Monday, March 28, 2016

Sachin Vs Virat - Great players in their own way

That day, I realized his greatness when he scored that unbeaten 133 in 86 balls against Sri Lanka at Hobart, it was a sign what was he about to become for the country of billion fans. Obvious comparisons with Sachin Tendulkar had started long time ago but it was not agreed by everyone, After all he Started his career when the legend was still playing. He had one thing common with the great at that time, and that was his penchant for runs, and century accumulation just like Tendulkar did in 90's.
With the victory in the T20 worldcup match against Austrilia, India qualified for the semifinal thanks to virat's tremendous world class knock, which reminded people of sachin's Desert storm against the same opponent almost 18 years back, No doubt comparisons between them has come out.
Is It Fair, Comparing the Two
Almost Similar
There is no doubt that both are one of their kind but are they similar, or Is it fair to compare them. As an Indian, we never stop comparing with one another, then be it our parents comparing us with Sharmaji's son or us comparing Irfan Phatan as next Kapil Dev, it just doesn't stop. This results in buildup of unnecessary expectation and pressures among the young ones, which not everyone can handle.
Few things that are similar between these two players is the stats and their dedications for the team. Here I list out some features what makes them apart:
The class of opposition:
The battle Against Warne and Shoaib Akthar was always treat to watch, while Virat is yet to get such Challengers
When you consider the oppositions class, Sachin stays ahead hands down, He played extra-ordinarily against the mighty Australians, one of the best teams for a decade, a team that consisted the likes of Mcgreath, Gillespie and Warne. And also excelled against bowlers like waqar, Akram, Muralitharan, vaas. He has also played against most of the current lot of best bowlers like Malinga, Steyn, Morkel etc When it comes to virat kohli, I would say he can play against all the bowlers of the present generation, but it must be noted that although this age of fast pace cricket comes with a added responsibility of scoring quickly, the quality of bowling has also reduced to some extent.

The Team
Always carrying the teams responsibilities

There is a gulf of difference between the teams that these two played for, Before 2000 or the time fab 4 came to take the burden off Sachin, The Indian team mostly depended on Sachin to bail them out, stories of families shutting down their TV sets after Sachin's dismissal had now become a folklore of sorts, It cannot be said in the same way for Virat, because there was always a good top order at the start of his career and now a cool headed captain behind him in the batting order, so its not like all hope is lost.

But it is also one of the reason for these comparisons is the present situation of team, which reminds of 90's team, One man playing against all odds while rest of the team crumbles, with only difference being virat takes it home, thanks to one or the other playing stepping up with him, unlike 90's Sachin, whose valiant knocks mostly ended up on losing sides.

Great players in their own way
Over the years with each match-winning innings the comparisons has grown, although both are poles apart in personalities. while virat is more aggressive, outspoken and has a 'in your face' attitude Sachin was more humble, less spoken and used to answer critics with his batting. Sachin always avoided sledging or unnecessary fights on the field, While Virat believes more in giving it back to the opposition.
But both are respected and equally feared by their opponent because of their one true genius talent:Batting.

  While the comparisons will always be there between the two, I believe if Virat continues his hunger for runs and winning attitude for few more years, People will automatically stop comparing and he will be one of a kind on his own, just like people stopped comparing Sachin with Sunil Gavaskar. There is no doubts in coming years both will be termed as legends of their era and make us proud.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

A Cricket Fan Story

As a child I never had much interest in cricket since there was no one at home watching it. With dad living in gulf and mom watching mostly her regional serials, we brothers grew up watching cartoons, WWE, the occasional Hindi movies, even the AXN shows like 'Reply's believe it or not' but never cricket. So it was in 2002, when we shifted our home to new locality with lots of neighbors watching cricket, Talking cricket and playing cricket, that it finally sparked a curiosity.
The Utimate fan favourite, needed no Introduction

Before 2002, Sachin was easily the most recognizable name and face for me, Dravid and Ganguly were only heard about, while a lots of other cricketers name was not even known to me. It was the Netwest series of 2002 that changed everything, the excitement in the room full of neighboring uncles and kids during the match and the extraordinary run chase led by the two youngsters started a new Interest in my life: Cricket.

The aggressive captain
The unexpected success in the 2003 world cup gave rise to numerous cricketing dreams, shots that I enacted at homes although not a good cricketer on the field, I was always the best in my dreams, with the finals of 2003 being played numerous times in my head, of course ending the other way around. With the rise of Indian cricket team with this new aggressive approaches, I became a fan of Sachin, Sehwag, Yuvraj and slowly became to relish the success of the team as my success. I would become sad if a match day comes on weekdays and I would have to miss the game, sometimes During the day games, I would run to home after the my afternoon school just so that I could see the last few overs or balls and enjoy the winning moments. One of the reasons why I started reading newspaper is because of crickets. i would read up all the articles about the game, matches, articles of other teams matches, etc, even collect the cut outs of my favorite player just like the every other die hard fan. When their is no telecasts on Doordarshan, I would switch on to the radio to make sure I remained updated with the game.

