Outline: I had no interest in cricket; a friend forced me to witness a test match – I was bored — by the game nothing was happening – cricket is a funny game, couldn't understand how people watch it patiently – the last phase of the match was exciting, I too caught the excitement

I was one of the few students in my school who showed an American lack of interest in cricket. When a Test Match was on in the city asked a cricket fan, “Which teams are playing?", and I remember the incredulous look he gave me, his astonishment at my appalling ignorance.

Once, when a Test Match between India and Australia was being played at Wankhede Stadium, a friend of mine bought a ticket for me and almost forced me to accompany him to the Stadium and the match. It was the last day of the match, and India had to make a hundred runs to win, with five wickets in hand. Thousands of spectators were eagerly watching the game.

There was breathless suspense and subdued excitement. witnessed the game for three long hours and nothing was happening. A wicket had fallen and sixteen runs or so had been added to India's score. Cricket is a funny game, I thought, invented by the British. Twenty-two players are needed for this game but only thirteen take part in it at a time. The remaining nine sit in the pavilion and do nothing, sometimes for hours on end. No other game in the world requires so much time as cricket—four or five days — and even then most of the cricket matches end in a draw Most of the time the bowler throws a hard ball at the batsman who strikes it with his bat and returns it to the bowler. No doubt there are some interesting moments when the batsman hits fours or sixers, but they are few and far between.

Yet, thousands of spectators patiently watch nothing happening at all for hours on end. To return to the Test Match I was witnessing, it went on in the same dull fashion for an hour after lunch. yawned and listened listlessly to my friend's comments and finally fell into a doze. I was suddenly jerked out of my drowsiness by a chorus of yells and applause around me. I found that the Indian batsmen were repeatedly hitting the ball beyond the boundary line. The score had soared to 80. The batsmen playing — I was told that they were Sachin Tendulkar and Saurav Ganguly- had come to the rescue of India's side. There was tremendous excitement in the Stadium and every stroke with the bat was greeted with applause.

Finally India made more than a hundred runs and won the match, the applause and yelling reached their climax. The excitement was infectious and I could not help catching it. beamed with thrill and admitted to my friend that cricket was a fascinating game.

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