Saturday, April 9, 2011

We are the Champions

India won the World Cup. We are the Champions. I cannot write much. Its a very proud feeling. I feel lucky to have witnessed the moment. The boys in blue did us proud. A billion dreams came true, a billion prayers were answered. Indians all over the world rejoiced, the country celebrated and partied like never before. Scenes like this were in every corner of the country. What a night it was! Well played India. Shabbashhh Shabbashhh. Indiaaaa!! India!!!!

The victory did not come easy. We fought for it, and deserved to be the best team in the competition. We beat the arrogant defending champions Australia in the quarter finals, won a battle against our arch rivals Pakistan in the semi finals, and beat the competitive Sri Lankans in the finals. The best thing was it was not one or two individuals who carried us through each game. Everyone played their part and raised their hand to be counted when it mattered.

Sehwag gave us blistering starts in most games. Too sad he could not capitalize on those starts. But then, thats Viru for you. Sachin was one of the top scorers in the tournament. Gambhir and Kohli played important knocks in the finals when the tide was against us. Yuvraj had a dream run in the tournament,both with bat and ball. Raina played a useful and composed knock in the quarters. More than that, he saved at least 15 runs each game with his fielding. Dhoni,captain cool, saved his best for the last. Not having scored much till the finals, he played a captain's knock in the finals, and what a knock it was. Zaheer was the go-to man for India every game. Each time we needed a wicket-new ball.old ball,power play,middle overs-you name it, he was brought on and responded with a wicket each time. Bhajji getting rid of Umar Akmal was, I feel, the turning point of the quarter final game. Bhajji was always giving his 100%, even though he was off-color. Munaf- THE Munaf- was the unsung hero. Quietly bowling his quota without giving much most of the times. The likes of Yusuf, Nehra, Chawla and Sreesanth were as important to the team, irrespective of their under performing. We need people running on to the field with drinks and messages :) .

And all of this would not have been possible without the calming influence of Gary Kirsten and his support staff in the background. I really feel he deserves more credit than he has got. Thank you Gary. You would be leaving us after the world cup. Wishing you all the best with whatever you decide to do in the future.

Special mention of Sachin. This was probably his last world cup. Everyone wanted to win it for him, do it for him. The glee and the joy in his eyes after winning was priceless. It was not a fairy tale ending, with him scoring his 100th 100 in the world cup finals. But then,he will do it another day. Kohli summed up the feeling of billions with his words: "He has carried the burden of the nation for 21 years, it is time we carry him". The world cup medal, which was missing from his collection, now has a place in a billion hearts.

I have seen this Youtube clip maybe a hundred times, and I still am not tired of watching it. I can watch it over and over again.