Tag Archives: Cricket diplomacy

Cup of billion dreams

Over a billion dreams came true as India wins the cricket world cup defeating Sri Lanka convincingly by six wickets.

With captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni hitting the winning six, a nation erupted into euphoria beyond its geographical boundaries.

Indians living overseas were filled with joy witnessing the men in blue come in their true colours to lift the coveted trophy which has eluded the cricket crazy nation for close to three decades.

The game does unimaginable things to this country; it brought two neighbours at loggerheads together on a peaceful platform a couple of days back in Mohali.

And if you think cricket diplomacy was the height, big surprise came when the UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi joined the aam aadmi in celebrating the country’s biggest success in recent times.

Superstar Amitab Bachchan tweets: “It is MADNESS outside!! Abhishek, Aishwariya and me on the rooftop of car, waving tricolour and just screaming!! Hundreds with us.”

Indeed there were billions, even outside India.

Watching the final at a pub in Wembley was nothing less then being inside the stands of Wankhede Stadium.

Every run was cheered with uproar, every time the ball went past the ropes the drums started beating and the decibel level increased with every passing over till the time when the pub fell silent when Lankans broke a partnership.

Within minutes of the victory, the usually silent London streets resembled the familiar chaotic streets back home; people came out on the roads and jammed the traffic, dancing to the dhols.

The triumph is going to last long and should. After a long wait Mahi and his men have given the nation a reason to be one in the true sense of word.

It’s just been awesome. Let the revelries begin.


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India-Pakistan:Against and with each other, tale of two games

Calling India taking on Pakistan in the semi finals of the Cricket World cup on Wednesday an important knock out match will be termed as understatement.

Though it is the right statement, it will be understatement.

For India and Pakistan when pitted against each other are always a mouth-watering prospect.

Frenzy has been built up around this clash between arch rivals that adds on to the hysteria that surrounds the game.

The three P’s: Public, Press, Politicians want to cash on the most anticipated game in the subcontinent. While the craze among first two is understandable the addition of third one adds (in my view) an uncalled for fourth’ P Pressure to the game.

This hurried move by the Prime Minister’s office to add diplomacy to the game of cricket is a debatable issue. We the people at NDTV raked up the issue: Can cricket diplomacy be effective for India and Pakistan relations. Does symbolism have real value?

It’s not as if this is for the first time cricket has been mixed with diplomacy both the countries have in the past used the move to certain degree of success, but is this the apt time.

It’s the semi finals of the world cup and one of the premiers will walk out unhappy.

Wonder if this will add to easing the atmosphere.

However, at the moment who wants the atmosphere to ease, certainly none of the three P’s.

From Mohali cut to Miami, miles away the same to countries are in action; this time together.

India’s Rohan Bopanna and Pakistan’s Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi playing as a doubles team have reached the pre quarter finals of the Miami Masters.

Their win might have made it to couple of columns of the last page in sports section or a couple of paragraphs on news websites.

Termed as Indo-Pak express this duo silently has been trying to show the gesture of unity for some time now. After the initial media euphoria and coining of the term the fizz has settled.

One for the obvious reason that rivalry grabs headlines, peace doesn’t. Also they haven’t been hugely successful so far.

Anyways coming back to gestures was wondering could the premiers have not made a gesture by watching a game of Indo-Pak express in action.

There the tension would have been eliminated as both play together and not against each other.

A tweet on the same generated mixed response, while many retweeted the thought others said they are like ‘Federer-Nadal’ and some said not a bad idea.

But on a practical level that doesn’t ever look likely.

As Rajdeep Sardesai of CNN-IBN tweeted, “After watching most of our news channels, feel we want to make it out to be World War 3. Jingoism ‘sells’. Sad.

Perhaps that is the harsh reality, which will take long to change.


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