Because it is World Cup

There are many World Cups that I have liked, but as far as cricket World Cups are concerned, I feel that I am going to like the 2019 World Cup more than the others. The main reason is that it will have no minnows and the games can only get better. Yes, we are love an upset and cheer when underdogs win. But when they are ruthlessly trashed by the opponents on too many occasions and they also make us wonder about the quality of the game, it is not case.

It is a forward step by the International Cricket Council, and I would like to welcome it. There is no need to add more and more teams which can’t play good enough cricket just to increase the number of teams and to let certain cricketers score centuries and get easy wickets. The players who can never hit an overseas century or can’t score more than a run-a-ball against the good teams might find this interesting, but otherwise, it is not a good idea to increase the number of teams.

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Talking about the lesser teams, they have to raise their level, and only then should they be allowed in the World Cup. After all, this is a cup featuring the best, and not just some dumb tournament. It should be like, prove yourself and get in. For a beginning, there can be just eight slots. Yes, you heard it right. There is too much miserable cricket going on right now, and some teams need to improve or perish. They shouldn’t take their test status as a guarantee, but just a compliment.

Only the top six ranked teams should be allowed straight into the World Cup, with number seven, eight, nine and ten made to play a qualifying tournament with the associate members. The total number of teams can be eight, with two teams from this competition joining the group of teams, putting them into two pools. Only top two teams from each group should qualify. As the number of matches do decrease, may be the teams can play each other twice and thus also make sure that more consistent team gets in.

The 2019 Cricket World Cup will have ten teams already there, among which only eight of the top ones having a clear place (including the hosts England). The rest will play in the 2018 Cricket World Cup Qualifier in Bangladesh which is only fair in making the game of cricket better and of a higher standard. If someone needs to score some runs of take a lot of wickets against the weaker teams, just be at the lower level of rankings – don’t bother the teams playing high standard cricket.

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There should be no matches without results. It doesn’t matter whether it rains or the lights go. There should be more than one reserve day. After all, it will be a tournament of the best then. May be Kenya can make a return here. Do you remember them coming second in their group and even doing enough to get into the semi-finals? There is no team like that now, and only the strong teams get stronger and hopes to destroy these teams with ease. So these teams should prove that they are at least as good as the last ranked test playing nations.

When the level of Zimbabwe has only gone down from the past, Bangladesh seems to be coming up with a big slap against the ICC which gave them the test status when they were not ready. The former has gone through some turbulent times, but it is time for them to come back and return to the competitive team that they had often been. The latter should do a lot better than this with the talent and the support of the fans – just defeating a test playing nation on World Cup is not enough. There will be improvement if these two teams are made to earn their place rather than being guaranteed the same.

*If you want to globalize cricket, you need to stop being selfish. It includes not using these teams as the means to score big runs, take wickets and attain huge victories. It doesn’t prove anything. Help them, provide them some assistance with training as well as money, and play some good practice matches with them. May be some of their players can have some chances in the IPL. Ireland is a team with so much potential – I hope one of these over hyped teams is thrown out and they get in for the next World Cup. May be after letting them play with a team like India A and manage to compete with them regularly and even defeat them, we can talk about a fourteen team or even twenty eight team Cricket World Cup with a big qualifier featuring half of the total teams. ***The images used in this blog post are from the Official Page of ICC Cricket World Cup on Facebook.

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TeNy

The College Days at UCC

This post is my entry for ‘My College Diary’ contest held by travel blog My Yatra Diary in collaboration with Collegedunia.com

There are not many memories that give me a better feeling than my days at Union Christian College, Aluva – where I attended for my MA English. I have been to other educational institutions for a longer period of time, but there was nothing like being in this college which had the most interesting days of my life. It was like each and every day was special, and had something new for me. I have always been a lazy person who hesitated to go for the classes, but everything changed and I came out of there as a different person.

I was always there to witness the first rays of the sun.

I was always there to witness the beautiful rays of the sun, very early.

There is something about learning English Literature in one of the oldest and the most reputed colleges in Kerala. With a green campus full of trees and having a number of old buildings of antique value which takes us to world beyond the busy traffic right outside the gate, being at UC College is a privilege that I never thought I would have, and for the same, I would like to thank God as I could get the admission by merit itself without any trouble, and that is one miracle that stays on my list forever.

UCC on a rainy day while reading romantic poetry!

UCC on a rainy day while reading romantic poetry! Nostalgia strikes!

We had our classes right on the block on the back side of the oldest building around, surrounded by trees and having a shortcut to the canteen. The first thing we notice there being the lines from Shelley’s Ode to the West Wind, “If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?”, I entered the classroom with doubts about what was next in my life. I was quite late for post-graduation, as I had changed my graduation to Literature after having my way with Computer Application.

