Cricket @ PICT
I am Tarun Notani, a student of one of the most prestigious institutes in Maharashtra — PICT. PICT a college known for its excellence in information technology and research, for its studious culture and also for its strict attendance policy. On the other hand I am a chilled out guy, who entered this college just to have fun and play sports endlessly. However, one requires a playground in order to be able to play. Unfortunately, in the name of a “playground” we have a basketball court that serves as a multipurpose court where cricket, football, basketball and handball are all played simultaneously.
My first few months at PICT were an absolute disaster. After struggling for 2 years, preparing for the IIT-JEE, I just wanted to enjoy my college life bunking lectures, playing cricket and football in the college team, organising events, etc., but as you may guess, I was more than disappointed.
I ended up attending each and every lecture in college. Adding to my existing misery, lectures began at 11am and ended at6pm, giving me no time to play. I was good at football, cricket and badminton, but the college did not have any facility nor impetus for any of the above mentioned sports.
As a result, after all the lectures of a day concluded, I used to wander inside college and go back to my hostel room, which was right outside the college campus. Sometimes, the day used to end early, thanks to a few friendly teachers, but my routine went unchanged.
One day while roaming around in college like I usually did, I saw some people playing football on the basketball court. I realized that they were my seniors. It felt good to see someone playing on that otherwise arid piece of land. It gave me a ray of hope that my boring routine could change in the tiny, unhappening campus. I asked them if I could join in and play with them for some time. It was good to play after such a long time. Within a few minutes, there were a few seniors on the basketball court, setting up stumps on one end, preparing to play cricket. It made me feel enthralled. Two of my most favourite sports were being played in the same place that I had earlier thought of being drab, dull, boring and barely exciting. I was excited to play cricket and football then, and it made me slightly positive about the chances of having fun in college. In this way, I discovered one more aspect of my college, that there are some people interested in playing and the one and only basketball court could be used as an arena to play literally any sport.
My classmates joined me on the basketball soon and we played for several hours together. As the days went by, we began to play with students from other divisions. This helped me make several new friends from not only my batch, but also among seniors. Vishal, Rupesh, Manav, Parth and Ankit Rao were some of the people who were equally enthusiastic to play. Day after day, we played more and more on the same, small basketball court.
In a few months, we started playing inter-divisional matches. On certain days, we played for more than 5 hours at a stretch. We even played a proper test match of 2 innings which lasted for 3 days. All this was because we loved to play cricket. No matter what the ground was — basketball court or an ICC-approved stadium, we just loved to play. This was the story of my first year, when I started playing cricket and football with my classmates, batchmates and seniors.
Image courtesy: VT