World Cup 2011 Memories

This day last year – we experienced the ultimate high of our cricketing fandom. I have no memories of the ’83 WC win. 28 years is a long wait, an entire generation grew up during that time and entered their 30s awaiting the elusive WC win. We only had the 2003 WC final to crow about.  And then 2Apr, 2011 happened.

I knew from the time that world cup finals were announced that I was going to be there to witness the finals irrespective of who would play in the finals.  As we were boarding the Mumbai flight from Dubai on 31st night, I told my husband  ”It’s the World Cup finals, my team is playing, it is at my favourite place Wankhede in my favourite city Mumbai; if we win this I think I’m okay to die“.

When MSD hit that six, Wankhede went into a frenzy – we were lucky to witness it. The stadium did not stop singing Vande Mataram , firecrackers did not stop bursting, and when the team carried Sachin on their shoulders – the whole stadium – the 33000 of them did not stop shouting “Sacchinnn Sacchinnn Saccchiiinnn” for long.

India was in a state of never before experienced euphoria – so was Silicon Valley, London, Toronto, Sydney, Dubai, New York. My friend ZenRooster shared this awesome video he shot at his workplace in USA

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Worldwide MS Dhoni’s 6 brought the broadest smile to the faces of 1.2 Bn Indians that you will ever see.

I’m attempting to relive those memories through video clippings we took on our Nokia E71 and my facebook statuses and notes and some tweets.

2 Apr, 2011 – History was made, history was witnessed. Revisit it through my eyes.

 The Start of the World Cup

None of my friends except ZenRooster and NM believed that we would win the world cup from day 1 of the tournament. I had a gut feel we would make it this time – it just seemed so right.

First match Vs Bangladesh – Feb 19 

Go India – feeling nervous – so need to get this one right to wipe out the ghosts of 2007

When MSD lost the toss:

Dear MSD you do realize that someday you need to call it right :( You are sending the probability principles for a real toss.

After the India-England Tie

Cannot help but think that Eng seemed to have done worse than India – if you can’t be inspired and win after that stunning knock from your captain ; I dunno what can inspire you folks! Yes officially declare that am a huge Strauss fan – still cannot get over that knock! What an innings! Made me forget Sachin got a 100 too – speaks volumes of the impact Strauss’ knock had!

On the famous Ireland win over England

If you missed Ireland’s win today against the big Eng boys chasing 328 after being 111/5 and did not see Kevin O’ Brien’s 113 off 62 balls – you should go cry . What a freaking awesome match and what an in innings!!! 2 marvelous knocks in 2 days – am bowled over. Not gonna recover for a long time :) )

My two cents on those two knocks here

Loss to SA in the league

Sachin Tendulkar looks determined to win the cup – the rest 10 equally determined to mess it up! Forget Nehra – first someone explain to me the loss of 9 wickets for 29 runs in the last 10 overs! That for me ruined the match.

On India’s batting collapses during league matches

Dear Team India, I defend you everytime saying that you have a SPINE, but looks like you have developed a SLIP DISC problem and those lower vertebrae need some fixing ASAP!

When speculating the knock-out stage competitors

Revenge of #1996 or Revenge of #2003; India tell me what #youprefer ? #cwc2011

On Australia’s loss to Pakistan in Group A league stage

Life has come a full circle for Aus in the WC. Lost to #Pak in 1999 in the league & have ended their winning streak at the hands of #Pak

The Best match of the tournament: India-Australia Quarter Final Ahmedabad

On the eve of the match

Notes to Self: 1. Do not hype up tomorrow’s match. 2. Be calm in Office, on Facebook and on Twitter. 3. Do not deride people (especially ecstatic neighbors) who will scoff at the Men in Blue 4. Count to 10 before hurling abuses at anyone 5. Remember you love your work equally now – try to focus for those 9 hours in office so that you can get home in time for the 2nd innings.

I had acidity bouts in the morning, I could feel my stomach churning. So to calm the nerves I penned this short note.

Dear Team India,

Hope you all slept well and told the following to yourselves: 
MSD: must win toss, must bat first 
SRT : Need to score 90 today and on Wednesday – 100th 100 will be reserved for my homeground Mumbai. Owe them one 
ZAK: Must take revenge for #2003 thrashing 
HSP: Must resort to turbanator 2001 avatar 
YUVI: Need to win Man of the Series, for that need to ensure we hold the trophy on 2Apr 
VIRU:Need to fix that average of 22 Vs Aus today – am due for runs – need to deliver before Pup and Punter today 
Middle order : Must last 300 balls 
Bowlers : Must defend 14 runs off last over 
Entire Team: Need to reverse defeat trend against Aus in WC since 1992. Today 
Today is the day – go seal it!!!!

End of Aus innings:

Dear Team India just because Ponting did a #2003 repeat you are not obliged to return the favor.

