The Day We Won The Cup

June 25. 1983.

Greatest day since independence. You bet.

India won the Prudential World Cup by beating the mighty West Indies.

For all you newbies, this Australia team has got nothing on the West Indies of 83. No other team in the modern era had a bowling attack like they did—sure other teams, at various times, had Waqar & Wasim, McGrath & Gillespie & Warne, Pollock & Donald.

But the West Indies firm of Roberts & Holding & Marshall & Garner was something else— four of the most accurate, fearsome gentlemen ever to have walked the cricket field. And all of them did it together on that day in mid summer, June 25 1983.

The batting was not too bad either.

Three of the greatest one day batsmen ever were in the West Indies team that day———Greenidge, Haynes and Viv Richards. Backed up by the mighty hitting Clive Lloyd, the steady Larry Gomes and the artistic and athletic keeper Dujon who was the best keeper-batsman before Gilchrist.

And yet they lost the biggest game of their collective lives.

They lost to India.

India…. which then looked about as threatening as Bangladesh does today. Kapil was the only world class one day player in the side. Gavaskar was a liability in ODIs, the bowling attack of Binny, Madan and Sandhu would give no opponents sleepless nights and the other players—well not much could be expected from them. Or so we thought.

When the World Cup began, there was no excitement in the country. We did not care about it and you could not blame us for that…. in 2 previous editions we had beaten only East Africa (even lost to Sri Lanka before they got Test status). I remember buying the pre-World cup “Sportsweek” (now defunct) and asking my father what chances we had. (I was 7 then)

My dad nodded mournfully

“Winning the cricket World cup is as much a pipedream as winning the football one.”

This time however things were a bit different. My dad did not notice it then and neither did many people—-but in retrospect it is evident now.

Just before the World Cup, India toured the West Indies. Needless to say, they were plastered. But it was not in vain. A 3 month tour playing against the world’s best opposition was exactly the right kind of preparation going into the cup.

In addition, two significant things happened on that tour.

Mohinder Amarnath rose from the ashes to become India’s leading batsman. Amarnath used to be known as a pathetic player of the short ball whose career was in jeopardy after he got hit on the head by Rodney Hogg.

After a layoff, he came back a changed man. He had stood tall among the ruins in the Pakistan series (where Imran and Safraz razed our batting) and then attained legendary status on this tour to West Indies.

The West Indian speed merchants peppered us with the short stuff. Gavaskar ducked. Gaekwad took it on his body. Amarnath hooked. The West Indians had never seen Indians hooking bouncers. The faster they came at Amarnath, the more vicious he hooked it……….and such was his dominance on that tour that both Imran and Marshall accepted that he was the best player of pace in the world.

The second significant event was that we actually won a ODI off the Windies. It was the last one—rather insignificant in terms of the series………but of great significance for what was to follow. At Berbice, Gavaskar finally got into the groove of one day cricket (forgetting his 36 over 60 overs) and Kapil blasted the West Indies bowling attack. A mere blip on Windies’ radar———–but at least we knew we could beat them.

Well not only was it possible to beat the West Indies, India made it two in two defeating them in the first match of the World Cup. And then, after a few wins and losses, it all came down to the match against Zimbabwe.

My dad had a small radio. When I turned it on, India were 15 for 4. Soon they were 17 for 5. I was deliberating whether to skip drawing school……but this did it. I trooped off with my paint brush and was ensconced on the cold floor along with scores of others, drawing “still life.” My mind however was anything but still.

There was the unmistakable drone of transistors coming from outside. That means people were still listening in. Soon the drone increased. More transistors/radios had come on. What could that mean ? Was India still “in the game”?

It was hot inside the room. And I desperately wanted to leave. But I had to wait to get picked up by Baba. And then the first sound of “chakka” (sixer) from someone next door. Soon others followed.

My heart was pounding….threatening to jump out of its socket into the paint bowl.

Baba where are you? I want to go home.

Baba came. A big smile on his face. Kapil was smashing Zimbabwe all over the place—-he was in a marauding mood. Going home, I caught the end of India’s batting on the radio.

India wrapped up the game in style with the commentators describing the fielding as brilliant.

