Saturday 21 July 2007

Lords Test, Potter Mania and the Blank Out

What does one do if he is smitten, equally, by the ‘Potter Mania’ on one hand and the good old genre of gentleman’s game called ‘Test Cricket’ on the other? Saturday dawned upon with a mad scramble to get hold of the ‘Deathly Hallows’. That the book was last in its series and over 600 pages long did not help in making the choice less difficult.

It was ‘Star Cricket’ that unwittingly solved this conundrum by blanking out the first test. If you are living in India, this isn’t exactly a new phenomenon. It happens every time a new sports channel sprouts up from nowhere. ESPN - Star Sports already has two channels in their bouquet, exclusively dedicated to sports. What value did they bring by having a third channel is beyond imagination, if one discounts the ‘raking in moolah at the expense of end user’ factor. With cable distribution largely in the hands of unorganized sector, I suspect, it isn’t the end of travail for sports fans in the country.

But having your cable feed blanked, comes with its own fringe benefits. I took this opportunity to tune in to BBC’s Radio Five Live. Listening to the likes of Boycott, Henry Blofeld, Gavaskar and Christopher Martin Jenkins was a throwback to the 1980s, when live telecast was still in its nascent stages in India. To some extent, it alleviated the gloom of having missed out on a test match at Lords.

The Lords test itself is tantalizingly poised. Like the two England wickets that tilted the balance slightly towards India on first day, Jaffer’s wicket last evening couldn’t have come at a better time for England. At 145/4, it reminds me of the first test against Australia at Brisbane in 2003. Then, Australia, having scored 323 in their first essay, had reduced India to 127/4. Gangly was fighting the demons of fast bowling, both in his mind and on the field. In company of VVS Laxman added 145 priceless runs for the fifth wicket and in the process not only scored his first century in Australia, but also earned a creditable draw for India.

Coincidentally, that match was also marred by weather. Weather permitting, this one looks dead set for a result. Indian bowlers have got their team back into the match after letting them down on the first day. Can the batsmen do the same for their team on day three?

As for Harry Potter’s last book, I would rather disclose not its content. But a word on my favourite charm/magical spell from the HP series - The Patronus Charm - which conjures an incarnation of the caster's innermost positive feelings, such as joy, hope, or the desire to survive, known as a Patronus.

I expect Indian team to conjure up a good Patronus Charm to shield themselves from First Test Blues on an overseas tour.

Expecto Patronum!

14 comments:

Soulberry said...

Hi CG,

Coincidence...I was writing on the same. Was at the shop at 5.00 am to humor my son's urge to share the excitement at being the early bird, even though I had booked it in advance. Radio 5 has been salve and succour...nostalgic.

I still remember Azza's innings of intense precision on BBC...I was still a registrar then and was holed up in my hostel room with BBC tuned into the background...low-light of the reading lamp....I still remember that innings.

India need plenty more that a Patronus Charm! Who'll they spook with it...themselves? For they are their own Death-eaters and Dementors.

Soulberry said...

Looks like a 400 or just over target likely...wotsay CG? India have it in them?

Soulberry said...

CG, 243 and 7 wickets in hand...can India look Glory in the eye and not flich away?

Sachin...what does one say?

RP's fifer was wonderful.

Cricket Guru said...

Hi SB,

Sorry for not replying earlier.

Just as I began reading the final HP book on Saturday, they started beaming Star Cricket live and I was really torn between watching the match, reading the book and logging online to have a wonderful chat with you all on GVA.

As for the target, my heart says yes, but the head says no.

Our bowlers have brought the team back into this match and it would be sad to see the batters go down without a whimper

straight point said...

for all the mayhem of first day we should bow to our bowling attack, the way they have brought back us in the game not once but twice!! its for their bowling that we are still in the match which could have been over by now by all means...so i take a bow for our bowlers who are are carrying with them the “WORLD FAME” batting line-up…

its high time that our BIGGER THAN GAME stars starts delivering. if the collective experience of 50 years and around 40K runs produces such a batting display against almost second rung bowling attack i am afraid we are better served with youngsters who will brought at least hunger and purpose to batting if nothing else...DK being the case in point…

remember for these certain youvraj had to sit out and i dare say more youngsters will meet the same fate until unless the message is delivered to our seniors that you can go this much far on your past and better display some intent now…

specially for ST...its high time that he sort out how he wants to play from now on coz it is becoming increasingly painful to watch him dab, dribble and by the time he will retire it will erase all the name he has earned for himself in past…

BTW, when was the last time one remembers him playing match winning or saving performance specially in IInd innings...and yesterday was no different day...so we should not be disappointed at all as this has been the norm

Cricket Guru said...

Straightpoint,

Got to agree with everything you said. Could not have put it any better.

I would be interested in watching how SRT plays in next two tests, esp if he comes at 150/2 or thereabouts. If he screws up even then, I think it would (should) be boot for SRT, atleast temporary.

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