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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

Cricket

When Bollywood got the Bari boost
Subhash Rajta, Hindustan Times
Bangalore, December 27, 2012
First Published: 00:35 IST(27/12/2012)
Last Updated: 00:36 IST(27/12/2012)

Wasim Raja told Wasim Bari, look Wasim Bari, we must consider this consideration and considering that this is an important match we must put this consideration into action and ultimately score a run.

It was this breathless Amitabh Bachchan dialogue from his 1982 blockbuster 'Namak Halal' that got many goggle the google's equivalent at that time for Wasim Bari. While cricket lovers knew who he was, these inimitable lines made Bari famous amongst others too.

"It was quite amusing when I came to know about it. It became quite famous in Pakistan as well, and people would often rattle it off whenever they saw me," chuckles Bari.

That he personally knew the Indian cine star made it more endearing for him. "We had come to India after a long time in 1979 and there was a lot of excitement around the tour. We met up with several cinema stars…we interacted a lot with common people, went to their homes….it was a totally different time," said the former Pakistan wicket-keeping great.

"The times have changed. Circumstances aren't conducive for such meetings and gatherings, the schedules are so tight…you just have to live in your time."

Contrary to what many believe, Bari said they got along very well with their Indian counterparts. "We shared a special relation with the Indian players, something we didn't have with players from any other country."

But wasn't it tough to share a cordial relationship when there was so much pressure to win every game against each other, and sparks flew on the field? "What the crowds feel and want can't be wished away…it's still the same. But as far as the on-field clashes were concerned, they were mostly intended, not sudden, emotional outbursts. There were no microphones then, and we would try to psychologically bog down each other by talking whatever we could think of," said Bari. "But we would be fine once we were off the field." he said.

Just to stress his point, Bari said they still catch up with each other whenever they could. "Kirmani had recently come to Karachi and we met up. I keep meeting Gavaskar and Kapil…our relationship is still very strong," he said.


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