India had made the turn——–cricket would henceforth be India’s national sport.

Semi final. I knew India would lose. I was sanguine. I also thought that if I thought India was going to win, God might punish me for my hubris and defeat us. And by God, did we need godly intervention to win against England.

India bowled first. The fielding was exceptional. The runs were choked and England made their mistakes.

Alan Lamb was run out by an exceptional bit of fielding, Gatting was bowled by a gem from Amarnath and Botham was castled by a brute of a delivery from Kirti Azad.

Then India came into bat. Also went out the lights—power cut ! Or what we used to call “load shedding”.

I have this problem. Whenever I get tense, I start shivering. So here in the month of June, on a hot Kolkata night with all power off, I was shaking. With tension.

You see I had maneuvered myself into a lose-lose situation. Long before Azhar and Jadeja, I had bet against my own team. I had a running bet with an uncle—if India makes it to the finals, I will treat him to a “Rajbhoga”. Which cost Re 1 in those days. Something I was not willing to give up since it constituted about 20% of my “personal stash”.

I wanted India to win. Desperately. And I also wanted to avoid losing my Re 1.

Yashpal Sharma flicks Bob Willis for a six. Sandeep Patil hammers Allot. The power comes back on for us to see Yashpal Sharma getting dismissed. But no further hiccups and Kapil races back to the pavilion after the winning run as he is engulfed by the teeming population.

I lose my Re 1. Which, I refuse to pay when uncle asks for it.

Then June 25 dawns. No more bets. No more debts. India vs West Indies.

Sunil Gavaskar. 5 feet and a few. Joel Garner. 7 feet and a few. Garner hustles in and hurls them from sky high and Sunny is all at sea. He is soon taken out of his misery. So are we.

Srikkanth, on the other hand, looks cool and composed. Well as cool and composed as he can look. Roberts is hooked over fine leg for six and then Sri gets on one knee and creams him through cover. Shot of the match. Twitches his nose, walks towards square leg. And then gets beaten by a beauty from Marshall and is trapped in front.

Amarnath has dropped anchor. Runs are difficult to come by. Holding goes wide of the crease, angles one in. Amarnath plays down the wrong line and his stumps go cartwheeling. My heart sinks.

With runs not coming, Yashpal Sharma loses the plot and gifts his wicket to the innocuous off spin of Larry Gomes. Kapil also holes out to deep square leg attempting a mighty heave. Then Doordarshan loses feed. Damn.

Back to the radio. Azad and Binny are blown away. India’s tail fights back. But my heart has turned to cinder. I knew India was going to lose but at least a fight was expected. This was abject surrender.

Everything is going according to their script. Their script. I almost feel like crying.

Power is back on for the Windies chase. Only good news, Llyod has pulled a hamstring. Fat chance of Lloyd batting though. Richards is enough.183 is nothing. Absolutely nothing.

And then it happens. Pure magic.

Gordon Greenidge, one of the world’s most technically correct batsman is at the crease. Sandhu runs in and bowled a seemingly innocuous outswinger. 183 to get…60 overs. Plenty of time. So Greenidge reads the outswinger and shoulders arms to let it go.

Nothing wrong in that. But the ball is charmed—- the collective will of so many Indians makes it change its line. Late…. very late it swings in ever so slightly and clips Greenidge’s off stump.

Greenidge stands there with his bat raised—incomprehending, incredulous. Sandhu is rushing towards keeper Kirmani clenching his fist. India has drawn blood.

The Man comes in. Chewing gum, twirling bat, utter disdain for the opposition. Madan Lal is dismissed from his presence with a swipe to square leg. Binny (India’s version of JLo—if you have seen him you know what I mean) is thrashed through cover. And then Doordarshan loses transmission again.

“A good thing” my mother says. It is torture watching India lose. Now we can all go back to our respective lives.

But the radio is on. My dad mutters to himself—“Richards has got to go”.

However it is Haynes who goes, unable to keep a drive down off Madan Lal. The wrong guy….the wrong guy….we need Richards.

