Cricket Uncut

A group blog run by professional cricket writers from across the world

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Who needs hydration?

As I entered the press box at the Ferozshah Kotla ground, at 6.30 am today morning, the bottle of water I was carrying was confisticated. "Water not allowed," the cop told me. He also said "mobile not allowed" and "camera not allowed", conditions that don't exist for the press at any other ground, but I smuggled them in anyway. A bottle of water, though, was too big for the secret pockets of my Samsonite laptop backpack. But I assumed we'd get water in the press box refreshment area.

Ha. There were massive containers of water there, but no glasses or bottles, because those had been held up by security. The Pepsi machine was working, but again, no glasses. After a couple of hours, I spotted an empty bottle lying somewhere, washed it throughly, filled it with Pepsi for my colleagues, and strode towards the part of the press box where we sit. I was stopped by security. "No Pepsi," they insisted. There was a commotion behind me. Bottles of water had just arrived. But those weren't allowed where we were sitting either. Eventually, Jaideep Bhandarkar of NDTV, a big man with a big heart, smuggled us some bottles, as the TV cameramen's enclosure was next to ours, and bottles were allowed there.

But what about the rest of the crowd? I don't know how many thousands of people have queued for hours for tickets and come here at an insanely early hour to watch the match. They now sit in the open air, and the sun beams down on them. They cheer lustily, but soon their throats will be dry.
amit varma, 8:47 AM| email this to a friend | permalink | homepage