Every now and then, sporting fans have the time of their lives…
I have grown up watching (and very, very occasionally, playing) football, cricket and tennis. I have lived and died with Stefan Edberg, Pete Sampras and Roger Federer (what a heartbreaker of a match that was yesterday, if you were a Federer fan). Unfounded rumours abound that tears may have been shed at the undersigned’s residence when Sir Alex Fergusson finally announced his retirement. And Sachin Tendulkar could make a bottomless pit appear in my tummy simply by turning up to bat in even the most inconsequential of one-day matches.
But as I was saying, every now and then, the sporting gods shower their fans with unhealthy overdoses of candyfloss love. And this July, and especially this upcoming weekend, is one such occasion.
Over in Russia, France and Croatia are the last two teams left standing, and will battle it out on Sunday to decide who will win the football world cup. In London, in the seemingly too good to be true environs of SW19, the Wimbledon champions will be decided over the weekend (Rafael Nadal and Serena Williams are my picks – what about you?). And finally, our flanneled fools will take on England’s, beginning today, in a one day series, to be followed by a five test series spread out over what was been a gratifyingly rain-free summer in England. It’s almost too good to be true.
While some of these sporting events occur with metronomic regularity, others follow a more irregular cycle.
Wimbledon will happen every year, no matter what (although they have been forced to shift out their schedule by a couple of weeks over the last few years). The ICC, on the other hand seems to draw up its so called Future Tours calendar by chugging the cheapest whiskey it can find, and then getting to work. And the football world cup, of course, comes around only once in every four years.
But that is exactly why a month like this ought to be savored, for it is sports gourmandism at its greediest. Everywhere you look, there are high quality teams and individuals slugging it out, yielding entertainment, tension, fear, anticipation and if you’re truly invested, possibly even catharsis.
We will, once this sporting bonanza dies down, return to the mundane reality of our daily lives and all the trials and tribulations within.
We will focus once again on the antics of that wise sage who currently leads America.
We will worry about Kashmir, Pakistan and China. We will all outrage once again on Twitter about matters gloriously inconsequential (okay, that seems to never stop, fair enough.) But once this confluence of the sporting stars wanes from our currently sunny skies, we will once again get back to matters more trifling and terrestrial.
But for the moment, pop open those cans, order those starters, and watch the best of the lot do what we should all be doing a whole lot more: play sports.
He doesn't expect the paradox to be resolved in his lifetime
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