Sunday, March 20, 2011

Payback is a mean bitch - To the 12 years of pain.

Redemption time, bitches
For most of The Shawshank Redemption fans, there is a belief that the crux of the movie mainly are these couple of scenes where Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins (Andy) deliberate about hope and how it drives you in tough and uninspirational times. It indeed is utterly beautiful. Have a watch.

When a sport is next to life for you, and the team you root for is all you own up to at the end of the day, the resulting barricade of memories is a massive burden to deal with. More mentally rigorous is when the good times often get overshadowed by the nightmarish ones. And then you live your days, months, years and in some cases, distinct instances in desolation and anticipation that things may just turn good for you at some conjecture of time. It's tough to handle the heartaches inflicted and to take it for years till the reprisal time is eventually around.

So maybe, hope is what carries you through such phases, as much as it does in many other parables and constructs of normal life.

At times, a specific battle in the whole campaign is worth a truckload of significance, no matter if it does not contribute in the long term of you succeeding in taking the ultimate prize. Probably because so much has been expected of it for some time already. Yesterday's Pakistan vs Australia World Cup ODI was just that kind of a cricket game. For Pakistan may face Australia very soon in the Semi Final in few days time, that would more be about where their individual destinies would be defined but for now the personal anguish and pain of the previous years has subsided to a large extent thanks to Lala and his men.

If this was just another Pakistan World Cup game, this blog would have not seen this post (since it doesn't feature any senile reviews of the matches or teams/players performance). After a Pakistan-India showdown, the most riveting and schizophrenic fixture is a Pakistan-Australia one, at least for a Pakistani who has lived through the years of gold and dust of Pakistan cricket. There may not have been enough engaging parallels for this contest, the recent history and abysmal looking stats may not have seconded taking this as anything of a warcry from a Pakistani perspective but then it's only history, dedication and hurt which enables one to know how intense this meant and how the insides cringed and ached for getting over the line. This one fucking time.

All because this had overwhelming pain riding all over it. Of years and of tears. And of incessant hope.

The perpetual pain of 20th June 1999 and the agony of 11 February 2003 - of watching a dream World Cup final end in you being in tatters and tears; and of experiencing your greatest ODI XI being clobbered around four years later squandering an initial commanding position provided by one last bowling burst of your cricketing god. Hence, those two World Cups, which are the most intensely scripted in memory, blown up into smithereens by one opponent only culminating in years of distress and misery to live with.

Yesterday was neither about winning the fucking cup just as yet nor it was about playing to the gallery in any aspect. It was not primarily about ending the 34 match World Cup winning streak of the Aussies neither the 28 match unbeaten run of Punter. It was not much about sending them packing for their lowest total in last 6 World Cups nor much for the pride of being the team who has beaten them on either end of their World Cup winning sequence.

Perhaps, it was part of growing in the process of abandoning the psychological trauma which Pakistan has been subjected to whenever it came up against Australia since the mid late 90s and was about coming out of the shell of astounding proportions of fuckups and combating Aussie's once cricketing sadomasochistic traits. It was also an attempt to ease the sufferings of Hobart '99, C&U Finals '00, Lords '01, Colombo '02, Sydney '10, St. Lucia '10. Above all, it was the subsequent step to what was handed to them last summer here in England - the 2-0 T20 win and the ending of the 15 year test win drought at Headingley, the latter whose memories kept flashing incessantly yesterday while the bit-by-bit was being done by the boys. Sitting in the stands on 24 July 2010, gut-wrenched and mind-numbed, couldn't have been more gripping for me. Watching on telly on 19 March 2011 had startling similarities.

Yesterday was about overcoming Australianism. That too in a fucking World Cup, with some style. It was payback time and it was worth the bloody wait.

Here's to this massive win. And for all those who need to know how passion has a fucking funny way of trumping logic. Feed on this.


CoverDrive said...

Quite a payback it was. Very well done by Pak, let's hope they go the whole stretch now that they have made themselves as one of the favorites (4th best odds now). Knock out stages is where it will all matter and fortunately for them they will have a relatively easier one in form of England or West Indies.

Kessers said...

who can forget the 99 final??? 2003 was the end of the legends... very heartbreaking!!! pakistan to go all the way...

ShahRrukh said...

This is so true...(Y)
Feeling so proud of Afridi XI...!!

Faran Ghumman said...

Yes it fuckin feels better, lets enjoy till it lasts, I feel ya Masuud.....

Nabiha Chauhdry said...

"Pakistan may face Australia very soon in the Semi Final in few days time, that would more be about where their individual destinies would be defined but for now the personal anguish and pain of the previous years has subsided to a large extent thanks to Lala and his men."


This victory deserves A LOT MORE than what you've put down here though. Even a naive person like me can FEEL the inspiration it has filled Pakistanis, and in general, cricket lovers with, for years to come! Its not about winning the cup. Its about creating history! Marvelous. Unbelievable! Trust the Green Army to build records. Trust them for maintaining the title of the most exciting and unpredictable team ever! :)

Anonymous said...

the twats had to be put in their place by us only.... hoping the semi final with india... loads of revenge to be taken out in one game...!!

tracerbullet007 said...

The thing is, lot of teams have been waiting for payback time against the Aussies...they still have to get past India who will not have fond memories of the 2003 WC final..

Nabeel said...

f'n great post,the last video gave me goosebumps!

Masuud said...

Cheers guys for the feedback and for feeling it. Appreciate that :)

Tracerbullet007 - Can't wait for India to do them too and for the greatest semi-final ever.

Govind Raj said...

Revenge is a dirty word. It doesn't work in eternity. Beating a below par Australia today with an out of form Captain can't be called 'revenge'. Revenge is what West Indies did to India in 1983 after the shock World Cup defeat.

If you have almost same set of players who have felt 'one particular loss' hurt and they give it back, that is revenge.

For fans, it should soothe their hurt passions / misplaced ego. But on Cricketing merits, it was just another match. One team won and one lost. And I had predicted a Pakistan win long before the WC began.

Australia of the 1999 - 2007 period was arguably the best team of all times. That was not only because of the talent. But also because of the spirit they developed.

In terms of talent alone, Pakistan have always had more than their share of 'Magnificent' talents. But somehow other things never worked for them.

Name a team that keeps Asif, Amer, Shoib Akhtar, Shoaib Malik and Yusuf out for different reasons and still can win.

If I were to have dictatorial powers to manage Pakistan Cricket, I would have seen to it that they would be the World Champions forever. No country can manufacture fast bowlers like Pakistan do.

I am that kind of an Indian who admires Pakistan Cricket and want them to win... except when they play India :-)

Anonymous said...

they are playing excellent cricket, hard to see them being stopped by either australia or india... south africa could be the only team that can make them run hard!

mhsohel said...

Enjoy T20 World cup here