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Saturday, June 30, 2007 

Try Ball

Yaar maine pehle hi bol diya tha, umpire se pooch le.

Yaar me pagal hu kya ki pehli ball par aisa shot khelunga

Mujhe laga ki “try ball hai”…

And so it begins! Many a legendary bowlers have come up with innovations: the doosra’s, the magic ball, the floaters, the beamers. But hats off to the gentleman who came up with this innocent novel idea called the try ball.

Cricket has gone through sea changes, so much has been improved and modified over the last 100 years and more. But this concept has a special place in every little street where the game breeds. For years this has been used over and over again, but I have always been mystified by the existence of the try ball. Why did it start and what real purpose did it solve. As you come to think of it you realise that the try ball can mean different things in different scenarios.

Scenario 1: the one described in the first three lines. When someone gets out of the first ball of a match he uses the try-ball card to bail himself out. If people agree to it then way to go…if people don’t this guy often has another oft repeated idea – ‘yaar shuru se khelte hain nayi team baant ke’. If other players reject this proposal as well, then keep an eye on this guy, his mummy will call him back very soon.

Scenario 2: bhaiyya bhaiyya me bhi ball daalunga. Kaisi bowling karta hai tu pace ya slow?...bhaiyya me batta pace daal lunganahi batta pace allowed nahi haiacha theek hai batta spin karungaacha dekhte hain kahin tu zada tez to nahi phek raha, le ek try ball daal….

Scenario 3: this usually takes lead from a last evening fight over a no ball decision. It’s a new game today, but just to irritate the other guy, the bowler, the batsman shouts as the bowler is running in…oye ye try ball hai.

Scenario 4: yaar bohot time ho gaya khele hue, u knw IITJEE ki tayyari ke time chhod diya tha maine cricket khelna to ab practice me nahi hu, waise to me apni colony ka captain tha…zara do chaar try ball kara de…

There maybe more such incidents, but the try ball definitely doesn’t look good from these examples. Let me put what I think could be the best use of the try ball. It is in everyway only to gauge the bounce of the pitch or whatever the game is being played on rather than judging the bowlers strength. Any bowler is smart enough not to go full throttle with a try ball. For the bowler it is an opportunity to get the body moving get the stepping right and ensure that there is no unwarranted swing.

As I moved from school to IIT, the try ball was taken over by elaborate and tiring net sessions. For two hours five days a week I was there, running in endlessly even if my captain told me not to. This trend was more prominent by the way when I was trying to get into the team. As the cricket became more serious, the try-ball became a bigger joke.

As I sit preparing for my GMAT next week, the concept of the try-ball draws me to itself more and more. The mocks have now taken place of the try ball. Hell the try ball is not easy to score off(smile). But in my case I think I am exercising Scenario 4 here. You know I have never appeared for CAT. Just did some preparation for fun in 4th year. My maths was always good you know but even that I am not in practice. Otherwise I cracked a 93 percentile in GATE. Please give me some mock GMATs (buhu buhu).

But the fact of the matter is that try ball is a bit like the building block to bigger things. It’s the alphabet that we learn on the street or the parks which transpires into words and sentences at Inter IITs. The try ball is and will remain the very basic education every cricketer needs. Even if it is a concept that largely invokes laughter and giggles, but what the heck! We play for fun don’t we? And this is one of the most innocent forms of humour on the cricket field. You decide for yourself what will you like to see Sachin Tendulkar do when he gets out the first ball? You want to see him pretend that the ball stayed low and he actually rammed the bat in his crouch? Or would you like to see him take off his helmet and tell Shoaib Akhtar – ‘yaar maine pehle bol diya tha……


oh the last paragraph was an absolute gem and this one "It’s the alphabet that we learn on the street or the parks which transpires into words and sentences at Inter IITs"... the icing on the cake :)

Probably your best post ever, loved it. ROTFL. Funny, and best of luck. Like they say it here in IIMC, put crack (dont know exactly what it means, but I guess it means something like fod dena). And well, try ball par out hone ke baad century ( or maybe 800) maarne kaa mazaa hee kucch aur hai.

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