• Steve Waugh with his red hanky.Steve Waugh with his red hanky.

    It’s that time of the World Cup when die-hard fans would go any distance to keep their teams from losing. Indians being a people with a thing for the irrational, expect them to do some crazy things when their team meets Australia in the quarterfinal.

    The most well-known superstition among cricket fans in India goes something like this: when the team is doing well, do not move an inch from your position. A slight movement risks tilting the planets off their favourable positions and bring bad luck to the team.

    I can tell you of my own experience.

    +++

    In the Natwest final of 2002, India were down in the dumps, five-down chasing 326 when Yuvraj Singh unleashed three fours in a Ronnie Irani over. Sensing a build-up, I took my position on the drawing room carpet in front of our TV.

    While Yuvraj and Kaif got India closer, I stayed still, not moving a millimetre. My legs fell asleep, my back hurt and the tension made me uneasy. As three wickets fell, I began to doubt my method but decided to

    Read More »from What’s Your Cricketing Superstition?
  • Sri Lankan umpire Asoka de Silva was the most notable omission from the list of match officials for the quarterfinals. This isn't surprising.

    Read More »from How Teams & Umpires Coped With The DRS
  • Open mike

    So yesterday I was reading this column by one of our legendary former players and it freaked me out.

    Here it is.

    What strikes you about it -- besides the fact that the background music is the sound of an axe being ground -- is how neatly it divides itself into two parts. The first part talks about how stupid the 'so called experts' (having observed the gent's style for the best part of two decades, I'll make an educated guess that his target is someone, or a few someones, who are part of the panel on one of those TV talk shows) are in calling for the inclusion of Ravichandra Ashwin. And the second half of the column is about how Ashwin is a real talent and deserves to be included.

    Duh!

    Putting the signature stamp on this is the throwaway line: "Remember these 'experts' wanted Greg Chappell as India's coach too." Nice. Plays right into the anti-Chappell ethos that is still prevalent even as his successor, having finished a full stint, counts down to departure.

    But in the spirit of

    Read More »from Open mike

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