World Cup Cricket 2011 is on. For those few who aren't too familiar; 14 cricket playing nations participate in the hope of winning the coveted prize, name and fame - World Cup winners.
I've watched quite a few matches this year. Some on my own, some thanks to dude.
I've been watching the games since I was a kid - mum, dad and I would get together, finish all the chores, just in time to settle down to uninterrupted viewing of a 50 over game.
50 overs of positive thoughts, cheering, the occasional under the breath muttering of abuses, yelling and in my mums case, silent prayers.
*smiles* I'd bet my last dollar she still does it too.
Tomorrow's a big game - India vs. Pakistan in the World Cup semi finals.
Again, that's a BIG deal. No points for guessing how far back that rivalry goes.
Every time the two countries play together - it's explosive. The media goes absolutely nuts with the coverage - bribes and match fixing allegations, player backgrounds, scandals, rivalry - the works. It's almost as if the media can't milk the proverbial cow enough.
When I was younger, I was just as gung ho about it. India simply always had to win, win, win!!
A nation of a gazillion people support, whole-heartedly; this team of eleven on the field.
With this World Cup I realised that a lot of us are still like that when it comes to cricket. We Bleed Blue (India team colors). We pray. We support 'the boys' as if we've broken bread with each of them on several occasions. We want them to win. So, so badly.
It's nice to belong to a camp. To feel this crazy one-ness with a nation you belong to, but haven't grown up in. To want to paint three lines on each cheek - saffron, white and green.
To yell and chant and cheer for our boys in blue. To see all the crazy facebook updates, email forwards and sms messages - all supporting the game, the team, the hope of victory.
And like mom, to say a silent prayer.
(God may like cricket right, who knows?)
I'm not too fond of the anti-opposition jibes that are doing the rounds though. Maybe it's a girl thing. If there's one thing I've learnt from watching dude play basketball over the years...on court, it's a World War in the making. Off court- it's all chest bumping, hand shaking, fist thumping camaraderie.
Let's hope that's the way it is with tomorrows game too.
Oh and btw, dude's facebook status - I don't like cricket.
I love it.