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Monday, November 10, 2008

A Part of me Died

Dada, Dada will never ever play again. After the post lunch victory, reality has just started sinking in. It has been eight hours after that historic victory but I have no other thoughts other than Dada in mind right now.


I almost ran into tears as I went through this article Losing my Religion. Its one the best articles on Cricket I have ever read. As Siddhartha Vaidyanathan narrates his story me and all my friends across India felt that he is telling our story. I thank him for writing such a great article. As I looked at this phrase in the post, a part of me died, I felt the same. All these cricketers have been as indispensable to me as my body parts and as they go slowly I feel a great sense of loss and sadness. Its almost the formal end of my childhood which lasted so long due to these great players and the day Tendulkar goes life would never be the same again. Just today I said to someone that almost 4 years of my 24 year life has gone in thinking, watching, playing and talking about Cricket, and these guys made it possible.

I don't know what to write, Dada has been a Dada for me, as a Big Brother he has given me and so many other Indians great moments which we would cherish throughout our life. 1996 when he and Dravid came into the team, I missed his first test hundred. I heard that there is this new guy who is king of off side, bowls some nice swingers too and is very similar to David Gower. His elegant off side drives gives me fond memories of my childhood, after Dada every kid in my township started playing strokes on the offside (generally it was considered that leg side is more scoring with a tennis bowl). Almost invariably when he used to open with Sachin and take first strike he would hit a sweet boundary through the off side. I vaguely recall him hitting Pollock many a times through the off side, the bowl slowly travelling to the fence, and Boycott all praises for the Prince of Kolkata.

As I came from class 6th in 1996 to the 2000's 10th board, Dada had become a prolific run getter in one dayers, I had remained the same students, in the years had passed an unsuccessful world cup, The God becoming the captain unsuccessfully, azhar going in and out of the team, a World Cup where Dada scored a brilliant 183 at Taunton, a World Cup in which I didn't sleep at night and and went into tears momentarily when South Africa lost in the semis, lot of Coca Cola cups at Sharjah where Tendulkar and Dada were killing all bowling attacks, a Sahara Cup where Dada set himself as an all rounder, a period of change in Cricket when Wills ended its sponsorship with the Indian team, Jagmohan Dalmiya headed the ICC, and above all a disgraceful India South Africa series. And then it was Captain DADA.

Although I was a Dada fan but it was after he took up captaincy my respect for him increased, as he and his side with few new players started winning it was a different feeling altogether. Dada positioned the Indian Team as an aggressive unit, for the first time in history I felt that Indian Team was doing something like this, change which Dada brought about was zillion times more than Obama used the word in his campaign. Change we need was brought and it was just amazing. The Great Eden victory still comes in my dream, and the Natwest one, or India almost ruining Steven Waugh's farewell in Australia, and the 2003 World Cup and so many others.

Lot of memories, but sadness is blurring most of them today. Some not so good ones of Dada's spat with Greg Chappell and him being dropped after the Zimbabwae tour, some of prayers which we did for his return to Cricket, some extremely funny like me saying Jai Dada aloud in front of a Dada poster with 20 people standing around before my XAT exam last year in Bangalore, some drunken memories of me and my friend dimpy, patrick and sussu drinking and praying for Dada to score during our tragic loss to Bangladesh in last year's World Cup, more drunkard ones of me and the quark and the enginerd and Ati-Say supporting Dada, and Sandy and Mathuru and Mandu supporting Dravid and Barve as always confused :), some meoments where I cursed Greg Chappel like had none other in my life, two historic moments when I watched Dada Live on stadium, him hitting a Six to Vettori during a Test match in Ahmedbad, him winning in the IPL opener at Bangalore this year, never saw him in one days, some more cursing for Bucknor when half the times gave pathetic decisions to Dada and many a times helped the cause of getting Dada a ban, some moments which I was ashamed of as Dada's Pepsi ad, and another million memories.

I hope Dada finds happiness in whatever he does next, he enjoys life and cricket and some time with his family.

I am happy that I can tell my kids 20 years from now that Dada was there, because I don't think they would ever see a player like him again, they will ever feel the emotions of the game we all love in the same way as we did, but as Siddartha pointed out in his article we belong to this generation and for all of us its a very sad day. Hope is what I have and I hope there will be many more greats who will play for the Indian Cricket Team. In the current lot I don’t have that feel for anyone other than Sehwag or Dhoni. Lets Hope.

