Friday, April 01, 2011

Cricket in the time of Facebook
This is first World Cup Cricket (WCC) on Facebook and it's a different kind of excitement as we see the changing face of community viewing! The fact that Cricket is in the DNA of our country needs no better manifestation - you may love it or hate it but you cannot ignore it! You need not be following the all the matches and need not know who is in the team but it somehow enters your system because we all breathe the same air. Some interesting updates on Facebook during/after the India-Pakistan match which made the experience a different one, here's a random pick (with sporting spirit and in a lighter vein)

"2011WC is a study of modes of transport. Aussie sent home via flight, Pak via Road, and now Sri Lanka's turn on saturday to take the ship." Ashish Tiwari

"‎#IndvsPak #Mohali a good match. Terrific win and Thanks to invisible security people who kept it free of incidence." Ashish Tiwari
"yessssssssssssssssssssss, i wish there was a scream button on fb." Brunda Murthy
"Nehra Nehra Karo jeet ka rang gehra!!!" Rosemeen Khimani
"Spare a thought for the man behind the success of Team India- Gary Kirsten !!!" Vinod Sharma
"Joke of the Day- Team India has done what Indian Intelligence agencies couldnt do ........ Keep Pakistan out of Mumbai."Vinod Sharma
‎"2003 avenged! :) Australia knocked out! :D" Dhurjati Bhattacharyya
But then, Facebook also had those irritating ball-by-ball updates, which were more frustrating and less cheering and some comments disgraceful to the game itself and potentially harmful and ugly. However, what is interesting in the phenomenon is the 'virtual community' of 'friends' sharing updates and commenting though not watching together at the same time and in the same space...on the positive side.
Cut to the first world cup victory by India: I have vague memories of 1983 Prudential Cup won by Kapil Dev's men in white. Then, there was no blue, no merchandise and TV was just evolving as a 'virtual stadium'. We watched it on our first TV - a B/W Dyanora. And the game was less aggressive unlike the  terminators, destroyers and eliminators of today.
One reason why I remember that match was because it was important to know everything about it for any GK quiz. Memorably, the score was 183 and the year 1983 (some connection between the year and the score?) On a superstitious note, any clues for this year's final match? Ok, let me not link the year and score, using this equation/speculation this year the score could be 211 (from the year 2011)...and that's not an encouraging figure against Sri Lanka, assuming India bats first.
Now, I've another superstition, about this year's world cup: after I purchased the new TV and I was particular about buying it during the WCC, I was happy to see that India got three consecutive wins (against West Indies, Australia and Pakistan) and will it repeat against Sri Lanka?
Now move to 2015, the next WCC to be jointly hosted by Australia and Newzealand. It's difficult to imagine how Facebook or other such social tools would change the face of the game. Imagine with 4G and beyond, and Internet TV and all that. Would be all be watching the match on the Internet like a virtual stadium. I'm sure today's buttons on FB wil l be a thing of the past. How many other apps would be there to make the game a techno-gizmo-wonder? Till then, let's hope that 1983 repeats after 28 years!

1 comment:

Rosemeen said...

Yes! Thanks for sharing Madhuri and keep the blogs coming!