3. A CONSTELLATION OF INNUMERABLE CRICKETING STARS
Nostalgia reached a fever pitch as cricket witnessed a ‘one of its kind tournament’ in the All Stars League held earlier this year in November. An exhibition T20 series involving retired cricketers, the 3 match series took place in the USA (in New York, Houston and Los Angeles respectively). The league is the brainchild of cricketing legends Sachin Tendulkar and Shane Warne and is aimed at promoting the game in the USA. The two Captains picked their respective squads by means of a lottery on 5th November at the Times Square. The most fascinating aspect about the tournament is that it was played in baseball stadiums, on drop-in pitches that were prepared by a curator hailing from New Zealand. Fans were compelled to reminisce the golden days of Indian Cricket when they saw Sachin Tendulkar open the batting alongside Virender Sehwag for the Sachin’s Blasters. Warne’s Warriors also spiked ecstasies as they involved the likes of Jacques Kallis, Ricky Ponting and Kumar in the same line-up. Sourav Ganguly joined the gala event from the 2nd game. He hit a crisp fifty in the last game for the Sachin’s Blasters which went on a losing cause. The Shane Warne led Warriors whitewashed Sachin’s Blasters 3-0 and clinched the trophy in the inaugural edition. Kumar Sangakkara was adjudged the Man of the Tournament for scoring 153 runs in 3 matches at a spectacular average of 51 and a blistering strike rate of 192. The next edition will be played at 6 venues across the UK and the USA.