The usually traffic snarling roads in Delhi were empty on Monday. The odd people in the cricket loving country were wondering for the reasons. Few minutes close to 9 p.m there were bright fireworks on the capital’s dark sky. It was accompanied by rhythmic beatings of dhoolaks matched by bhangara and all forms of body movements. Chake de india! was the common greetings doing the rounds with a lavish distribution of sweets. The occasion was not to celebrate diwali or to welcome the Lord. Ram’s army home but to enjoy the triumph of Dhoni’s men in the first ever twenty 20 world cup. The fairytale final against its archrival Pakistan was bone chilling.
Winning the toss, Mahendra Singh Dhoni decided to bat according to the pre-decided script. The start was shaky. The sudden replacement for Virender Shewag – Yusuf Pathan was unable to run promptly between the wickets. Pakistani fielders were quick to throw the ball at the stumps immediately after it was hit. Million hearts got broken till the screen boarded displayed “not out”. The loud cheering sound of 32,000 spectators in Johannesburg must have tensioned Yusuf who was playing for the first time in an international match. Then he recovered from the initial moments of pressure and nervousness. He hit the ball for a six and announced his entry with a big bang. Unfortunately he could not stay for a long time. After scoring fifteen runs in eight balls, Pathan exited. Robin Uthappa, Yuvaraj Singh and the Captain Dhoni followed his way. Gautam Gambhir in association with Rohit Sharma pushed the total of the Indian team to a decent number. In the final count, India scored 157 for 5 at the rate of 7.85 per over. Umar Gul bowled in a disciplined way for Pakistan claiming three wickets in four overs giving twenty eight runs.
It was a reachable target for the determined Pakistan team with full of young energy and combating skills. Rudra Pratap Singh opened the Indian bowling attack. To everyone’s expectations he struck in the very first over to claim Mohammed Hafeez’s wicket. Hafeez returned to pavilion after Robin Uthappa caught him brilliantly. Soon, Kamran Akmal was bowled out by R.P.Singh. The run making of Pakistan team was slow and the wicket loss was fast. Shoaib Malik the Captain and Shahid Afridi the expected performers disappointed after falling quickly to the Indian attack. Younis Khan and Mishab-ul-Haq redeemed the lost hope of their team. Both of them stabilized and started giving jitters to the men in blue. In the seventeenth over, Mishab hit three sixes consequectively off the Harbhajan’s over. The tables were turned towards Pakistani side. Dhoni signaled Harbhajan to bowl off side and at the edge of the crease. This sudden diversion of concentration gave Pakistan 30 crucial runs. The final over was due. Joginder Sharma was getting to ready to decide the fate of the match. A wide and a six narrowed down the victory target of Pakistan. The third ball was bowled with all hope lost. The lady luck suddenly turned towards the Indian side and landed the ball into the hands of Sreesanth. Billion people jumped over to celebrate the victory of the Indian team.
It was 24 years after the win in the prudential cup, india won the first ever Twenty 20 world cup on 24th September. Is 24 a just number coincidence or numerological victory? Whatever may be the argument, the cricket lovers of the subcontinent are completely overjoyed. Thanks to the Dhoni’s army for giving a billion population a reason to be happy.