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HindustanTimes Wed,26 Nov 2014
Only when I am in a contest my competitive side emerges
Gautam Gambhir, Hindustan Times
May 20, 2014
First Published: 01:21 IST(20/5/2014)
Last Updated: 01:23 IST(20/5/2014)
"Shahrukh is an unbelievable team owner"

American Psychological Association defines anger says and I quote: “Anger is an emotion characterised by antagonism toward someone or something you feel has deliberately done you wrong.”

Yes I did feel somewhat similar when I was wrongly given out in our Sunday’s game against Sunrisers. All those “what ifs” invaded my mind. What if Robin Uthappa is also dismissed? What if we collapse like we did against Rajasthan Royals? What if we lose this game? My mind was exploding and I gave lip-readers enough joy on way to the dugout.

On most days I’d like to think that I am an easy going guy. I have three dogs – Junior, Tyson and Buddy, they all love me and I adore them. My family feels that our house becomes home when I am around. I’ve got some really close friends who by the looks of things like my company. I’ve heard some more than decent reviews from my in-laws as well. And trust me, I am not even that typical Punjabi “Perri Paunaa” (Punjabi greeting which is extended by touching feet of the elders) type son-in-law.

It is only when I am in a contest that my competitive side emerges. I accept that I’m not a good loser at all. Even before I was docked 15 per cent of my match fees as fine for my dissent, I knew umpire is only human and should be allowed an odd mistake. But then such is the heat of professional sport that tolerance levels are really challenged. The general feeling amongst cricketers is that when nothing short of 100 per cent is expected from us then why should there be an allowance for umpires. May be we’re being too harsh on them. With 40,000 odd spectators shouting, a ball bowled at more than 140 kmph, the front foot no-ball rule testing umpires to readjust their focus from bowler’s front foot to the batsman and all of this happening really fast.

With this backdrop I think my reaction was clearly not warranted. Much later when we had won the game and I was settled, a teammate reminded me that I was a daddy now and very soon my little angel will be watching me play. I want to be her hero and a reaction like this is surely not going to help.

I am waiting for the day when she travels with me to Kolkata. I’m sure she would be proud of her daddy seeing the love for me and my team here. The place is my second home. Everything from the airport, to our route to the hotel, has become a part of my system. We checked in pretty late and I could not do what I love the most here – feed the fish in the ponds of our hotel. That is reserved for the morning.

The day will be action packed. I know it is Tuesday but I am sure there will be some 80,000 fans cheering us against CSK. That is even more challenging for an umpire. But this time whatever happens I will keep those emotions in check. After all it is a matter of being a hero for the little one.

The writer is the KKR skipper (Kaizen Media Solutions)


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