By Partha Pratim Chandra
Kolkata, May 3, 2012 (Washington Bangla Radio) It’s wartime in Kolkata. In a scorching heat of 40 degree Celsius Kolkata stands in a queue for ticket to watch the war, organizers are getting tons of requests for free tickets. Blackers are happy to give you a ticket in a price enough to give you a heart attack.
Now don’t start sweating, the war in Kolkata is not with drone bombs and shells, it’s about cricket. That too a half sized cricket match of 120 balls. On 5th may the war (read Cricket Match) on Eden Garden is not bound to the field any more. Media hype, love for cricket vs love for entertainment, self dignity of the whole Bengali race, each of these interwoven aspects has created a hullabaloo situation out of a mere cricket match. Now it’s not of 22 yards anymore. It’s a war between Shahrukh Khan and Sourav Ganguly. That’s the reason he 5th may match has become an S Classico match. Where the two S represent the two Titans of Indian Cricket Sourav and Shahrukh. Both sides believe they will get the support at Eden Gardens. The Bangladeshi Knight Saquib Al Hassan has taken the debate a bit further with his remark that Eden will support the Knights because they represent Kolkata, But Dada fans has just chuckled over the remark and has taken the policy of wait and see. Even the social Networking sites are also bursting with anxiety over the match. Going through the scraps and comments makes you dizzy; is it really a cricket match or a three hour WW III.
Problems in Metro, overcrowded buses, Kolkata has forgotten everything, to prepare for the Pune Warriors and Kolkata Knight Riders match. It’s acting as the Oasis or life blood of Kolkata. Kolkata burnt the effigy of Shahrukh on the day Sourav was made to put down the skipper position of KKR. Then Shahrukh dropped Sourav from the team. For Kolkata the Superstar became a super villain on the very day. On the 4th IPL Bidding no one called for Sourav, no one took him in, and the reason? For Kolkatans, it was one and only Sharukh to blame. Then the situation turned just like a good thriller film script. Nehra was out of the team due to injury, so Pune Warriors needed a replacement cricketer, inevitably the one and only choice was Sourav. A few days later, Yubhraj unfortunately succumb to Cancer, and then Sourav was the only choice for the post of mentor and skipper of the team. People of Kolkata was waiting from the day on for this day only when their beloved Dada will take on KKR. It’s the clash of the Titans, one is the undisputed leader of 22 yards, and the other is the King of Entertainment. Now that day is near, when Sourav will be playing away match at home ground. Fate plays such a delicate game! Whatever the expert comment say, heart says, on the fateful day of 5th may, 90 percent of the gallery will support Dada. One boundary or over boundary from his bat will make people to cross the noise limit of the city. The 10 percent KKR supporters will just wait for the end of the game, one of my friend will be among the 10 percent, the blind fan of Shahrukh; he thinks it’s only business for sharukh, but my friend, which agenda of business allows you to make money after you kick out our own icon, when you are doing the business of representing the city itself. Dada fans says, Sharukh will only inderstand after this event, that you cannot win a 22 yard match by just throwing kiss from Corporate box, you have to win it like a true warrior just like Sourav. That’s why I mentioned earlier that the situation has become so much tensed and scattered, that’s why this is an S classico match entwined with Media hype and self dignity of the whole Bengali race. The phone rang again, another request for 5th May ticket, this is Kolkata, the city madly in love with excitement.