The fall of Haynes has no effect on the Man. Richards is no mood to step off the center stage—-determined to finish off the match himself and repeat his murderous innings against England in the 1979 World Cup. Runs flow from his bat with precise inevitability.

” He is out. Gone.”

The commentary drowns out amidst the thunderous applause. It’s true. Viv IS out and Madan has scalped him. Richard’s overconfidence has done him in. He bludgeons Madan Lal uppishly and Kapil Dev, runs back and takes the most significant catch in Indian cricketing history. Crowd goes silent and then the Indians erupt.

But we all saw that later. For now, we are simply jumping up and down with joy. We are in with a chance.

Clive Llyod is not being able to play his normal flowing game and Gomes has gone into a shell.
Binny takes out Larry Gomes with a late moving outswinger.

And then “Big Cat” Lloyd, strung by a hamstring, plays a nothing shot and is skinned by Kapil at cover.

I run around the room in the unquestioning glee of childhood………..we have won, we have won. My father tells me to calm down……………half of the side still remains. But yes, we are in with a chance.

Now we are cursing Doordarshan. Doordarshan obliges by restoring live feed.

Bacchus is scratchy. Dujon looks solid but watchful.

Srikkanth hits the stumps on a direct throw. The Indians go up in appeal. The umpire does not oblige. Srikkanth runs around like his pants are on fire.

My mother opines that it is better luck when there is no live feed. Maybe she wants us to just have our food but there is logic in what she says. As long as I was watching the game on TV, India kept losing wickets. When the feed went off, India’s batting fought back. And now also just after the feed is back on, things have stalemated.

Sandhu comes back in and bowls one wide of off stump. Bacchus is no Richards but tries to be. He swings hard hoping to send the ball screaming to the fence. It takes the edge and Kirmani dives full tilt to his right and brings off a blinder.

India’s problems have always been in getting rid of the tail. How many times has it happened that we get rid of the main players and then the fringe guys come and bite us on our bum?

Marshall, who was a fairly decent bat, digs in. Dujon works the ball away into the gaps. No more of the frenetic, disdainful heave-ho of the top batters——Dujon and Marshall have gone over to Plan B. The Indian fielding is tight, Binny beats Marshall all ends up. But the edges are not coming.

Kapil is striding like a wounded tiger—-the team is pumped up.

I am shaking like crazy. Please let us not lose this from this state….please God.

God answers. Mohinder Amarnath is called into bowl. He lopes in, the only bowler in the world who decelerates as he comes to the bowling crease. A loosener, gently going down off. Dujon takes an exaggerated front foot movement and seeing the line of the ball raises his bat.

And as he raises it, the ball miraculously takes the inside edge of his bat, comes back, bounces once in front of the stumps and hits it !

Dujon slaps the ground in digust and I am airborne with joy.

Amarnath is not done. He induces Marshall’s edge and Gavaskar clutches onto the ball for dear life.

Kapil brings himself back on. A lot of overs still left. This is a gamble.

Andy Roberts. Shuffling across he is pinned to the crease by a Kapil inswinger. The finger goes up. Kapil is growling now and the Indians are all over the place.

Andy Roberts wends his way back accompanied by a fat white man who keeps on lecturing him. It is still a wonder to me why he did not smack the guy then and there.

Garner and Holding hold on. They are not scoring runs but they are not getting out either.

Amarnath bowls. Holding launches into a wild swipe. It misses, strikes him a bit high on the pad. Who cares? The umpire’s finger is up, Holding looks dejected. Amarnath has started running towards the pavillion.

The Indian contingent that was in the dressing room is rushing onto the ground. The TV flashes ” India has won the World Cup”. Kapil is smiling from ear to ear.

The Goliath has fallen. David has won the World Cup.

Many years have passed by since then.

I have since become an atheist. I don’t know what to believe or trust any more.

But there is one thing I do believe in and that is in miracles.

Because I saw one myself. On June 25, 1983.

62 thoughts on “The Day We Won The Cup

  1. Very nice tribute but disagree strongly with “this Australia team has got nothing on the West Indies of 83” and especially with “India…. which then looked about as threatening as Bangladesh does today”. Of course, disagreement is imperative if you’re a cricket-obsesser.