India’s mini collapse  - Gambhir’s run outs/Kohli/ Dhoni out

WTF TEAM INDIA – You making me look like a complete idiot:-( For the first time in 5 weeks I’m losing hope – Kohli you getting out off a full toss and you Gauti for that mind-numbing idiotic display are responsible for it! :-(

Cannot find the God damn hammer when I need it – NEED TO HAMMER GAMBHIR!!! NOWWWWW

Towards the end

Ok confession – I have absolutely admired Bret Lee since his debut – have you seen the way he has fielded today and that injury brought a tear to my eye! :-(

Yuvraj I take back all my words:-) Raina Thank you!!!! GAUTI you you …damn you!!!! and GOD – Mumbai Awaits you!!!!!

South Africa’s loss to NZ in the quarters

I Choke You Choke We All Choke - SA get that as your tagline – it is freaking apt!!!

Before beginning of semis

2 out of 3 predictions true: Ind-Pak semifinal, WI/NZ upset. Come on Eng get me that 100%. Go on!

On SL making it to the finals:

OMG 50% boredom guaranteed on Saturday! Sigh dear Team India can you ensure that it does not amount to 100%

Mar 30: Pak Vs India – Semi Final, Mohali

Eve of the match

Dear Indian Media – please stop the circus around tomorrow’s match. You will really achieve the impossible – kill my interest in the game altogether!

In the morning 

What is wrong with me today – still no nerves ! Had a bit of acidity bout in the morning and I was glad that I was getting tensed but nothing after that – I’m terribly calm today and focussing fine at work!

When Younis Khan- Misbah were going strong during Pak chase

Dear Team India, am dying a slow death. Please find the Harry Potter amongst you who can get me the Elixir of Life!

Dear Team India doesn’t the thought of inflicting a SL-Pak WC final at Mumbai on your fans make you shudder? Motivation enough, right get going now!

When we won

WANKHEDE HERE WE COME….. And by we I don’t mean Team India Alone! Tryst with Destiny Beckons!

On the eve of the WC final

If you are going to play the cynic tomorrow – please refrain from commenting on my status or posting on my wall! I don’t need the negativity – you can keep all of it!

Checklist for tomorrow: Tickets, Tricolor Dupatta, 2 Large India Flags, The Indian Team Jersey! Next 18 hours – only restlessness!!!!

On the morning of April 2 before we headed out to the stadium

THIS IS IT…..You and I – Believe! GO INDIA!!!!

At the Stadium

The teams enter before the national anthem

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The national anthem captured by @abhishekumar

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Team India takes ground

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These cheers were heard non-stop for the entire duration of the match

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AFTER WE WON

Interviews

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Victory Laps

Young guns carry Sachin on their shoulders

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We stalled the great West Indies Machine in 1983 and ended The Australian Era in 2011 at the WC. Now does it put our achievement in perspective?

Viv Richards will be such a happy man – no longer reruns of his catch held by Kapil Dev- Now only Dhoni’s 6:-)

Status message from my friend SK: “For all regional biased parties of maharashtra – match in mumbai, delhi batsmen scoring there, captain from ranchi,bowler a muslim, dedicating it to a marathi manoos and carrying him on their shoulders ! get a freaking clue :)

To my best buddy who had written to me: Good luck seeing Sanga lift the cup, I replied after the win:

My belief won, your cynicism lost – go choke on it :-)

And more importantly what I felt at 22:49 IST 2 Apr,2011

Today I witnessed History but more importantly I witnessed what belief and faith can achieve. The memory will last a lifetime! THANK YOU TEAM INDIA!!!

And finally, to summarize those memories of 6 weeks: here is the note I wrote for all my friends who tolerated my constant updates on Facebook. A friend left me a message the moment India lifted the cup - her words will stay with me for long.

India has won the world cup and you – my crazy wonderful friends are posting on my wall/commenting on my status like I had something to do with the victory:-) So thank you for tolerating my madness, for loving it, for missing my match updates and status, for eagerly waiting for my post on my experience yesterday. I will write – I have to.

The Indian Team may not even know I exist – but you all have made me feel like Sachin must be feeling right now. World cup win after 21 years of playing – me eagerly waiting for a WC win after 19 years of watching the game:-)

The Indian Team made it special – and you all made it doubly special for me! So thank you all and thank you Facebook – I wouldn’t have cherished and loved this moment if it wasn’t for you folks – all of you – the eternal optimists and the irritating cynics.

I cannot end this note without sharing a wonderful message I saw first when I logged onto Facebook after returning from the match – the euphoria around me was mind-boggling and nothing had sunk in. I read this message from a lady I’ve known for a very short time and whom I admire immensely. Thank you VS – I’ve never received such a lovely message praising my cricket fandom – this will be going in my cricket collection. This little note of yours will stay in memory forever to go along with India’s World Cup win yesterday.

“Minal, I dedicate this win to you! To your passion, to your perseverence, to your fulltoos faith, to your sleepless nights, to your deep breathing, to your no-cynics please warning, to your undiluted love for cricket! Congratulations and give us all the gloss of the magic if you manage to break away from Wankhede!”