Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Karachi and Cricket

Funny different places different strokes. (No pun intended!)

Cricket. I'm not a great lover of Cricket I like it but can happily take it or leave it if you know what I mean. But to use yet again the old phase 'when in Rome do as the Romans do' or rather when in Pakistan talk, eat, drink (soft only!) and sleep Cricket. Especially with the World cup in starting in less than 14 days. Might as well get in the mood and enjoy.

It's amazing how big a part of life in Karachi that cricket seems to be. Most of the world will see kids with footballs on every corner or in parks and any other open area where they can just kick the ball around. Here in Karachi that is not the case. In almost every corner, back streets and beach areas there are kids with a bat an ball and a set of stumps. All potential world champs! Well maybe a rags to riches story for them to dream about and for some that surely will come later.

Very noticeable to me over the last two weeks has been the content of the daily papers, particularly the sports sections. Pick one paper, say 'The Dawn' and turn to the back page. Like everywhere else the back page is the sports page. There is no mention of football or rugby or even basketball. But Cricket, yes printed column after printed column about this bowler and that batsman, fitness and of course statistics and more statistics. Yes you've guessed it, all devoted to the game. The whole back page and the inner page devoid of anything else. OK slight exaggeration there was sometimes a minor mention of other sports such as golf, tennis and hockey on one of the inner pages. So I lied a bit, but you get my point.

It was more noticeable this morning as "The Dawn' has finally caught up with the FA Carling Cup. It got a mention on the inner back page in 3 short columns together with a photo. I can only begin to imaging the contrast with what would have appeared in UK papers like 'The Sun', News of the World.

Still it adds to the flavour and character of Karachi and gives me a chance to see things in a different light while living here. Perhaps when I look back on this, my Blog I will notice these types of observations and see the overall effects it may be having on my outlook. I'll look back and reflect at any changes "Well maybe that's what living in a Cricket mad society does to you". We'll see.

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