In far-flung Sydney and Kuala Lumpur, India stood atop the world. While the senior team won the day, and moved one step closer to winning the war against Australia, the juniors swished past South Africa and the young Indians were world champions after a gap of eight years.
The poignancy was impossible to ignore: at one end was a master of the game, the most experienced player in the world, Sachin Tendulkar, shining so bright that his recent and vociferous critics will have nowhere to turn. At the other end was a group of 11 boys, none of who were even born when Tendulkar first played for India. But the day belonged to blue. Harbhajan Singh, vilified in recent times, got both Andrew Symonds and Matthew Hayden, and the mock boxing match he sparred with Yuvraj Singh after dismissing Hayden — who had challenged Ishant Sharma to step into the ring on a radio talk show — as part of the celebrations, only underscored India's desire to win; and this time the bat and ball that did the talking.
Virat Kohli, leader of the boys, was no less pumped up and when South Africa were left needing 13 from the final ball, he went dramatically around the field, telling boys to calm down. When the final ball was bowled, and Bradley Barnes had his off stump pegged back, the boys cut loose. And you can be sure the roars of celebration echoed in Sydney as well.