Whilst watching highlights of an ODI game between Australia and Pakistan from 1990 I remembered an old sporting crush that I had since forgotten. Has there ever been a cricketer so dashing and so cool as the one and only Imran Khan?? If anyone can match him, do let me know, but in the meantime…let me wax lyrical.
I remember when I was a kid watching endless games of cricket and seeing this suave, majestic figure effortlessly make his way around the cricket pitch. Alas I was born too late to see Viv Richards at his pomp and prime, but watching Imran Khan was a sight to behold. His flowing hair as he steamed into bowl, the way he batted, even in ODI games, with his Pakistani baggy green, no matter the pace of the bowler, and the way he commanded his troops on the field, just magic.
Watching the highlights of the game the other day, it was just fantastic to see how much he really stood out. The other players really looked like they were playing a different, far more challenging game. They were all straining, sweating, and screaming, whereas Imran was just serene. The Aussies needed a mere 20 to win off the last few overs with big hitting Simon O’Donnell at the crease, but Imran brought himself on, and proceeded to destroy the stumps of batsmen after batsmen until Pakistan won the game. What a player!
What really drew my interest though was the way in which Imran celebrated his heroic match winning performance. After the histrionics shown by Shane Watson against the West Indian’s, it was so impressive to see the way in which Imran just coolly embraced his teammates. No crazy antics, no wild fist pumping, just an acknowledgement of the joy of being the best at your sport. Cricket is after all just a game, and it might be high time that some of today’s players took a moment to watch highlights of Imran, and remember that being the best player requires skill and also the ability to be humble. Imran we hail you!!
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