If there is something that can provide immense pleasure to a cricket enthusiast, it is the beginning of an exhilarating Test cricket series between 2 top class cricketing nations. India is playing Australia in Australia. Both nations have created unforgettable cricketing moments in the past. Be it the 2001, Laxman – Harbhajan series in India or be it the surreal double hundred from Clarke during the 2000th Test match held at Sydney. But, this 4 match test series will be completely different than any of the previous series between the two countries.
The series has a lot a of feelings attached to it even before it has started. Australia have declared their favorite son, Phillip Hughes as the 13th man for the 1st Test @ Adelaide. Emotions will run high during the toss and may be throughout the game. We will have players standing in silence for a couple of minutes, spectators looking towards to sky to pay another respect to the young chap and digital screens showcasing what a fine young cricketer Phillip Hughes was. It will be a tough day for the Hughes family. It will be a tough day for Australia.
During the same time in the other hemisphere, on a very cold foggy morning, in a small house in Delhi the scene will be a little different. There will be tea served to the guests visiting the house in varied color sweaters. Chairs shall be arranged for the guests to witness the toss. A very humble family will wake up at 5:00am just to see their son walk out wearing the classic navy blue Oxford boy blazer lead Indian National Test Cricket Team for the first time ever! Yes, Virat Kohli will lead the India @ Adelaide. Sometimes, life just gives you the moments that make you feel that you were defined for greatness or that you are the chosen one. Probably, Virat will go through the same emotion. He got his 1st overseas hundred @ Adelaide and it has been an amazing journey since then. What a feeling to lead your nation at the same venue as your first overseas hundred! If you don’t understand the feeling, ask a kid who is just about to play his 1st under-15 match for his club. On previous Australian tours, India performed decently under Azharuddin, excelled under Ganguly, played spiritedly under Kumble and was dismissive under Dhoni. Our wait on what a young Kohli can bring to the table is just over.
Amidst the political drama in the state of West Bengal, Wriddhiman Saha will don the gloves for India. It will be an emotional morning even for the Saha’s who stay in Siliguri in West Bengal. The last time Saha kept for India was in Adelaide in January 2012. Saha has developed as a cricketer since then. It was fascinating to see him grow in the IPL and it will be interesting to see how well he adapts to the test cricket circuit. With Dhoni geared up to play the 2nd test, Saha will be looking to leave a mark and knock the doors of Indian selectors, one more time.
The previous time India played against Australia was with Gambhir, Dravid, Tendulkar and Harbhajan. Indian cricket has gone through one of its biggest transitions since then. Dravid and Tendulkar have retired, Gambhir and Harbhajan are struggling with their careers and, Zak and Sehwag are dropped. The morning at Adelaide will be an emotional affair even for an Indian spectator. Yes, our emotions will search for Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar. We will remember our time as a kid when we woke up at 5:00 am on cold mornings to see Tendulkar bat. The game will go on and as an Indian supporter we should give a strong chance to the young Indian team that takes the field.
I will wake up pretty early to pay respect to Phillip Hughes and to be a part of the National Anthem of both the countries. But a little more than that to witness a fresh India take the field with their new captain. The next morning, probably I shall wake up pretty early again, this time just to see another young Indian player score a hundred at Adelaide. Yes, it is always special when India plays Australia. This time the romance just got a little dramatic and emotional.