That was the kick in the rear I needed to actually get back to blogging. Thanks Rohan. Its been a long time Since I blogged and I think I put out 1 post in the last 3 months. I know, I could check the dates and confirm that but I am gonna trust my memory on that.
BTW Rohan, you were in Antigua for 5 days but I, Se7en days!!! I win.
Waking up at 8 in the morning to get ready and go to my first live cricket match, my head was still hurting from the previous night's debauchery! It was supposed to be India playing Australia except, The Indian Cricket team crapped the bed against Bangladesh in the first round of the tournament, and we had to put ourselves through the travesty also known as Bangladesh cricket. It had rained pretty good the previous night and the early news on the telly was that the start of the game has been delayed and this match will be a shortened one. Good and Bad. Good in that we won't have to spend too much time watching a mismatch, Bad in that, If India had made it, this would've been perfect - shortened game where they could've matched the Aussie firepower! Oh well!
We all got decked out in Indian colors (Obviously) and made our trip to Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground. We had to park our car nearly 1.5 miles away from the stadium and walk. Since we knew the game is gonna be delayed, we took our time getting there.
The stadium itself is very good-looking one and we got ourselves some food and beer and headed to our seats. After a little while, we walked down to the lawn area where you could just lie down and it was right at the boundary. There were a lot of Aussie fans around and surprisingly, a lot of Indian fans had made the trip as well even after India got booted out. Finally after couple of hours of waiting, it was announced that game would be 22-overs a side match. The two teams came out for the warm-ups and it was really neat that the Aussies warmed up closer to us. It was something to actually see Mattie Hayden in real life, Shaunt Tait bowl at blistering pace, Andrew Symonds going through his batting practice. This is what - in general parlance- is known as "Paisa Wasool". (If you wanna see all the pics, go to my facebook profile. if you don't have a facebook account, get one. Duh!). I am just gonna put this one really funny photo of Golu punching McGrath.
We had loads of fun in the stadium, the beer guy hooked us up. we met our Aussie neighbors, Garth and Sarah, there. We were holding the Indian Flag by the sides and running through the section of Aussie fans. Obviously there was a lot of good natured ribbing going on between us and Aussies. It was such a carnival atmosphere. Having had a lot of beers and not a lot to watch in terms of cricket action, helped!
Coming back to the match itself, Bangladesh made 106 in 22 overs and the Australia chased it down without loss of a wicket with Gilly scoring a 50. It was unreal watching him and Hayden go after the bowling. We got back to our apartment and made plans for the rest of the day. One funny moment from the match: During Bangladesh's batting, Ricky Ponting, the Australian Captain, was fielding at the boundary just a few yards away from us. Aditi and others started the, "Sachiiiiiiiiin, Sachin, kach kach kach" shouts. And I started "Oh Ricky! you're so fine" a la "Mickey" song by Toni Basil... It was priceless to see Ponting turn towards and give us a stare!!
We freshened up and made our way to St. John's Harbor looking for this bar-restaurant "The coast". We finally found it and got our dinner and few drinks in. We met some interesting people there, especially this two middle-aged Indians who live in the U.K. One of them apparently travels to all of India's overseas test matches. He showed us his itinerary for the world cup. He had booked flights, game tickets and hotels for all the matches that India were supposed to be in, all the way through to the finals. In fact he had gotten flight tickets for both the semifinals matches!! I was totally amazed by his commitment and craze for Indian cricket. We were exhausted by midnight and finally made our way back to the apartment for a deserved good night's sleep!