Monday, February 28, 2011

Cricket on Campus

Day before yesterday I witnessed yet another nail biter in the common room. It was an addition to the numerous amazing cricket moments which I have witnessed in my last few years on campus. Here is a brief account of three such cricketing moments  which I cherish the most.


It was my first year and I was in Krishna Bhawan. The first T20 world cup was going on and Inda was playing against England. The innings was reaching its completion and I decided to peek inside common room to see the score. I reached in the middle of this over where Yuvi had hit Broad for sixes in the first two balls of the over. There was a unique buzz in the common room. It was as if ever y one knew what were to happen. With Ravi Shastri screaming through his mouth piece and Flintoff trying all field arrangements, Yuvraj kept on hitting. By the time he had hit 4 sixes, everyone was standing on their chairs. The shouts from common room had forced the ever curious BITSian to leave his AOE/CS match, his lacha, his ghoting and his what-not to witness something unique. 

And before Yuvraj hit the last shot out of the park, the common room was full and people screaming at the top of their voices. It is an amazing experience to scream at the maximum possible volume and still be unable to  hear one’s own voice.


The T20 world cup in 2007 was crazy. For the first time we witnessed a super over. We thrashed the mighty aussies in the semis. And we braced ourselves for a faceoff with our arch rivals; Pakistan.
 I was doing Engineering Graphics in that semester. I had to miss the Australia match for the EG test the next day. The match was aired in the audi and it felt really cruel on IC’s part to have scheduled the test in the middle of the world cup. India won a sensational match. The final was on a weekday and was starting at around 6 in the evening. People started pouring inside audi and started ‘reserving’ seats for their wing/club/dept. There were people with empty water bottles, blue jersey, face paint (tricolor) etc. The atmosphere was, as commentator’s often put it, electric. India went in first with the bat. I don’t remember what happened in the innings. All I remember is that the match was evenly poised after the Indian innings.
The innings break came and none of us were ready to budge from our seats. It was the biggest mass mess bunk which I remember (although it was told later that the messes would remain open even after the match, but did we really care for food after the match?)
The match resumed and the balance tilted slightly towards India by the middle of the Pakistani innings. However, the danger was still lurking large. Misbah-ul-Haq was on crease. To give a little background, Misbah is the tragedy king of Pakistani cricket(at least during 2007). He would take Pakistan out of impossible situations and give them hope. And then he would kill that hope in the most merciless and trivial fashion possible.
He comes and shatters the Indian bowling attack by hitting Harbhajan for 3 sixes in an over and tilting the game in their favor. Before the end of last over, Pakistan requires 13 runs to win the cup. Joginder Sharma is given the ball. Joginder Sharma, the slow slow-medium pace bowler that Indian cricket team had discovered during that world cup, starts the historic over with a wide. On the second bowl of the over, Misbah hits a six. The equation reads 6 from 4 balls. Then comes the anti climax. Misbah tries the Dilscoop and finds Sreesanth waiting for a catch. We win.

The audi was screaming at the top of its voice. People started running out of the audi on to the roads. I also ran out. At distance we could hear firecrackers burning. I loved being on campus that day more than ever.


It was in my 3-2. That particular day we were having our Database Systems lab. By the time we entered the lab, Sachin had scored his century. I and Prashanth discuss the possibility of Sachin making a double century. For the initial few minutes we fulfilled the formalities of downloading the labsheets and opening SQL server. However, and were where our hearts lay. Sachin kept on making fun of the South African attack. In the lab, there was a visible restlessness. Everyone had their favorite cricket websites open in their browsers(multiple websites for some). It was as if people's cricketing intuition told them that this was no ordinary Sachin innings. By the end of 46th over Sachin was on 196. By now the lab lost all its respect. People were clapping for every single run that Sachin took. Some people even left the lab (on the pretext of going to the washroom) and went back to their bhawan common room. The less brave sat back and endured the most annoying cameo by an Indian batsman. Dhoni was treating the bowlers as if they were from an under-14 school squad and for the first time ever he was booed for doing that, coz on the other end, the little master was a little away from the historic double century. 

The final over came, Sachin took a single and became the first person ever to make a double century in One Day Internationals. People were clapping and silently screaming in the DBS lab. I was ecstatic.

Watching cricket in campus has been one of the best stress busters. The unique rivalry seen in the common rooms during IPL is worth mentioning. Will miss all this. 

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