Wednesday, 24 May 2017

First Time Is The Charm...Maybe

Yes, I did it. Yesterday, I watched my first cricket game and I liked it, regardless of the fact that Canada beat the Cranes. It had been a long time coming; the watching of the game I mean. It was one of those long overdue agreements I had had with Naomi about tapping into each other’s sports worlds, for the love of sports obviously. Just like the rugby believe about their game, cricketers believe theirs is the gentleman’s game. Ha! Debate for another day.

She made sure I was aware of the ICC Division 3 games and I made it to my first game yesterday. I hate to be late. I was told the game would start at 1000HRS and I was at Lugogo Cricket Oval by 0920HRS. There is a problem with making plans in this world, more so Uganda, whose climatic conditions are as confusing as Sean Spicer briefing the press. The skies gave way and the oval was wet. Unplayable so to say.

From the noise around the oval, you could tell the crowd was waiting to see a few of the local lads bring the game to the Canadians and inadvertently, some of the names stuck in my encephalon. Arthur Kyobe and Kayondo stood out. I mean Kayondo had his entire lineage wear his number on the back of their jerseys and come support him.  Next: attach a face to the names was the mission. There is always that smarty-pants; a Mr Know-It-All that loves to pry on my kind, the lukewarm. One of such a kind sat right next to me. I was taken up by the Twitter and WhatsApp apps on my phone trying to keep the world in loop of my new found hobby but he didn’t want to know. He often threw in his “I was with Arthur and he said…,” “I saw Waiswa train and I told him…” I could not take any more of this and I had to change pews. I saw a few faces I could recognize in the stands and I was comfortable once again. Just that we had to obey the skies and their poor timing. Not before long, it was as clear as day again and the game was to start at 1200HRS.

Thanks to 2010 FIFA World cup, the Vuvuzela has never been more famous. There were a number yesterday. The noise was Hallelujah-chorusy! If that’s a thing. Uganda elected to field first and were off in no time.  There is this man from the land of the Chapatti’ the land of people whom John speke beat to discovering the Nile, Busoga. He is called Waiswa. He is a gem. Oh my damn! He threw only invisible balls. I’d see him get ready to do his thing and next would be the sound of the ball meeting the bat. How on earth were Canadian batsmen able to see those balls he was throwing at them. And then there was that wicket he struck and eliminated a Canadian batsman. The entire oval went into a frenzy. The party didn’t last long. The Canadians bestowed upon us the curse of Rizwan Cheema. Boy did he silence the crowd!

If you think there is a continuation to this story, well, there is none. Rizwan was so good that it frustrated the enzymes out of me. Lunch called and I had to attend to that too. I left the oval with my head held high nonetheless. It was a very lovely experience.