Interview of Cricket Fans – 134
J – Thank you for your participation in this interview, what is your earliest memory of this game?
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to interact with you Jay.
I started watching cricket from the 96 World Cup. I started watching cricket due to my father. He introduced me to Cricket and other sports. Coming back to the memory. I was fascinated with the coloured clothing and lighted stadium. I was excited to watch Sachin play and the way he played in that tournament made me his fan. I loved watching him play the glorious straight drives against Australia in Wankhede The final overs smashing at Kotla on his way to 137. The attacking style he adapted in the semi-final. These are my initial memories of this beautiful game.
J – Which Cricketer did you idolize growing up?
I idolized Sachin Tendulkar. I loved the way he played the game with dedication. The way he adapted his style of play whenever he was out of form. The way he used to play attacking shots against fast bowler used to fascinate me, sometimes I used to imitate his shots but failed miserably as well. One thing I liked the most about him is his humbleness. Never seen him react arrogantly or with disrespect to any opponent or teammate. When he retired in 2013, I stopped watching Cricket for a while.
J – What is the impact of T20 Cricket in other formats of the game?
The biggest impact I think is the big scores we are seeing in ODIs. The batting has become more attacking. The run chases are approached differently now. Earlier 120 runs to win in last 10 overs used to be unthinkable but now it’s possible.
J – Have you been fortunate enough to watch an international match live from the stadium? If yes, tell us your experience of any match.
Yes, have been to few matches at Kotla. My most favourite moment was the first match I saw. It was the 2008 3rd test between India and Australia, the last series of Dada. I reached the stadium early and after reaching the stadium, was happy to see the Indian players practice, I was delighted to see my favourite players from so close for the first time. Gambhir and Laxman made big hundreds. Remember Gambhir and Watson had exchanged few words. Plus cheering Dada, Dada. Then the farewell lap of honour for Kumble.
Another one I cherish is watching the 2013 IPL match between DD and MI. Sachin, Rohit scoring fifties then Sehwag and Mahela came all guns blazing to chase the total down. This one is more special because It was the only match me and Dad watched from the stadium.
J – Which is your favourite format of the game, and why?
I love Test matches as it gives equal opportunity to bowlers and batsman. The contest excites me. The turnarounds, the grind by the batsman comeback by bowlers. The true test of skills and calibre of a player is tested in this format.
J – How much do the youngsters in the Indian unit benefit from playing in the IPL?
The youngsters have got the exposure of playing with and against international greats like De Villiers, Malinga, Warner which has given them the self-belief and exposure of playing against the big names. Self-confidence was evident in the way we won the recent series in Australia. We have a very good set of confident and talented players in the waiting to get a chance to wear the colours and shine in the field.
J – Thoughts on the ICC Test Championship? What are the changes that you would like to see for the next series?
It’s a great initiative by ICC to plan this tournament. It makes every series more competitive. The Covid made ICC alter the qualification system.
I would like to suggest ICC that they should introduce bonus points or additional points system for Away series victories.
J – Your thoughts on Cricket Twitter?
Cricket Twitter is the only community in Twitter where some saneness is still left. I have got to know some very knowledgeable people like you Vipul Yadav, Deepak Khurana, Ritesh Sharma, Anurag Rekhi, Nikhil Popat, Anju Rawat, Paridhi Srivastava, Priya, Arnab Da, North Stand Gang and many more whose tweets I love to read.
J – What is your all-time XI?
Irrespective of any format below is my XI comprising of my favourites :-
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