20th November 2013
The nation was caught in the frenzy of election results. The early trends were starting to emerge, people were desperate to get updates from everywhere they could. Twitter was abuzz with #NepalVotes , Facebook walls filled with tree, sun, spade and cow among others. The biggest party prior to the election was losing, new leaders were being born. The country seemed destine to think only election for at least a week. Alas, just then the cricket arrived and everything went for a toss. No longer did the votes count in Kathmandu-10 sound interesting. #NEPvNED was quickly emerging as the trending topic in the twitter. The people all had something or the other to let them know the score. A notion entered almost everyone’s heart “A party may win the election but its the country which wins the cricket matches”. Then and there was the moment a common man found his real cricket.
5th May 2013
At around 3 am in the “night” Nepal was waiting the result of a USA v Bermuda match. The computer screen and the mobiles all over the country tried its best to make him believe it was 6th May already but he wouldn’t care. He hadn’t slept and wouldn’t do it until he “makes Bermuda beat USA”. And when the moment finally arrived, he did everything he could at that hour to enjoy the moment. The common man finally slept deciding it was only because he woke up that Bermuda beat USA.
27th November 2013
The day everyone cried for his cricket. If anyone denies it, he is definitely telling a lie.
It was not always like this, though. Almost a decade and half ago, when Nepal cricket was at its infancy, it was nothing more than just a sport taken up by the elites. Almost a fancy game played only by the ones who could afford bat, ball, stumps and god knows what else. The common man got obsessed with cricket much later and when they did, oh boy, everything else took a backseat.
Today an international match brings the nation and primarily its youth into a standstill. The biggest Facebook group in the country is approaching a 6-digit mark. The world wants to know what Nepalese cricket exactly is and its all because of the common man. The same common man who wakes up at 3 just to follow a practice match. The same common man who paints his forehead with Nepalese and cheers for his country at 40°c heat in Sharjah. The same common man who has torn his pants while getting into the TU Ground to watch a match. The same common man who has been made fun of in international forum of social medias for claiming his country as best. And yes the same common man who gets his mobile recharged just before a match starts.
The common man has his complains, too. He knows Nepalese cricket much more than cricket in general. He feels offended when people much familiar with cricket make fun of him. As much as he tries to, he simply cant convince the guy that Nepal can beat India. At the end, he somehow agrees to that “expert” but deep down he knows he will prove that guy wrong someday. And you know, how illogical he might sound, his passion and support is unquestionable. That mass of people are precisely the reason why Nepalese cricket has reached this far.
The common man may not know the history of Nepalese cricket but what he knows is that its future is a part of him. If five years ago anyone would have predicted that a cricket match would bring the country into a standstill, he would have been laughed off. And to think, it actually happened in the day of the election results. For me that was the moment that signaled Nepalese cricket has changed for ever. and its all because of – let me quote a dialogue from a famous movie – the bloody common man!!