Match Mubarak, India. Thank You, Pakistan.

Posted on March 31, 2011
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Foreign Relations, Sports
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Adil Najam

How do I feel today with Pakistan having lost to India in the Semi-Final of the 2011 Cricket World Cup?

I feel exactly as I did on November 4, 1987. I was at the Ghaddafi Stadium in Lahore, as a sports reporter for the newspaper The Muslim, covering the Semi-Final match between Pakistan and Australia in the 1987 World Cup. Pakistan was the clear favorites. Pakistan lost.

How did that feel? Pretty much as today feels. It felt like this:

But as a reader wrote on my earlier post, I am sad, but not angry. Nor am I ashamed or dejected. In an odd sort of way, I am fulfilled. We tried our best.

Today was not our best day; but frankly it was not our worst day either. There have been many days in recent weeks and months when I was ashamed of what was being done in my name. Today was not one of those days. Today, I took many blows, but I stand tall. Today, I wait for tomorrow. Because, tomorrow is another day.

Congratulations, Team India on a well-earned victory.

Thank you, Team Pakistan, for a month full of thrills and chills and making us come together as a country again. Your fielding was rather pathetic, but you have made us proud nonetheless!

93 responses to “Match Mubarak, India. Thank You, Pakistan.”

  1. Shahida says:

    I think the world cup was just great and I was happy with the team and all the positive messages that the performance sent. But now I look at the TV and I think we are again over-doing our reaction to this. Maybe we are so starved of good news and we just exagerate anything.

  2. Kashif says:

    Good worldcup. But just a game. Now lets move on please.

  3. Bangash says:

    I support Afridi comments. Indians crowds find it difficult to even clap when an opposing team hits a four or a sixer. They are hostile to opposing teams, especially Pakistan and the behavior of Indian media was as dirty as back in 2004, when Indian team was touring Pakistan.

  4. Sridhar says:

    One point I wanted to make but forgot. The game has moved on, the crowds have evolved over the last few years and the players are a different lot than they used to be. However, the administration of cricket in India (and Asia in general) is still rotten. There is too much politics, too much greed involved. If the boards of the countries in the region, particularly India are professionalized and made more accountable, it will be a great for cricket as a whole. If not, there is danger of the BCCI culture becoming the ICC culture given its financial muscle. Some would argue that it has already happened. BCCI needs to be fixed for sure. And the ire of the Pakistani commentators against the people and the media is better directed at the BCCI (and their own cricket boards).

  5. Sridhar says:

    Syed Talat Hussein’s article is interesting, but not in illuminating us about the state of Indian society at large, rather about his own mind. It is interesting to see how he makes sweeping generalizations about Indian society based on comments by a couple of former cricketers in the media. His reference to Kapil Dev is also potentially misleading – I am not sure exactly which statement of Kapil’s he was referring to, but I saw one where Kapil was saying that the Pakistani team has had very little to cheer about in the last year or so, and hence its good performance in this World Cup would have provided the team a moral boost. Anything wrong in that? If Talat interpreted this statement as sledging, only God can help him.

    Also, when somebody cannot see the inherent racism in Afridi’s “they cannot be as large hearted as Muslims” remark, it tells us something about them in addition to telling us about Afridi.

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