    Good to see a first-person account though. I wasn’t into cricket at all back in 1983 and only one person in my house (an elderly uncle) was remotely interested in the game. So I entirely missed the sense that something special had happened.

  2. Wow! Never have I read a first person account of THAT MATCH! And by the way, if I ever own a newspaper, will you be my chief cricket writer? That was brilliant… I almost jumped with that last wicket…

    1. Greatbong! I love reading your posts. They’re very engaging, and true to their nature,this one kept me hooked till the very end too .
      Gotta say, you have an eidetic memory. For a boy of 7 to have remembered exactly when the Doordarshan feed went off and resumed, and the exact scores of the India Vs Zimbabwe match, before Kapil wreaked havoc, man, that is something. For a boy of this years to remember such minute details many years down the line, that is extraordinary.

  3. Very nice post..You made me feel like… watching that cricket match!! Fantastic!!

  4. Thank you all ! And SD I would love to be the chief cricket writer of your newspaper…….:-)..muchos gracias.

  5. GreatBong,

    This is one of the best pieces of sports writing I have come across. Thank you for refreshing my memories – I watched the match alone because my grandparents went to sleep, when the last wicket fell I went out on the balcony to share my joy and found the whole street celebrating.

    Just two points where I differ with you. Jai Arjun has raised the first one. The other – Sandhu’s inswinger to dismiss Greenidge did not come in a little way, it bloomin’ well curved in like a boomerang! Twenty years later he was asked on TV how he bowled that ball and he smiled and said “Bas, ho gaya”.


  6. I was seven too. I followed the match too. I remember India winning, the World Cup in Kapil’s hands and Srikanth lighting up one smoke during the presentation ceremony. But that was all I could remember.
    If only I had the memory and the eloquence that you possess, this is how I would have imagined it to have happened. But my dad would have played your mom’s role and vice versa.
    Great work. Needs to be treasured along with the other one that I came across.

  7. You really brought back memories… I do not care a lot for cricket now.. but 1983 was magical.I was 19, just out of college, broke, hungry,jobless and hopelss. But that night nothing mattered… just like you, I watched and listened to the game and was ecstatic when India won. I laughed and cried at the same time…Mohinder Amarnath was my hero for the longest time. Even today I can feel the chills in my spine when i think about it. Perhaps it was the whole situation… me being down in the dumps and that whole experience of feeling hopeful again… The only other time I felt that way was when Yankees won the World Series in 1996.

  8. Nice account of this wonderful event I must admit. Totally emotional moments while reading (rather recreating) it.

  9. greatbong…

    u are great!!… probably the greatest bong!!

    awesome… ur writing is as funny as the great douglas adams

    keep going….

  10. Oh ! this was truly one of India’s turning point in cricket. We did’nt have telly in our city those days – but I remember my uncles going all the way to Goa to watch the match.

  11. I’m not doubting you or anything but can you really remember things from 23 years ago? Anyway even if you made up parts of it 😀 ……still it’s a lovely piece of writing.
    PS: no offense man……you might have a diary or something…just curious.

  12. @Rajesh, Anchal, Nishit: Thank you…

    @Rajeev: Why dont you care for cricket anymore? I dont think I can ever reach that stage.

    @Bablu: So it was.

    @Amoeba: No I dont have a diary. And I didnt make up any part of it—-I do have a phenomenal memory for things I like and they usually leave an indellible imperssion on me. Especially June 25, 1983 because that day was about something much more than cricket.

  13. The best part about this write-up was that I could identify with the emotions that were probably in the air at that time. In fact I actually felt the whole chain of events taking place, all inside my head. Don’t know whom to attribute it to: the power of imagination, your emotive and sumptuous style of writing or the insane and overwhelming sentiments that ‘THE Indian Cricket Victory’ evokes.
    That was one day which no Indian Sportsman should ever forget.

  14. Tremendous account greatbong….i could almost feel it happening in front of my eyes…

  15. Excellent post dude, I am excited just by reading the post. I wish India repeats this in West indies.

  16. I’m emotionally charged and feel so good, happy and proud after reading this post. Was 7 too then but didn’t know much about cricket accept that my uncles were jumping late in the night and hugging each other. Great narration dude perhaps u shud take over from boycotts,blofelds etc.

