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Friday, February 09, 2007

Pain-y Rain at Eden Gardens

I came to know that I will be a part of the washed away match just the night before India took Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens Stadium, Kolkata on 8th February, 2007. My daddy offered me two tickets and asked me to take my friend Gaurav to see the match. My sixth sense said the night before that the match will be washed away by rain the next day and so it did.

So before going to the match, I wrote a short message in my orkut about me area. I wrote, "Today all eyes are on Eden Gardens, Kolkata. I will be there with Gaurav. Hope you all see me on television supporting India and DADA. Whenever the camera focuses towards the crowd, search for me." I had even sms-ed my special friends to see me on television cheering for India and DADA.

Frankly speaking I went there to see DADA (Sourav Ganguly) score his first century at Eden Gardens. I personally have no faith for Greg Chappell and Rahul Dravid and have no interest in seeing a cricket match which has these two so called great people. But the Weather Gods had a different story to tell.

I was there by 1.30pm and sat on the gallery when the giant screen read "WELCOME TO EDEN GARDENS". All the players were practicing before the match. I saw almost all the Indian players and some of the Sri Lankan players whom I could identify.

The match started, and all were enjoying the match. Suddenly after the 18.3 overs when Sri Lanka was 102 for 3 wickets, it began to rain and it continued for 1 hour and a half. The field was turned into a big swimming pool. Some of the people left the stadium but most of the people stayed back till the last decision of the authorities was declared. Few minutes before the rain our Honourable Chief Minister, Shri Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee arrived and he was warmly welcomed on the giant screen.

It took the field workers 3 to 4 hours to dry the field, using only one super sopper machine and a dozed sponges, but unfortunately the match was called off disappointing the 1 lakh cricket lovers present there.

It was a shame that the authorities kept us waiting till 8.30pm by writing a message on the giant screen saying "Match suspended due to rain" and "Next inspection at 8.30pm". The enthusiastic spectators (aroung 70,000 people) remained there till 8.30pm when the last message came that "Match called off".

Seeing this the crown got furious and started booing Prasun Mukherjee (the new CAB President and Police Commissioner, Kolkata) and his team for inadequate match infrastructure and for keeping them waiting till 8.30pm from 4.00pm. The match started at 2.30pm. Some said that the wait was deliberately done so that people do not charge their money back from the CAB.

There were boos for Rahul Dravid too, for not letting India bat after winning the toss. Else, the people could have watched DADA score at least a half century.

Even the prices of food was comparable to the best restaurants and the quality and quantity was comparable to the food in a famine struck state. Packets of chips were 40 rupees, egg roll was around 26 rupees, which made the middle class people raise their eye-brows. Tea was served 15 rupees per cup.

I saw a man getting angry with the authorities for serving water pouch packs that were made in Orissa. He wanted to say that, "Was the condition of the people of Bengal so poor that they have to import water from Orissa?"People had to spend 15 rupees for a single pouch of water.

Our gallery had shade over us, but the rain was so intense and the shade was too weak to hold the rain that poured making all the people present there get wet in no time.

I personally felt that if China could build big indoor stadiums for their 2010 Olympics, then why can't India do the same for our cricket loving people at Eden and elsewhere in India? At present BCCI and CAB should gift the people of Kolkata by upgrading Eden Gardens to an Indoor Stadium.

My 10th sense tells me that it will take over 2 decades to understand the need and implement them, by the authorities. By then it would be too late for people of my age to watch a cricket match as live at Eden Gardens, may be.

1 comment:

Swarup said...

U knw wht?????U r 2 good at blogging.I luv to read urs.Carry on d good work Vajju.Kip smiling n kip blogging.

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