It is difficult right now to think or write about anything except cricket. I tried. I really did. I failed.
Good can, and does, come out of sports; and especially an unexpectedly brilliant sports performance. Of coruse, bad can also come from the same. We do not yet know what will come out of Mohali, Chandigarh, in the World Cup 2011 Semi-Final between India and Pakistan. But as one think of what might, I am immediately drawn back to April 18, 1986, to another India-Pakistan match, and to a performance that I have earlier wondered could be Pakistan’s greatest cricket moment ever.
What came out of it, you ask. If you were in Pakistan at that time or in the days and weeks after that, you would not ask. A glow of confidence, goodwill and pride that is, well, priceless. But if you insist, here is something else that came out of it: great art and great humor. Bushra Ansari in a parody of Salma Agha on Miandad’s chakka. Priceless.
So, I keep on wondering what will come out of this Semi-Final – and of this Semi-Final. Whoever wins, I hope the result will be thoughts that are good and memories that are pleasant.