Emerging youngsters of 2000
From 2005 the Indian teams downward graph begin with the Ganguly-Chappel controversy dragging along till the early exit of 2007 50 over world cup. This was the period where I had to choose more often than not between studies and cricket, Because of board exams. The Early exit and the controversy around the teams poor performances and the board gave rise to a new rebel league ICL and with the advent of T20 matches around the cricketing world, the focus slowly began to shift towards the quick paced game of cricket, where the result would be declared within 3-4 hours. The T20 world cup win of 2007 gave rise to a lot of new young promising players. And soon they began to replace the our seniors in ODI's . This was beginning a little uncomfortable for me, as Although I wanted the team to win, I also wanted to see the Dravids and ganguly in the game. Thankfully, the lack of application from the young players and the experienced and good performances of seniors in the Test matches kept them in the game.

The End of an ERA

Within the couple of years the seniors started to retire from the cricket, starting from Ganguly, followed by Kumble, Laxman, and Dravid and with them I started to lose interest in cricket part by part. The 2011 world cup brought back the the excitement in me, the performance of our cricket team was spot on and we went on to win the world cup and my cricketing interest was back on track. while we would win the occasional ODI's, we were terrible in the test after the Worldcup, going on to lose the string of matches. And so did my fluctuating Interest, Earlier I would watch a whole cricket match if given a opportunity, then it became only for Sachin, Sehwag, Yuvraj, Zaheer and Dhoni's finishing off the game.

I used to always blame that too much of T20 cricket, lack of Test victories or the good performances away from home as the reason for my declining interest in cricket. But it was far from true, I realized that there will never be the team I grew up with, the youngsters are new but are performing at the same level we did back in 2001-02, Its not their failure that caused me to lose interest, but it was life, the growing responsibilities and the pressures of education and job, had made me neglect the game.

As T20 Word cup 2016 begins, the Interest seems to be back in me. Virat's exceptional Batting performances, Old guns Yuvi's magical sixes, Nehra's swing and Dhoni finishing the game seems to be back. Even the new age bowlers like Bumrah , Shami look promising, while it would be unfair to leave out turbonator as he could still change the game. It would be Interesting and exciting to see this team go up against the world and although they seem to be favorites to lift the cup, It wouldn't be easy but that's just what I wanted to get the cricket fan inside me back.

A true story of a Headless chicken

A story of a miracle that sounds completely rubbish, hoax and fantasy but is 100% true. On September 10, 1945, a farmer named Lloyd Olsen of Colorado, US decided to have a chicken for his supper with his family, subsequently he choose a five month old chicken named Mike (named after he got famous). 

Escape from the Jaws of Death
  Olsen's axe removed the bulk of head but missed the jugular vein, which keeps the basic functions of the breathing, reflex action, etc alive, a ear and most of the brain. As a result, Mike survived and remained healthy for about two more years.

A sideshow of a headless chicken is worth an audience.
  As mike survived the incident Olsen decided to take care of him and took him to the university of Utah. He was med a mixture of milk and water through a eyedropper. Eventually, he became famous and started touring the country with his owner. Making a career from sideshows in the company of similar creatures, Photographed by dozens of newspaper and magazines, Olsen started charging public 25 cents for live displays. At one time, It was reported that the chicken earned $4500 per month and was valued at $10,000.

An unfortunate death
 In march 1947, in the middle of a tour while on a stopover Motel, Mike started choking, Unfortunately his feeding and cleaning syringes was left back at the sideshows a day before and so were unable to save him.
A monument of Mike in Colorado,US

A legacy
 Mike, the headless chicken is now an institution in Colorado with an annual 'Mike the Headless Chicken Day' festival with events like Egg toss, 5K run like headless chicken, chicken Bingo etc. Also inspiring a music video for a poultry theme comedy punk band.

An Headless chicken just proving the point that world and this life is full of uncertainties.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Charlie chaplin's Timeless Speech for all Humanity.

Just came across this piece of Charlie Chaplin's film The Great Dictator and its relevance in today's world. What a great speech from a man who gave us countless classic silent films and when he spoke he made us feel our mistakes, the jealousy, ego, greed and the hatred we carry among ourselves, within ourselves against one another.

 A film that came about 75 years ago has all the attributions of the present world. A world filled with hatred not just against our enemy country but within too, within our country, within our people, within our life. Enacting Hitler, Charlie Chaplin produced an amazing speech. A speech for all, a speech we would love to hear from our leaders

A Timeless Speech

I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone – if possible – Jew, Gentile – black man – white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness – not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way.

Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost.

The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men – cries out for universal brotherhood – for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world – millions of despairing men, women, and little children – victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people.
To those who can hear me, I say – do not despair. The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed – the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish.

Soldiers! don’t give yourselves to brutes – men who despise you – enslave you – who regiment your lives – tell you what to do – what to think and what to feel! Who drill you – diet you – treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men – machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate – the unloved and the unnatural! Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!

In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” – not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power – the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure.

Then – in the name of democracy – let us use that power – let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world – a decent world that will give men a chance to work – that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfill that promise. They never will!

Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people! Now let us fight to fulfil that promise! Let us fight to free the world – to do away with national barriers – to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness.

Soldiers! in the name of democracy, let us all unite!

"Let us all unite." The expressions at the end line make one's spirit rise with enthusiasm.

The world is growing not by unity of people but with divisions of countries. Its everyday news of how people want a separate region for their people, people belonging to their race or caste or color.

 "You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate – the unloved and the unnatural! Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty!"

A perfect line not just for soldiers but every single one of us, because its true we have the love of humanity in our hearts.

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