So finally this is it, as the Quark would have told me in his favourite singer Jim Morrison's words, this is the end, beautiful friend, or debu would murmured his Darkness filling up the room dialouge, one thing I know, I have lost something which is irreplaceable.

God give me the strength, I would badly need it on the Day when Tendulkar retires.

Technorati Tags: Sourav Ganguly, Dada, Cricket, India

13 comments:

Gravity said...

It is indeed a sad day but then the man we are talking about is none other than Sourav Ganguly, the man who always produced something that no one expected, he preferred to answer "Why ?" rather than "When ?"

Hail Dada!!!

TheQuark said...

* School's Morning Assembly
* Some boring speech (hell I do not even remember it was a speech or what)
* Students are expected to stand in queue (Like prisoners) height wise!

And we are discussing this young enigmatic player named Tendulkar (one fellow even pronounces it incorrectly and is guffawed on)

* Lucknow
* I am at my uncle's farmhouse
* A cranky old black and white TV
* It is chilly and TV can catch signal only in the open!!

And its only me glued to it coz bharat ke do anmol ratan, ek raam to ek lakhan Tendulkar and Ganguly are on blitzkrieg, taking on an insurmountable looking invincible

* Kotla match
* Me and my dad glued to ever ball

And me watching it so hard as if by telekinesis another Paki batsman would err and Jumbo will complete a world record, but silly me with Jumbo who needs the telekinesis you have to wish for it :)

These and numerous other Totkas like the matchstick trick (remember it desi?) will always be etched in my mind :)

Farewell Dada, farewell Jumbo
It is beginning of the end of an era.

Krishna said...

Reading this article, starting with the hyperlinked page on CricInfo...impossible to leave this page without tears!
We all are here with a reason and purpose and he made every cricket lover feel the purpose what he was for and this day is deeply inflictive!
I always felt like respecting him as a player, as an individual. Yeah, he has the persona and made us believe throughout these years that he belongs to a different league of players. I would always feel unfortunate about the way he had to leave. But surely, few last moments when Dhoni asked him to lead the side, made his departure very memorable! Surely, there is sadness and it will remain!

Parul said...

How do ppl (mostly guys, but I dont want to get into a gender debate) get so senti about cricket?!
anyway... in my own simplistic way of unserstanding, I do empathise with you...though only partly...

laxman said...

saurav ganguly -THE GREAT

I SALUTE YOU......

desh said...

@harshal

Hail Dada, yaar kitna mazza aata agar dada kuch din aur khelte, shit yaar i will miss him badly, great man...

@the quark

so many similar moments, althgh th second one was nice...:)
the matchstick trick helped us win th t20 world cup, it was awesome yaar

jai dada

desh said...

@krishna

it was really great of Dhoni to wht he did on th last day, it seems dada really enjoyed it, also dhoni lifting kumble during th third test was smthng i will alwys remember, hope he carries on with th good work


@parul

i hav many frnds (female) who enjoy cricket, althgh many of them tend to be more in the dravid camp than Dada, but they love the game like all th guys

i dont knw wht i can say u, but still if u dont feel th loss, u might not relate to th post

desh said...

@lakshman

jai dada, and jai kumble

keep coming bakk sir...

[Amod] said...

You're right when you say it marks the end of childhood. I felt the same pain when Brian Lara retired. Cricket is losing its charm and it signals that we're moving to a different phase of life. Ganguly was audacious and unorthodox, he will be missed.

Abhishek said...

India was playing against South Africa in one of the Titan Cup league matches...and this time they try to experiment to chase down a formidable target against mighty Proteas attach. I believe that was the first time Sachin n Ganguly started an innings together and they go on to score 117 runs together. Little did I know that I have just witnessed what was only a start of many years of blossoming together. Hail that partnership which could never be replaced by Sehwag-Gambhir duo.

Devil's Advocate said...

no one should be ashamed of dada giving the pepsi ad!!! He indeed showed his resilience and fought hard to come back and gave a new height to cricket!!! I desperately wanted him to come back only because he was a great player who shouldn't have gone in way he was thrown. He left the game at peak and I respect him for that.

arshat.chaudhary said...

hey! came here from PG.. Read your posts.. u write well.. even I wrote a post on Sourav Ganguly and it sounded alot like yours..
Loved your post man.. keep writing..

arshat.chaudhary said...

My post here -
http://thetimepassofindia.blogspot.com/2008/11/goodbye-sourav-meet-your-destination.html