Wednesday, August 01, 2007

31st July: Magic Day

So many Days abound now-a-Days, why not one for magic? I propose 31st July to be christened "Magic Day".

I believe I have enough reason backing my demand. For starters it is the birthday of Harry Potter. That one's contrived, for it is also the birthday of JK Rowling, the creator of Harry Potter's magic.

31st July is also the birthday of reputed Indian magician, P C Sorcar Junior.

Not enough magic still? Well today is also the birthday, or 'Discovery day', of a country called Trinidad.

Apparently Columbus sighted the land on this day of 1498 AD. 501 significant years later a Wizard Prince from this land would choose to make one glorious March afternoon his own and conjure up arguably the greatest 4th innings batsmanship ever seen in a future ball game that would be worshipped like religion in the land Columbus intended to set foot on - India.

Here's a report from a newspaper from the Wizard's land.

I was fortunate to be in front of live television that night (in India). I remember Windies having lost 8 wickets with 60 runs remaining. That recall was confirmed by cricinfo's ball-by-ball commentary. West Indies were 8 down in the 5th ball of the 101st over, having lost 3 wickets in the previous 14 runs. At that point they were still 60 runs adrift of a win with Curtly Ambrose approaching the crease with a bat and only Courtney Walsh to follow.

Curtly Ambrose with a ball in hand was a perennially intimidating sight for batsmen taking strike. In those twilight years of the giant bowler's career, an Ambrose with a bat in hand was no less frightening a sight for batsmen at the non striker's end. I recall Lara's exceptional strike manipulation during that phase of play. I check up on that with the cricinfo commentary.

I find out that in all 19 overs and 2 balls were bowled by Australia after the fall of 8th wicket till Lara completed the surreal win with a cover driven boundary off Gillespie. In that period the West Indian captain managed to face about 73 balls, i.e. almost 2/3rds of the strike. This against a bowling side consisting of Glenn McGrath, Jason Gillespie, Shane Warne and Stuart MacGill.

Gimme a break if you still think that was not enough Magic. A part of me, the blogger you know, is still unable to come to terms with the fact that this last mentioned magician's trade can never be seen again except in replays or in non-recognised national leagues in the East Indies.

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