Tuesday, February 01, 2005

How To Lose A Game

Of cricket, that is. And the West Indies showed how indeed, on a perfect pitch on a perfect day at the WACA. They could not have chosen a worse setting to do it. It is understandable, if not always acceptable, that a side chasing a big total in conditions that offer a bit to the bowlers buckles under pressure. But this was an absolute belter, and West Indies should have cantered home. Yet, they flattered to deceive. They say winning is a habit. Watching this West Indian side lose its way this evening, I couldn’t agree more. Ramnaresh Sarwan is one of the finest talents in the game; there has been little doubt in that regard over the last few years. Today he seemed determined to showcase his talents on an important occasion. But he chose to throw it all away just when he had the Pakistan bowling and the fate of the VB series firmly by the scruff. After the Prince of Trinidad had played an extravagant shot even the blue-blooded could ill afford, Shivnarine Chanderpaul had, along with Sarwan, threatened to make light of the imposing target. Yet one had a distinct feeling of unease even when the going was so smooth. It was only a matter of time. Eventually, the house of cards disintegrated, brought down not so much by a gale force as by a shaky foundation. Déjà vu. - NK PS: On a personal note, I would have liked to watch Australia play West Indies in the final. But as it is likely to be the last game of the season at the MCG, I have to watch it, no matter what. This could be my only chance. Well, Pakistan it is.

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