Saturday Cricket Club Blog

Saturday, April 29, 2006

A fumble here and a fumble there

Facile victory in the end against Jaguars. It should serve as a wake up call for our bowling attack. With the exception of Shankar and Ahmed none of us really bowled well. Fielding mistakes did not help in boosting the bowlers confidence as well. In all there were 4 dropped catches and countless fumbles.

After playing the game for so long, we can call ourselves seasoned veterans. But we tend to do forget the basics sometimes. You are your best judge. Think about what you can improve upon and if you are not sure seek someone's opinion. There are plenty of offensive/defensive gurus in our team.

On the positive side:
  • Shiv stepped up and played great. Play each ball as it comes, Shiv. No pressure on you. You know we have a solid middle order in case things don't go too well in the beginning.
  • The effort on the field was not missing. Shankar, Mayank and Naresh made spectacular efforts in trying to make difficult catches count. Kedar covered the leg side fence brilliantly and he and Madan showed that they can still throw accurately from the deep.
  • Finally, Viral continues to play well. He has vastly improved his game this year (the cracking lofted extra cover drive was a treat to watch).
Lets build up the momentum and the rest will fall in place.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Ode to a Star ...

I can't believe it. The last post on our blog is dated 12/18/2005 -- that is more than 4 months ago.

I thought I had some time to write. I chose to write about undoubtedly the most popular SCC member -- Madan Joshi, MJ, HoshI, Arjun of SCC as Ahmed termed it once.

There is another reason why I chose to write about it. The number of players that are turning up for the Practice Sessions is waning this season. So, when I went to the usual venue at around 7.45 AM after a wake-up call from the ever-ready Abhay, there were only 7 players who finally showed up by 8.30 AM. When I reached the ground the first question I ask Abhay is, "Madya Kuthey (Where is Madan?)" We had a good Practice Session.

I come home. Deepa asks me, "How many people were there?"

"Seven, Madya was not there", said I.

She was surprised as she knows him as a regular member of the squad. Apart from being a regular figure on the field since the inception of the Club, his stellar achievements have made him the most talked about player in the history of TCA, dare I say.

He has been a student of the game (Now that's a routine statement, but I really mean it). He built his reputation slowly but steadily since 2001. The initial years were definitely explosive and not valuing his precious wicket. Be it TD or Chirag or someone else, each and every one of them have been ruthlessly treated by his towering lofted shots. So many times have we relied on his shoulders to carry the burden of the mess we created in our batsmanship.

Sports critics of the TCA will write about his uncanny ability to dominate and at the same time meekly throwing wicket, at length. But the two of the best qualities I like in this pal of ours are as follows:

The frenzy with which he bats. The same frenzy you see when a world class surfer boards his surf amidst giant waves, when a maverick plays the tricks, when and how a true drunkard sips his wine. These forces can not be controlled by the so called thoughts of sanity of mortals. You could not tell a frenzied person to not pursue the passion. That person so drenched in such unfathomable joy of the moment that the calming words of team-mates fall on deaf ears. I have rarely seen such oblivion. Of course, when the wicket falls, the reality prevails, the head is held in palms of two hands -- but that hardly matters. The moment is lived in thorough richness. That's why I say -- Let him be himself. It is hard to tame a tiger.

The other unique thing is about bringing life to the game. The cheering while on field, comments full of wits, impeccable observations about the opposing batsmen, reasoning behind field placing, candid remarks about little mistakes of fellow team-mates that they thought went unnoticed :) and so on.

Hats off to a great star of SCC.