  17. You excel at word pictures! it was like seeing the match live………… Ever thought of Online Commentary?

  18. I was born in 1983. But i felt, from reading this post, as though i was there with you. Watching, and listening, India win. Great post

  19. Just one clarification — even though he did seem to grab a stump, Jimmy Amarnath actually never got hold of it, and ran empty-handed to the pavilion. Another lingering memory is the giant champagne bottle Jimmy got as man of series.

  20. feeling warm and fuzzy now. great post. read the others too. linking u. 🙂

  21. It was a great narration of the real story . I felt like watching the match live through reading the post .

  22. Felt like being there…thanks for reliving it for me….

    “Binny (India’s version of JLo—if you have seen him you know what I mean)” — classic

  23. Ranjan Chakravarty September 16, 2006 — 4:24 pm

    Guys, ave you ever thought of a double century that you can score for someone else? Score it for Himesh! Himesh 200!

  24. great piece Sir. what an advertisement for sports journalism.

  25. Boss,

    I never saw that match, nor heard it on radio. This is the closest I have been to that. Ever.

    BTW, I tuned in late – just a couple of days back. To your blog. And to the ultimate religion – Mithunism.

    You rock.

  26. Does anybody remember a tall black guy in a canary yellow suit, lying on the ground face down, weeping after the game ended?

  27. I was almost 8 back then. It was the Summer Holidays and I was spending my “chhuTi” in my Mamar bari. It was one of the greatest evenings of my life with my grand parents (yes even my grandmother watched cricket that day)and my Mama. I am not sure if I really understood the import of the moment, but I knew that this moment will be etched in my memory for ever. I knew this was special.My grandfather, who was a retired DIG officer had witnessed a lot of historic events in his lifetime (e.g. Independance and the 3 wars)yet he had described June 25th as a Historic day for India. He passed away in 1996, but reading your account is bringing back a lot of happy memories from my childhood. Thank you!

  28. Very well written article … Better than those they write on cricinfo.

  29. a clarification – Amarnath had not grabbed hold of a stump.

    In fact in his run to the pavillion, he missed it entirely. And he didnt have a second chance.


  30. I got some clips of the final here

  31. whoa!
    am at my desk @ work while india is playing a crucial match against sri lanka right now…

    and am going to ask my junta to read this account… its amazing … !!

  32. I was 13 then. And I too remember each detail of that match (no doubt aided by me and my brother –then 11 — discussing each and every aspect of it even now). I have not felt anything as magical as that match since then. We took the TV out to the courtyard in the middle of our house and a bunch of us kids sat clutching hands in anxiety.
    And yes, my maa was as nervous as we were. -:)
    Thank you for recreating the magic. And I can see from the comments that there were a bunch of youngsters for whom June 25, 1983 was a defining moment.

    Would like to add a funny post script.
    Our cousin — all of 4 then — had no idea of of replays on TV. (We lived in small town Bhubaneswar and TV had just made an appearance during 1981 there.) He was curious as to why India and West Indies were playing the match again. Ruthless and heartless that we older ones were, we told him nobody believed that India had won the game and so, India could not take the cup back home unless they played exactly like they did in the finals! Needless to say, he was glued to the TV during the re-telecast, getting more fraught and anxious by the minute.

  33. GB,

    I am responding to your question from Mar 10, 2006 🙂 better late than never right?
    Somehow I just can’t seem to enjoy the game played by the money grubbing fat cats, the cricketers have become. back in those days, Vishwanath, Kapil and the likes played the game which they really loved. Today it is so commercialized…….. like everything else……also the gimmicks like warpaint on face ( it looks ugly on brown dudes…..someone should introduce them to SPF 45 sunblocks), sledging( cricket is a gentleman’s game), illegal gambling etc put me off completely. I know it is the sign of the times but i guess I am just old school. On the other hand what I enjoy watching is professional baseball, football ( go Bears!)and basketball. The difference is I did not grow up with any of this, so I can tolerate all the BS thart goes on with that.

