MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA APRIL 05 , 2011 01.15 A. M.
It happened 28 years ago. It was in 1983 and I was in my home town Deoria in Uttar Pradesh. It was era of Black & White T V and we were watching Cricket World Cup being played at Lord’s in London. I still remember the time when Kapil Dev lifted the Worl Cup at the Lord’s , the Mecca of cricket . That World Cup of 1983 and the image of Indian team is still etched in my memory. In those days Sunil Gavaskar was the cricket icon of India but when Kapil Dev lifted the cup , overnight he became the new icon of Indian cricket.
I must and should admit it here that I have no great knowledge of cricket . But I vividly remember the night of 1983 when I was watching the game in my Deoria house along with my family and I saw Kapil Dev emerging in the balcony of Lord’s holding the cup in his hand. A sense of national pride engulfed me.
If we look at the history of World Cup and its 9 matches till date, it is quite fascinating. In 1975 West Indies won the cup and defeated Australia by 17 runs. In 1979 West Indies again won the cup by defeating England by 92 runs. Legendary Clive Lloyd , the West Indies captain , was hoping for a hat trick in 1983 but his dreams were shattered by resurgent Indian team , led by Kapil Dev. Madan Lal , Mohinder Amarnath , Balwinder Sandhu and Roger Binny bowled well and were successful in defending a tiny total of 183. Not only West Indies but no one believed that mighty and two-time winner West Indies could be dismissed for 140. But they were defeated and India won the cup in 1983 and made history.
After this , in 1987 Australia won the cup by defeating England by 7 runs. In 1992 Pakistan became World champion by defeating England by 22 runs. In 1996 Sri Lanka vanquished Australia by 7 wickets and won the cup. She became the third Asian Nation to won the World Cup after India and Pakistan.
But after this victory it was a 3 successive and epic victories for Australia. She won in 1999 by defeating Pakistan by 8 wickets. Again in 2003 by defeating India by 125 runs. Then again in 2007 she defeated Sri Lanka by 53 runs.
Australia has unique distinction of winning the cup 4 times. Once defeating her arch rival England in 1987 , and then defeating all the previous Asian winners Pakistan , India and Sri Lanka in 1999 , 2003 and 2007 respectively.
Australia won the cup 4 times. West Indies and India 2 times each and Pakistan and Sri Lanks once each. It is still a long wait for England and South Africa.
So in a way it was a long , tiring and heart breaking wait for us too. And after 28 long years we won the cup again by the team led by Mahender Singh Dhoni.
Its time for joyous celebrations. Its time to savour this moment and its time to bask in the glory and I am precisely doing that. So what , if I don’t know the intricacies and nuances of the game enough.
MUMBAI – MAHARASHTRA – INDIA
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- India vs. Sri Lanka: Cricket World Cup 2011 Final Highlights (VIDEO, PHOTOS) (huffingtonpost.com)
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