Cricket tales

30 Aug

I’m Aditya, Vijay’s long-suffering younger brother.

By “long-suffering” I don’t mean to imply that Viji is some sort of an ogre. Quite the reverse. He is a nurturing older sibling that anyone would be lucky to have. But truth be told, back in the day he had a nasty competitive streak when it came to playing sports with me. Perhaps it’s just his nature, or perhaps it was payback for all those times that I got my way over him by playing the “I’m eleven years younger than you” card. We played cricket, table tennis and badminton. No quarter was asked and none was given. It didn’t help my cause that he was a talented athlete who excelled at all sports he tried. I had my hands full.

We played “short cricket” on our concrete driveway at home. After a while, much to Viji’s annoyance, I became quite adept at sticking it out while batting. So began his quest for creative ways of getting me out. First, there was the surprise, fast bouncer with Viji tearing in behind the ball looking for the sharp return catch, then there was the tantalizing slow turner that turned a full two feet from way outside off to middle and never failed to tie me up in knots, and then there was the sidearm, fast, swinging yorker. But the most dangerous of all was the “fizzer”: A tennis or cork ball rolled (surreptitiously) in a puddle of water and delivered rapidly from a distance of about 15 feet. It rose and fizzed alarmingly particularly when one was not expecting it (which was always). I can still feel those painful blows on my arm, shin and thighs. Ouch. But I persisted. One ball and one run at a time.

Unbeknownst to either of us, Viji was preparing me for the “real world” that was to come all too soon: A world that requires one to stand and fight for each “run”. A world that makes little allowance for being young. I certainly got a head start in that department. And so, some twenty years later, I say “Thanks Vij”


2 Responses to “Cricket tales”

  1. Vijay August 30, 2006 at 2:41 pm #

    My only intention was getting you out.. still remember the 50 odd you scored.. REALLY ticked me off…

  2. Veena Shivanna December 21, 2006 at 12:24 pm #

    Honestly the cricket doesn’t interest me much , I shuld say can’t demand my crazy attention. I read between paragraph!

    Great to see your brother on your blog as a visiting professor.. I have an younger brother , he is 9.5 years younger than me.. incidently my elder brother & younger brother almost have the age difference of 11years.
    Fun having brothers around you.. I love everthing that I do with them & for them.. Atleast somebody who can tolerate me very well..
    Tribute to brotherhood.. Is there any day called Brothers day? 🙂

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