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HindustanTimes Fri,25 Apr 2014

Cricket Columns

The romance of bat chasing ball is enchanting
Gautam Gambhir
May 12, 2013
First Published: 00:49 IST(12/5/2013)
Last Updated: 11:33 IST(12/5/2013)

There are certain things which have fought time, fashion and generations. Ray Ban's aviator sunglasses, blue denims and white shirt fall in that category for me. I can wear them any day, anytime, any place and for any occasion.

I don't know, perhaps it was after watching Tom Cruise in ‘Top Gun’ that I fell in love with aviators. As for the white shirt and blue denims, they are the most reliable combo.

Cricket-wise, there are certain things that have seen the test of time. One is the square drive. I love the stroke for its elegance, poise and the craft that comes with it.

I may be a romantic person but Natasha will tell you that I never went down on my knees to propose to her. I'd prefer touching my back knee while hitting the good, old square drive.

I raised this subject as I hit a satisfying square drive against Pune. I was lucky to pierce the small gap between point and cover point as the ball sped for four.

For a moment I wanted to exult in jubilation as it was almost a perfect stroke but then I realised I was in a stadium and there was a match to be won.

Timeless shot
As the stroke came in a winning contest, I look back at it with even more fondness. The other things that have seen the test of time is stepping out and hitting the ball over the top.

I love the spectacle of dancing down the crease, one, two and three….bang the ball sailing over the head for a six.

The romance of the bat chasing the ball is so enchanting. I compare this stroke for my love for the black Yamaha RX 100. I was in school and then in college when this bike was a rage.

Guys would love the black Yamaha RX 100 and the sound it created. It may seem silly but the sound meant romance.

If you rode the black Yamaha you were sure to have a girl of your choice in college. Before you draw conclusions, I never had that bike, sorry.

Dream delivery
I was a part-time leg-spinner in my early days. I loved to flight the ball, trying to make it dip at the batsmen (which it never did) and spinning it past them.

Wow! That is a dream delivery but one that I have often bowled in early days of cricketing career. Ever since, I have seen leg-spinners all round the world roll out this dream delivery.

This vintage delivery may compare to the good old black landline phones that were provided by MTNL (Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd).

I loved the ring and the fascination of receiving a call when phones were a luxury. Guys would return from practice or school and be dying to know if their girlfriend had called.

In those days they could never be direct, so the sheepish query was “Was there a blank call?” And the reply more often was, “No”.

Those were the times.....

Kaizen Media Solutions
The writer is KKR skipper


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