Monday, January 26, 2009

End of an OZ Era ?

Phew...The long wait is over and for a change am seeing aussies in a position where they put all teams of world in , almost for a entire decade and more. They have been well and truly beaten by the proteas. Throughout the  test and one day series , the proteas portrayed amazing team spirit and surprisingly it was the fledglings that took them to nadir. Indeed, SA rided on the shoulders of some young guns like Duminy, Botha, Steyn, Morkel(Albie)  and Villiers. Not to discount the effort put in by the senior blokes, as this victory wouldn have been possible without those experienced campaigners as well.

Well, gone are the times when i remember, i switched on ESPN , hoping to see a bad aussie batting scorecard, instead would end up witnessing a score of 335/1 (Hayden 111* and ponting 45*, langer departed after inflicting enough damage). Gone are the dreaded times when we hoped the poor pair of kumble and srinath facing mcgrath & co, build a partnership and take india to victory, with the sccore being 112/8  and another 125 runs needed for victory. Gone are the times when strauss watched agape a scorcher from warnie, rattling the timber and finally the aussie unit's victory laps are becoming bygones.

So ruthless they were ,that any cricket fan (except the aussies,of course)  would be cursing them under every breath of theirs and praying for a heavy aussie loss. To be frank i had even wondered,  if in future the  oz would turn world cup finals into a mere formality. There were even forwards going on, after 2007 WC, which said, hence forward the aussie team would  only play the finals, to avoid time wastage. Every aussie loss was celebrated ( i still remember the match were bangladesh beat them in england). But even before one finishes saying the phrase - 'That's it, this is the end of the aussie domination.' , the aussies would just give a faint shrug and win the series with amazing ease.  True that they have given nightmares to one and every cricketing team.

However, one can easily feel the lack of momentum and absence of 'going in for the kill' attitude in the current aussie unit. The absence of the senior pros are heavily felt. Infact there was a call for warne some time back , after the indian tour loss, but it sounds very absurd. They need to try and build up a young team for the future rather than banking on the old champs forever. Its blatant that the aussies are undergoing a transition phase and it always takes some time and experience, before they can gel together as the same old marauding gang. However the problem is the heavy expectations that these young inexperienced baggy greens carry on their shoulder. OZ have always been a juggernaut and defeat for such a unit is perceived unusual and 'OOO'  in the cricketing world. 

Punter's leadership will come under heavy scrutiny and am sure his team would be lambasted by the aussie media. Its gonna be hard time for that champion cricketer (well, am a fan of his batting and nothing else) who is coping to come to terms with the raw fellas, he has been provided with. It will be really interesting to see how  punter grooms the newbies and gets the aussie team back on track

It is a real unusual situation for the OZ to be in, who now have been well and truly been ambushed by the Indians last year end and now the Proteas.  They bet a lacklustre kiwi side, before the SA tour, but then the kiwis are coming back for one dayers this week.  It should be a pretty interesting contest, this. The kiwis would definitely be  influenced by the SA series victory and would be believing that they can do it too.Hope it peters out to be a even contest rather than the same 'OLD' aussie show :).

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Eezhathu Tamizhargazh (Lankan Tamils) !

Place :  A Forest camp in Srilanka (Eezhathu kaatu pagudhi)
Inhabitants: A Tamil Eezham Family
The Family: Father , Mother and 3 little children
Family's survival -  Occasaional food items and other supplies,  from the relief materials that reach them via various helping organisations in Tamilnadu and other places. 

One fine afternoon. Surprisingly no bombings and fights in their area. More important they have some rice in hand for their lunch. The mother goes into the forest, gets some wood for fire and comes back. She starts preparing rice by making a fire out of the wood that has been just bought.  She  is extremely happy that her hunger struck family is gonna have something to cheer about today. A FEAST indeed, given their circumstanes. 

Cooking's done. All 5 in the family  gather around for a meal,  something that has become a rare occasion for them. Happiness gleam in their faces.  By the time they would have had  coupla mouthfulls, they hear the roaring of fighter jets in they sky.  'They've come here too. Not even a single day we can think about peace', says  the dad, as he moves out of the hiding to see  what's actually happening.

As soon as he comes outta the house, he is able to witness destructive bombs being dropped a little far ahead, from their place. Realising the fact that  jeopardy is just a few metres away, he rushes into their hiding,  takes his children with him, runs  and shouts at his wife to follow him to the safety trenches, that have already been prepared, having in mind such sudden attacks.   Realising that their mom's not following behind, the little ones shout out on top of their voice, asking her to follow suit immediately. Poor mom, stores the the just cooked in a safe place , in order to safeguard it from stray animals & crows and then starts running towards the trench. Half way through, a powerful bomb strikes her and  she falls down to the ground. The  hepless father and the littles ones witness their mom suffering a  horrible death, in front of their own eyes.

This isnt some cooked up fiction , but a true story that happened very recently in the forest areas of srilanka. In lieu of the recent fightings there between the tigers and military, millions of tamilians are subjected to such horrifying incidents. Families ruined, women raped, children killed, the srilankan tamils are  living in hideouts in their own land and therez very little being done from out govt, which is aware of the  fatalities that are happening there almost on a daily basis. With the Military forces in lanka, planning for a complete wipeout for Tigers within febraury 2009, only god knows what is gonna be the state  of the tamilians there. Let us sincerely pray  and hope that this attrocity comes to an end soon. 

Thursday, January 01, 2009


Was waiting in Tiruvanmiyur-ECR junction, for catching a share auto to office. A guy, appearing to be a north-indian, was arguing with a auto wala near by. Strained my ears li'l bit to hear what was happening. This northi was telling the driver that he wanted to go to 'Koyamaptu'. Auto wala was trying to explain the northi in his own version of english, "Coimbatore ellam poga mudiadhunga,no go, romba dhooram, very long..go train.not coming". This northi was however flustered and was still pestering the auto wala to take him to 'koyambatu' and told him that was ready to shell any amount, as he was in a hurry. This was going on for 5 minutes as even i was scratching my head as to understand what the northi really wanted.Thank god he finally mentioned the word "Bus", once to the autowala. I immedly understood that the place that he was referring to was "Koyambedu" . Intervened and explained that to the auto wala who finally burst into laughter (well the northi had a nervous laughter as he was still looking at his watch) and agreed to drop the northi there :).