Perhaps the billion prayers worked. For India won the semi-final against Pakistan in this year’s Cricket World Cup. And then again, perhaps prayer had no role to play. Perhaps it was just that the team that played better and held its nerve on the day won.
But was it war at Mohali? Was it a life and death battle? One that determined the fate of the world? Not quite.
Will yesterday’s match, its result and the accompanying ‘cricket diplomacy’ solve all the puzzles that divide India and Pakistan? I would like to be optimistic and say ‘yes’, but I’m not so sure.
As Prem Panicker writes in this piece on Yahoo! - “The problems that confront us are too serious; their roots, nourished with the blood of so many innocents on both sides, go down too deep, for a mere game to set it all to rights — and those that pretend otherwise, including the holders of the highest offices in the land, do us all a disservice by trivializing these problems when they should be working to find lasting solutions for them.”
But in a world where hype often masquerades as reality, the spin machine forges ahead regardless; reality be dammed. So it will be enlightening to see how the spinmeisters position Saturday’s World Cup final between India and Sri Lanka.
Meanwhile, let’s try to remember that it’s just another match. Yes, it is the final of the cricketing world’s showpiece event, but it’s still just another match.