They went to Ireland down and out- written off, forgotten by their fans, away from the radar of the media. And then, all it took was a 2-1 drubbing of the Proteas in Belfast and the "Team India" was on its road to recovery- the road to fame again.
Then came England and by this time, the media had got excited- again, the newspapers and Television were discussing cricket- again, and "expectation" was back- again. The Mighty Four were on their last full tour to England and all of a sudden, none wanted to miss the spectacle. Cricket was back, forgotten for just a while, but back in all its glory; much like one of its own disciples whom we all know as Dada. The nation was believing again, so much so, that by the time the first test ended at Lord's, the Rain God had himself intervened in the interest of this born-again "faith".
The Indians celebrate Andrew Strauss' wicket, England v India, 2nd Test, Trent Bridge, 4th day, July 30, 2007 © AFP
With victory in sight in the Second test, amidst all the hoopla around Sreesanth theatrics, Zahir's fondness(?) for jelly beans and the the umpiring, all I'll say is that it feels great to be back in the good old days where Cricket is the uniting force of the nation, where a victory makes us Indians feel Indians. You know sanity has returned to the country when you can simply start a conversation with a stranger at the bus stop on everything and anything involving Cricket- Sehwag or no Sehwag?, Dada or Dravid?, the umpiring blues and all!
Cricket India in England Ganguly Sreesanth Zaheer