    In short, I guess I relate cricket to being a kid, not having too much of anything, struggling for survival etc.

  34. I agree with Cliff on what has happened with Cricket. While as a kid I would be glued to the TV, these days I do not even know when we are playing. I haven’t seen a full cricket match in years. So what happened in between? They started playing cricket as a game for money and not a sport. And they are playing so frequently that it is hard to say who beat whom.
    Or maybe the charisma is no longer in the players but in the money. And since I shun bad money, I also shun cricket.

  35. @ Shab
    “Does anybody remember a tall black guy in a canary yellow suit, lying on the ground face down, weeping after the game ended?”

    I remember the guy. Can’t picture the canary suit, but seem to recall he had a Rasta cap on.

    Though I was very young then, the euphoria of Kolkata is etched in my mind. Our street exploded in delirium. People started beating kettledrums (cooking pots !!), some women blew conches, we all rushed out on the streets embracing total strangers (kolakuli) in sheer joy. There were 20 people in our sitting room that day.

    I also remember Gary Sobers apologising on TV; after the qrtr finals, he’d warned England not to get too complacent as they’d lose to Windies in the final (England was meeting India in the semis … Sobers had just taken India’s defeat to England as certain !!)

    Times have achanged. A single victory no longer carries the same display of exultation. India is prospering economically, gaining recognition for it’s contribution to world affairs, past and present. Folk were a lot more simple and naiive back then. Yet I’d gladly trade all the largesse of the present, with its blue-ray & LCD & broadband, to be back just once more in that innocent dawn of boyhood.

  36. You Indians are so cute…24 years on from the last World Cup you guys still remember it….keep up the good love…and keep the money flowing into Cricket..

    From the looks of it, my beautiful Sri Lanka seems to run completely on cricket remittances…

    BONG…do an article on 1996 no..its not fair that only Indians can write well..and u write only about ur own wins…pls pls with a that white bengali sweet on top…

  37. I know that was a good read because I don’t know fuck all about cricket but I still enjoyed reading your article. I wish you were into MMA

  38. gb,
    thanks. this was just awesome. reminded me of back when i used to love the indian team. kapil really rocked at that time, did he not. i dont have your talent for remembering all the details so well, so was really glad to read this one.

  39. Absolutely fantastic post GB! I came by through the link you put in the 20-20 article.

  40. I was not born in ’83..but this piece brought back memories of 14th March 2001. My class 10th boards were on. Never had cable TV at home, so was listening to the commentary on the radio. I sat in that one position with my history book like Dada was sitting in the pavillion with the towel wrapped around his shoulders(Radio commentator mentioned this every half an hour) for the whole 7 hours. Jumped in joy when Dravid reached his 100.
    Had my bath at 5 in the evening when the day got over 🙂
    That for me is the greatest day in Indian cricket.
    Thanks for bringing back those images.

  41. Wonderful!! Wonderful.!!

  42. Boy oh boy… Exhilarating. That’s all I can say. It’s 9 PM here. I’m in cubicle. Almost all have left for the day. And the hairs on my neck is standing. We are now used to read cricket commentry in cricinfo. But this is just out-of-the-world. I can just picture myself, sitting with you in that room in Calcutta, listening to radio. Jumping up and cursing when the ball just misses the bat. Praying. Touching hand to my forehead. I can see it all. And I wasn’t even born at that time. 🙂
    Thanks GB. You made me see that day. Thanks again.

  43. I sometimes wonder if it is a good thing that we are not the victory machine that Australia is (or maybe I’m just trying to look at the brighter side of things). For one, these victories bring unprecedented joy to all of us – workers, porters, cleaners, mechanics, managers, secretaries, politicians, actors, everybody! – and in those moments we tend to forget everything else and just bask in that moment, that one moment in which our boys prove that they are worth it … I wasn’t even born at the time of the 83 finals … but here are a few moments I can recall in the past few years which have brought such joy:

    1. India Pakistan World Cup 1996 — Ajay Jadeja taking on Waqar Younis, and Venky returning Saqlain’s slap to him by uprooting his middle stump. This match holds the fondest memories for me …

    2. Sachin Tendulkar’s back to back hundreds in Sharjah vs Australia. He whipped Shane’s ass and they all cried like babies. Brahma, Vishnu, Mahesh and Sachin. ’nuff said!

