Sunday, October 12, 2008

Risk it on pitch-and-toss, and lose, and start again

Aakash Chopra. If you followed the 2004-05 Indo-Australian away Test series you will remember the sedate opening partner of a rampaging Virender Sehwag. And like some of us maybe you will always wonder why he never got another fair chance to redeem himself in an away Test series even though he obviously was a good horse for courses where an opener scoring 30 in the 1st session is still doing his job by protecting the middle order from the new ball.

A few days back he got another chance to stake a claim to the Indian Test side against the visiting Australian side. He failed to score big in the match - and must have been the first to know that at his present age he may not get another chance in his career to make amends. He must have been distraught at that realisation. But the man is man enough to put his head up, look back, and smile about it. I thought there was a lot of Rudyard Kipling's "If", especially lines 17 thru' 20, in that post by Aakash(and I thought Aakash expressed that rant on the silly newspaper comment because the comment was too silly not to rant). Am I being over-dramatic? Well, maybe. But I just thought of what the man went through, put myself in his place and wondered if I could bring myself to write that post. I decided that I would be proud of myself if I could 'achieve' writing that post.

That's more like the good Test opener you are, Aakash. Taking some blows and falling over, back on feet quickly with a wry smile, replying to some silly comments passed by the fielders and moving on to the next delivery.

Update: Here's a recitation of Rudyard's 'If' by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal...forget their lack of oratory skills, and find me two other people from the world of all sports that are more worthy of this poem than those two.

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