi with tears in his eyes.
Thinking that if India had played Pakistan at Wankhede, match day and the next would have been public holidays.
Going to the food court at Juhu beach for dinner. Spotting two well dressed women with dishevelled hair hopping along the road with a huge Tricolour. Hearing pro-India slogans being shouted out by young men hanging out of car windows. Shouting along with them.
Meeting two other crazy friends who want to continue celebrating all the way to Marine drive.
Having my rickshawallah told – India jeet gayi, bhaiyya, ghar jaake aish karo! – by complete strangers, on the way home.
Am going to watch the Final on a giant screen with a cricket crazy horde in the college canteen. Hoping Nehra and Zaheer do an even better job. And hoping, praying and believing that Tendlya will score his 100th 100.
The last time I felt so patriotic was when Rehman won his Oscars. And I didn’t even like Jai Ho.
I still don’t love cricket. But I’ve begun to understand why everyone else does.
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