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Monday, February 04, 2008

Adieu Shaun Pollock

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Watching Shaun Pollock holding back tears while giving his farewell speech last night after the SA-WI 5th ODI brought tears to my eyes as well. He was a gentleman on the field. A realization had occurred that cricketers of our generation are fast disappearing. Pollock had bowled his last ball last night. Gilchrist have another 15 days before hanging up his gloves.

Warne is gone. So is McGrath, Lara & Inzy – all these great revelers of our time had retired in the last 12 months. Only a handful now remains. But even the likes of Jayasurya, Sachin, Dravid and Ganguly are fast approaching their final days.

We had probably failed to realize that it is not only us who had crossed into the late 30s, but the cricketers as well who has been part of our life for last 15 years. It is a fact that most people in our age group no more watch cricket as ardently as they used to do some 15 years back. That was the time when we would hardly move from the television room until the last ball is bowled. The hourly drinks break provided toilet breaks for us. Now we hardly watch a full day’s cricket. In fact I do not remember when I had watched a full days cricket on TV last time. The golden era of cricket has probably been over.

Even though we are not addicted to cricket anymore, we still follow it. These are the bunch of guys whom we love to hate at times and then admire most of the time. New guys are getting inducted into most of the teams to replace these all time greats. But if you look at most teams, there is little promise. Look at the replacements for Pakistan and India. These new generation players may be talented, but not at par with the ones they are replacing. There will never be another Pollock, Gilchrist, Sachin, Lara, Inzamam, McGrath or Warne. We will certainly miss them.

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