By Vincent Sunder
Rahul Dravid’s retirement was as simple and unfussy as his batting and conduct right through his international career. Face, they say, is the index of the mind, but Dravid’s face gave little away. Fighting from the trenches, he never gave the impression of the crisis he was battling. He was and continues to be a very private man. That is why nobody knows the real reason why he retired in media conference. The answers to that hitherto mysterious question were jotted down meticulously in his personal diary. It makes very interesting read:
- Surprising no one figured out why I really retired. Are people so dumb?
- Tweet from NCA Bowling Machine: Missing you dear!
- They are comparing me and Ricky Ponting, and saying he was more destructive. He broke a TV in the dressing room, while I just hurled a chair!
- Shopped on Commercial Street with wife. Jelabis and hot jamoons at Bhagtram, and a bank-balance-burning diamond necklace for her. She was so happy; she came home and wrote a beautiful article about me.
- Call from leading matrimonial portal for an ad assignment! Will be partnering with Vijeta in an ad campaign for the first time!
- People are still asking why I retired. Have they still not figured out why?!
- Karunanidhi called. Wants me to be brand ambassador for DMK (Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam) and is willing to drop the last alphabet from the party’s first of the three-word name!
-Several calls from Dr Vijay Mallya seeking an investment in Kingfisher. Cannot upset Shilpa and Raj Kundra. Need to take some tips from Virat Kohli and practice, before I respond to Mallya.
-Masala dosa breakfast Vidyarthi Bhavan with Robin Uthappa. He didn’t eat as his favorite item is not on the menu there.
-Lunch at MTR! Was yelled at thrice to sit down and wait for my turn at the table.
-Many more still asking why I retired. Do they not know the history of cricket?
- Set out to take kids to Cubbon Park, but force of habit had me driving into KSCA! Vijeta screamed her head off!
- Courier just came. A note with just a wink, and a box of candy. From Steve @#$*%&# Bucknor!
- Another letter by postal service. From Shahid Afridi, but it is in Urdu. Wonder what he has written!
- Summer, sweating profusely, bathing every other hour. Dad complaining that this month’s water bill will shoot up!
- Am really getting irritated with this ‘why you retired’ question. Think people, think!!
- Got a ‘leaked email’. Greg has written to Dada. “Congrats on winning a domestic tournament for the first time in your life! All the best, mate! PS: Rahul won the Ranji Trophy way back in ’97-98!”
- Negotiating vehicles and driving in Bangalore traffic! Negotiating Test attacks was far simpler. This life is tough man!
- Dropped kids at wrong school! Equivalent of dropping a slip catch?! I wonder!
- Had to say NO again to Raveena Tandon. She hosts some program on a Hindi TV channel.
- I may need to see a therapist if people continue to ask me why I retired. Lest I forget myself, let me read the letter that came with the pay slip on March 7, 2012 from India Cements.
I fondly remember the time you came from Bangalore seeking opportunities to play league cricket in Chennai in the late 80s. Your progress has been heartwarming and we are proud of your contribution to India Cements over the years.
My astrologer and vaastu consultant have predicted bad times. The parigaram (corrective action or remedy) for this situation is for someone associated with India Cements and Indian cricket, and has served either as Chairman or Secretary or India captain, to retire forthwith.
As you are aware, I have a lot more to offer to the game. But you are well versed in doing others’ roles. When no one was willing to open, you opened the batting. When no one else would keep, you kept wickets. You have never said NO. So, I make this humble request and hope you are not bowled over by this. Please announce your retirement. Coming down in person to provide moral support on this wonderful occasion for you!
- To ease up my mind, played cricket at home with Samit – was clean BOWLED middle stump first ball! Does he want to be another Dravid or Kumble? I am worried – but not about what he will become.
(Vincent Sunder aspired to play Test cricket, but had to struggle to play .gully. cricket! He managed a league side to title triumph in the KSCA tournaments. He was debarred from umpiring in the gully games after he once appealed vociferously for a caught-behind decision when officiating as an umpire! After two decades in the corporate sector, he became an entrepreneur with the objective of being able to see cricket matches on working days as well. Vincent gets his .high. from cricket books and cricket videos and discussing cricket)