Friday, March 19, 2010

Game That’s A Religion

That's one of my favourite article!!

Yeah! “‘Chouka mara rey’, ‘buddy leave the bat it’s my turn now’, ‘tu khudko Sachin samajhta hai kya,’” all these cricket terminologies are often heard from the street across the house while people are having their most relaxing moment sipping evening tea in balconies. The sporty sound threatens to convert into a howl if it is a holiday! The after-effect of ICC Champions’ Trophy and UEFA Champions’ league matches and current IPL has tickled the sporty hormone of kids and youth to play cricket in their campus.

‘Cluckk’, broke off the windowpane followed by a thick silence in the street. There falls the thunderstorm when the owner of windowpane appears frowningly on the little monsters playing cricket in street who immediately want to disappear but after getting back their cricket ball. It is a usual event that takes place in almost all the societies, gullies and mohhallas. Let’s call it the ‘Chronicles of Gully Cricket’ or ‘Backyard Cricket’? Well the name doesn’t make any difference to the carefree chaps armed with bats and balls shouting, fielding and exclaiming at the same time. Sporting an indigenous game in their lane, their gullies, they call it simply Cricket!
‘Simply’ because it barely needs a cricket kit, pitch, uniform or even a proper bat and ball. “It is a team-less, ground-less, umpire-less and a free of rules game we play !,” exclaimed Harshit Agrawal, a ten year old kid while playing Gully Cricket in the lane near his house. Asking about the strategies that they follow he said that the place for playing is never decided beforehand, it varies from garage, street to a quadrangle of four flats and a tar road of the gully. Even the bat and stumps could be of any shape (or say shapeless) as long as the ball can hit them both accordingly. “The bat should be suitably gripped, be it a small rectangular board or the one that is already bat-shaped and mummy uses for beating the clothes,” blinked Harshit. His friend Golu joined in to detail further about the tennis ball they use to avoid injuries as the cork ball used in cricket hurts hard, above all tennis balls are cheaper costing from Rs 25-30.
“A prop is used as a stump which could be a bottle of cold drink, a carton, even a bucket sometimes, a sign on the wall or even bricks give proxy to stumps. When ball hits the prop that means the striker has to leave the bat,” they delighted realising that people take interest to study their regular game. Best are the rules that are presumed and have chances to change any moment of the game, more like a home-made recipe. They don’t need to toss as to which team would bat first because they strike on chance-by-chance basis.
Interestingly Gully cricket says that no player can be given ‘out’ if he hasn’t scored a single run and even the first ball ‘out’ is not considered. “Ofcourse we do have wides and no balls where wide add a run to score, no balls provides a free hit,” Harshit explained. Obviously batting plays the dominating role so everyone wants to bat atleast once before breaking down a windowpane or any such object. And they bowl six balls per over, how many overs, varies with the number of kids and their ‘hours-of-leisure’.
Yes, this game is incomplete without fours and sixes. “We designate an object like a rock or tree as the boundaries for fours and when the ball gets out of boundary wall or out of sight adds a six to the score,” the kids said. They delegate fielder’s responsibility to a newcomer or the youngest kid who chases the ball inarguably.
Who would not love to play a game which is not captain-ed by anyone and which doesn’t need even an umpire or spectators? At the time of conflict on ‘out and not out’ either they depend upon the players who are already out and watching the game or a vendor across the street who occasionally watched and commented on their performance, gets the authority to decide. If none of the ideas work, they simply end the match to begin a new one next day. As simple as that! “There are many rules that are made and trashed every day, we can’t tell about all the rules as we don’t remember. But we can play till the time we are bone-tired,” the kids giggled.
The game usually ends with a broken windowpane or a fight or missing the ball. Cricket might be the gentlemen’s game, but gully cricket is for real tough kids. So grab a bat or any approximation of it and get on the Gully to play Gully Cricket.
By:Rashmi Drolia


Anonymous said...

nice time for the cric talk as cricket fever is on with the starting of IPL..a real good show ,what exactly a gully cricket is? and how much all strata of society are affected by GULLY CRICKET...keep writing and keep hitting wishes

Anonymous said...

I have read ur previous post criticizing IPL for transforming game to entertainment. Now this one is a nice extension of the previous thought. Why cricket is called life line of INDIA?

best regards