Monday, November 30, 2009

The Littler Master

If there is one thing that can help me write tons of posts, that would be my ability to feel nostalgic at the drop of a hat. That, combined with my natural talent to suck at cricket, would form the crux of this post.

Nostalgia is one emotion that has helped me maintain my sanity and optimism. As for my cricketing abilities, I was not always a loser. There was a time when I was quite gifted (primarily due to my fertile imagination) When I was five, I realized that I could snatch victory from the jaws of defeat by scoring 21 runs from 3 deliveries thus winning the man of the match and helping India reach the finals of the World Cup. Later that week, I discovered much to my amazement that I had just taken seven wickets in an over against Pakistan in the World Cup Finals when they were coasting along with a required run rate of 3 per over. No, I did not bowl a no-ball. I completed a caught & bowled dismissal while simultaneously running the non-striker out. Thus did I achieve the first twin dismissal in the history of cricket. Thus did India win the '92 World Cup and I, the man of the series.

However, with time, I lost my innocence as I learnt the rules of the game - the stringent rules which shackled my imagination from pulling off some incredible victories. Thus ended the first golden era in my cricketing career. Though it was short-lived, I had made a name for myself as the genius all-rounder from the streets of Dombivali who could make Imran Khan shit in his pants. My focus also gradually shifted from becoming the next Kapil Dev to the next Sachin Tendulkar. After every Indian victory, I'd ask my mother if it would be alright for me to become a cricketer. She'd smile back and ask me to finish my homework first. This is where part-I concludes. Find below the career statistics of this boy wonder unearthed from old issues of Wisden and the by-now-erased files of

Full Name: Srinivasan Sampathkumar
Born: July 13th, 1986
Current Age: 23 years 141 days
Major Teams: India, West Zone, Mumbai, Dombivali (W)
Batting Style: Right-hand bat
Bowling Style: Right-arm fast, Right-arm medium, Right-arm off-break, Right-arm leg break

Batting and fielding averages (1992-94)
(Read as Matches, Innings, Not Outs, Runs scored, Highest Score, Average, Balls Faced, Strike Rate, Number of 100s and 50s)
Tests 13 17 5 2143 247 178.6 1644 130.35 8 1
ODIs 27 27 9 1721 146* 95.61 923 186.46 9 5
First-class 2 2 2 346 257* -- 149 232.22 2 0

Bowling averages (1992-94)
(Read as Matches, Innings, Balls Bowled, Runs Conceded, Wickets, Best figures - innings, Best figures - match, Average, Economy, Strike Rate)
Tests 13 21 1075 394 99 8/4 16/29 3.98 2.2 10.85
ODIs 27 12 372 92 89 6/1 6/1 1.03 1.48 4.18
First-class 2 - - - - - - - - -

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Saturday, November 28, 2009

Time for a change...

This past one month has been a slow process of recuperation. And I think it is time that I got back to my old ways - times when I'd blog to express my creativity (or the lack of it) instead of blogging to vent out my frustration. Words desert me at this timely hour but I guess I will publish this post no matter what. I think that is what I need to do - take a decision and stick by it, no matter what. And with time, things (and words) shall fall in place. Time - we seem to have enough of it and yet find it slipping through our fingers without a trace. You shall be seeing a lot more of such random statements in the coming posts. Yes, I'd like to post more often. I need to chronicle my past few months in Mumbai. They were memorable - at least some of them were. Hopefully, by then, I can lose my Midas touch of mediocrity.

So I've decide to reinvent myself yet again (Yeah, that's the term used if we're not happy with who/what we are or have become) Actually I am exaggerating. I have not hired a swanky interior designer to redecorate the living room of my life. No no no no.. To put it simply, I am looking at improving a little bit - above the just noticeable difference (I think that was put way too simply!)

On a more serious note, I'd also like to thank most of my friends who were really supportive during this period. Some were concerned and tried to stay in touch while there were others who, understanding my Cancerian traits, left me alone. And I am not talking about those who were too busy to disturb me - that doesn't count as leaving me alone!
Anyway, thank you for all the support. Really appreciate it.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

A batch-mate of mine committed suicide yesterday evening.

When I first heard the news, it felt like being stabbed with a small knife – the wound is not deep and yet it hurts. It hurts enough for you to yell. And with time, as the details are revealed and the news begins to sink in, it feels as if the knife just turned into a sword as it grows deeper and deeper into your wound making your flesh burn. And mind you, it’s not a gradual process. No no no.. It’s just a sudden jerk of motion and you twitch in agony. You twitch because it hurts you. You twitch because it brings back old memories. But most importantly, you twitch because if fate had been unkind, you very well know that the person in question could have been anyone – even you.

Rest in peace, Ghanghor.