Now you know where I parked my car :D

Now you know where I parked my car 😀 Loved parking it – was more like hiding it 😉

1. The Strangers’ Paradise: I entered this place, which was the paradise of strangers, a world which had students who had taken graduation from different colleges. There were eighteen including two of us boys, a number which decreased to thirteen by the final year. Most of them didn’t know each other, and what made me feel better was that nobody knew me at all. Being a stranger among strangers was fair, the right point to make an introduction. I could make the right impression, but still I ended up being just me, and thinking about it, that was the best thing that I did there – being myself.

That visual from our first year classroom and nearby.

That visual from our first year classroom and nearby; almost made me jump at times.

2. The Strength of Tea: The first thing I asked after getting there was about the canteen. Yes, the toilet and the library are significant, but there was the need for tea. Ever since finding the place, I was a regular visitor there, even meeting the teachers further there. It is the place which tells us that our teachers are awesome, over a cup of tea. We know our friends better at the canteen with the tea, and meet a lot more people there. We might still not know them directly, but it is a certainty that if we see them somewhere outside the college or on Facebook, we know who they are. I used to jump out of the classroom for the same reason, having a cup of tea between the hours.

Those steps under the chapel: a usual place.

Those steps under the chapel: a usual place, no matter what the time.

3. The Literary Power: The power of the library was clear right from the beginning, and I was clear about it before joining the college. We were blessed with a very old library which had a very good collection of literary works, but nothing new though. I used to make some frequent visits to library in the beginning, a habit which I somewhat abandoned as I could get the e-books in an easier way. But then, there was the idea of helping others to get the book – with canteen so close to the library, how could I not choose to go to the library? Cutlet and tea with books – a fair choice.

Those library cards on the final day of college.

Those library cards on the final day of college – one last look as I left.

4. Seminars of the World: A habit which soon developed was to go for literature based seminars at different colleges. Even as there were some of us going in the beginning, soon there was the practice of going together or staying at home so that there would be no class. But soon, some of the studious girls would develop the practice of going to the college to listen to the lectures based on syllabus, and I had to go alone or in smaller groups. But we got the attendance, and the classes rarely mattered to me as I had enough material to go through. The journeys on a Chevrolet Beat also started with these, making my car a regular visitor to the college.

A little more of the natural beauty to make you miss the place more.

A little more of the natural beauty to make you miss the place more.

5. Change of Perspective: The first few months had us taking down lecture notes as well as those which are provided to us. Then the situation changes to just writing down some random things, pretending to write and finally ends up not writing anything at all. Yes, there are the studious girls who got to write them, but we are people of the last bench. We know that it is not by what is taught in the classes that we are redeemed when the examinations arrive. We know that we have to read, and not accepting whatever is taught in a class; that is about having one’s own perspective.

Another beautiful, rainy day on the campus inspiring poetry.

Another beautiful, rainy day on the campus inspiring poetry.

6. The Quiz Surprise: Even as the things were going okay, nothing really made an impact like this surprise. There was the inter-college quiz competition for which I was told to go, just because there was the shortage of willing people; that was a nice journey, with two teams of us participating in the same, and myself and my partner winning the second prize. That was quite a turning point, with myself going to more of the competitions, with different partners – that was the beginning of the next phase which came only in the final year. I admired the department for the support here, and those who accompanied me for the competitions.

A screenshot from the college website at that time.

A screenshot from the UC college website at that time.

7. Political Extravaganza: Politics was banned for the first year I joined there as there were some bad incidents. But it came back with full power in the next year, with the Communist students wing SFI gaining most of the seats and the other Communist wing AISF coming so close. Congress’ KSU came right down and BJP’s ABVP managed one seat. It was not the result that caught my attention though, because it was the campaigning which has the beauty about it. There were thos nice artworks to support the parties as well as some cultural stuff. Who can forget those strikes which gave us more freedom?

A photo from the day before the election.

A photo from the day before the election.

8. Before Final Destination: Then came the season of trouble; the time for the final exams followed by the time dedicated for the thesis. There were lot of turbulence out there, especially concerning the studious girls, worried about the marks as well as how their thesis will look for others; but the rest of us were pretty sure that they will score high as usual and were just making a scene to bother us – that ended well. Among this maddening crowd, the thesis progressed fine,, and I am glad to say that I enjoyed working on my topic, and the support from the English Department was splendid.

Those final days of thesis; had to be the techie again.

Those final days of thesis; had to be the techie again and be the helping hand.

If I have the opportunity to go through all these, I would be glad to – it is that kind of a feeling that this college has left me with. It is not that I have never thought about it, and taking another post graduation in History would have been a perfect choice. But considering the fact that the syllabus has changed and so has the new generation, I would just end up being an outdated man, not old enough and yet not working well with the younger generation. So, I shall happily hold on to these memories which remain special for me.

A few things the elections brought for the college.

A few things the elections brought for the college; the area near the canteen.

Five bloggers I tag here are NamrataManiparna, KokilaRohit  and Nishi. I wish them best of luck 🙂
I also thank Sagarika for the tag 🙂 and My Yatra Diary for this opportunity.
*All the photos used here were taken on my former phone – Samsung Star Duos.

TeNy