Sunday, February 17, 2019
Updated: Sunday, August 03, 2003
A Nation That Loves Cricket

Abdur Quaderi
The headline is not created by me. It is an statement that has been uttered by one of the Australian commentators during the 1st ODI at Cairns, Queensland. Cairns is the major city in northern Australia that had a capacity crowd (or almost full capacity....) during the 1st ODI.

The response from the Australian public has been overwhelming. I was quite surprised to see that Bangladeshi cricketers receiving such attention. In Darwin, Mashrafee Mortaza became almost a STAR. He received a title there ? NARAIL EXPRESS.

Earlier, Alok Kapali became a star when his photo was published in Baggygreen and remained there for a while. The name of Tapash Baisya was also discussed. Habibul Bashar was already known in the cricket circles. Hannan Sarkar surprised the Australians with his skills and abilities. Yes, these stars were born in Australia, so to say.

Australian commentators and cricket specialists knew Bangladesh would not be competitive against the mighty Australian cricketers ? the world champions. What they did not know was the fact that the minnows would suddenly sparkle and show courage and fight. It is this fighting spirit that has been highlighted by the Australian commentators and journalists.

Well done Bangladesh. Yes, the Bangladeshi cricketers have impressed the Australians with their attitude to learn, attitude to fight and the attitude to accept a big challenge. These attitudes, when combined, become NEWS. And news attract large crowds?

Back to ?a nation that loves cricket?. That?s a nice name. A nice label, so to say. Let?s guess what can happen to a nation of 130 million people who love cricket. Today we have 11 cricketers and they have been selected from approximately 100,000 players (just guessing) who PLAY cricket. Remembering the rule of multiplication combined by the rule of emotion, 10 years later we will have the same number of 11 cricketers. But they will be selected from a pool of 1,000,000 players who would play cricket then. I try to imagine what will happen at that time?..

Yes, it?s a nice feeling to know I belong to a country of 130 million people who love cricket. A nice name. A nice feeling. A wonderful new image.

Thank you Australia. Thanks for those nice words.