23 October 2006

Luxury's lap

What luxury! The average Indian cricket fan would stab and bite for the opportunity. Plush air-conditioned seating, unlimited beer, unlimited food, a clear view of Brad Hogg's bald spot and a close look at the loud and mysterious Mister Lalit Modi. And oh yeah, cricket from behind the bowler's arm.

The cricket was ho-hum. Only Mitchell Johnson and Damien Martyn providing the spark to an otherwise dull contest; its nature decided as early as half way into England's batting when Flintoff perished stupidly. Collingwood as ususal tried to punch above his weight, but the rest of the batting had already thrown in the towel. The headline writers had expected much more - a pre-Ashes dhamaka offer; a Diwali firecracker of a match to light up the skies with shock and awe. In the end, it ended with the phussss of a wet cracker. A few sips into our second glass of beer, though, things did not look that bleak. Strauss was displaying characteristic panache square of the wicket and Bell looked like he had strapped on a few booster rockets. And to top it all, Damien Martyn dropped a sitter and when I chocked on my beer, I practically spat on Brad Hogg who as ususal had his tongue out.

The Sawai Man Singh stadium, let it be said again - is an excellent piece of work, and can certainly compete with Mohali for the title of India's best cricket ground. The grass cover was perfect enough to look phoren. But, I just saw the best parts of the ground, and consumed RCA sponsored beer and pineapple souffle - so my judgment is in danger of being jaundiced. So I suggest if you are around the next time there is a game happening in pink Jaipur, go for it.

By the way, I think Lalit Modi thinks he is a bit of a rockstar. I saw him venture out into the crowd and give away autographs. Cricket administrators too??