    3. VVS Laxman’s trial by fire, 281 against Aussies.

    4. Rahul Dravid, 233 and 71 n.o. to hand us a famous victory at Adelaide, 2003. I cried. Shouldn’t forget the defiant bowling of Agarkar; 6/32 which made it possible.

    5. Sehwag crowned King of Multan. First triple by an Indian and our first victory in Pakistan!

    6. Javagal Srinath, the uncelebrated great, taking 6/21 on a dry pitch against South Africa. I was too young to understand the impact of that spell then.

    7. Anil Kumble, 1999, 10 wkts vs Pakistan. Need say more?

    8. India vs England, Headingley, 2002. Saurav Da hitting 128 with three of the most towering sixes ever, against England and on the way India won that match emphatically thus squaring the series. If that wasn’t an inspiring captain then who was?

    9. Mohd Kaif and Yuvraj Singh, Natwest Series finals, 2002. Everyone knows this match …

    10. Ishant Sharma rattling Ricky Ponting in Australia, 2007-08, back to back test matches. If it wasn’t for that bad umpiring that series was ours.

    A victory machine can’t bring you such joy, can it? Coz you would get used to winning all the time …

  44. arnab-da,
    you’ve come out with so many posts of such high quality that it’s difficult to pin-point any and say which are the best… but this one would surely make the list, especially for a cricket fan.

    this is just to say that i came across an article by ashok malik on cricinfo on the same topic and left a link to this article in a comment… hope you don’t mind!

  45. stupid article,whats the fuss of winning cup and 83 and aus has won 4 world cups and won it very convincingly and not like India who were underdogs and just one it one find day.

    there was no pressure on india,even if they lost it was okay but AUS had immense pressure of retaining cups and they did it successfully..

    i would suggest the writer to come out of fantacy and start looking ahead . there is no point getting so emotional over old victories..look today and the future

    USA cant start celebrating today for
    man of the moon
    man in space
    first computer
    and list is endless

    and its a shame today India has only one good thing to celebrate after independence..

  46. Hey GB…

    for a change i read this today…..frankly i am tired of this 26.11 aftermath BS….everyone in India here is into blunt tokenism of candle-light-protest heavily….losing the perspective & the plot….
    i was born that year & as Jung said i kind of carried it on in my “collective subsconscious”… was just thrilled to find your post on The Day The Earth Stood Still ..or rather India…with disbelief at its own children bringing moon on earth…yes it (the event) was & is so important that such heady hyperboles are kind of expected…….your post has a touch of “magical realism” ….i got into trance while reading…..fantastic memory you’ve…& some lines are like epitome of your pithy crackling observations:

    “Winning the cricket World cup is as much a pipedream as winning the football one.
    “the collective will of so many Indians makes it change its line.”
    “Binny (India’s version of JLo)”……was too good…

    keep writing such gems! Kudos once again!!

    ……..miracles do happen…… 🙂

  47. Brilliant… mesmerizing… and whats amazing is how clearly it is all etched in your mind… Hats off
    p s “Long before Azhar and Jadeja, I had bet against my own team” … hahahaha too much !!!

  48. I know its been about 5 years since you wrote this and i just read it; but i’ll be damned if i still don’t state that from my total disinterest in cricket (was that blasphemous? :)) to actually going on to finding and downloading clips/scenes/history/trivia/a lot more on that match and then reading on and generally getting a lot more interested in cricket, this bloody piece of piece of writing made me a cricket fanboy 😛 Sorry, could not resist that. Absolutely brilliant piece.

  49. Fantastic…Wonderful..Wow 🙂

  50. Hope we get a similar blog from you soon enough, Arnab :).

  51. Best commentary I have ever read. Excellent post.

  52. Even I was 7 then but remember it vaguely, you have picture perfect memory. My only memory is that my older friends in the colony were very excited about the world cup and our win

  53. Curious Observer June 25, 2018 — 3:16 pm

    Excellent post. Made my day.

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