The Mohali heart-breaker – by Bahadar Ali Khan

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For Pakistani nation the moments of happiness have become a rarity in recent times. And in desperation they try to squeeze joy out of any minor/major event that comes across their way. The latest was the Cricket World Cup semi final match that was played in the spirit of sub-continetal Ashes. There was a huge hype weaved around this event and a night before the match Pakistani streets were reflecting the Chaand Raat like scenes. The cricket fans ( meaning by everybody in Pakistan, as everybody is a Cricket fan there ) in order to savour most out of this event made special arrangements to mark it the most memorable one. There was nothing but cricket in the air!

The course of the day leading to the match start time in the afternoon virtually brought Pakistan to a halt. Though officially government granted half-day off but practically it was observed as a full day off. Finally on their TV screens they saw Umar Gul picked up the ball and raced towards Tedndulkar along with millions of racing hearts, especially on the Pakistani side of the sub-continental divide. It is important to reckon this subtle difference that why Pakistani hearts were beating faster then their counterparts. Indians were no less thrilled but lately their country has achieved much successes in a lot of other fields while the Pakistani side is certainly success-thirsty. For the given moment, they were content to quench it with at least a cricketing success.

Ball after ball and Over after Over, as the day progressed so did the Indian score card, notwithstanding some forgiven follies committed by maestro Tendulkar, but in the end the Indian walked out with a decent though chase able total on the scoreboard. The charged crowds on the Pakistani streets regarded that Total as their half success. They ignored the fact that Pakistani bowling was better than Indians but that was not true in the case of batting. Naturally, with brief and distributed intervals of tractions, the Pakistani batting line kept on sliding South, resulting in producing a heart-breaker for 180 million people.

They say, the higher one flies, the harder one falls. Our cricket team’s flight in this match was not higher enough, but the flight of imagination of crowds was not matching the match. It was too high, to say the least. They wanted to settle a number of scores with India by the score on the scoreboard. But as it turned out, though a little late in the minds of emotion savvy nation, it was just another game of Cricket. The one who will play better, carries the day. In this case it happened to be India.

Never mind, we can have match with India in many other fields and believe me those matches don’t have any knock-out stage. History tells us that downfalls of the nations are not caused by singular events rather these are pluralistic in nature. Every string is broken and every bead is spilled. Out of a homogenous downfall we cannot keep some segments floated. All sinks or all rises. So my request is to treat this event just as a beautiful game of cricket and it would distasteful to see if we pick some scapegoats among the Pakistani cricket squad. They did their best. Better luck next time.



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