The Nine Waves - The Extraordinary Story of Indian Cricket
An engaging, in-depth history of our favourite game from its early days to the present...
Mihir Bose is a lucky man. It is as if he was destined to be a witness to a significant part of the evolution of Indian cricket. He watched, as a five-year-old, India playing a Test match in Mumbai in 1951. As a journalist, he covered some of India's most famous Test wins and infamous defeats, as well as its greatest moment - winning the World Cup in 1983.
If all that isn't enough, he was a schoolmate of Sunil Gavaskar at Mumbai's St. Xavier's and was told by his teacher that the Little Master would play for India. In his long career as a print journalist and broadcaster, he has also had the opportunities to interact with many of the legends of the game.
He is also a fine writer and insightful. So Bose has got more credentials than most people to write a history of Indian cricket. He wrote one in 1990, A History of Indian Cricket.
The game has travelled a lot since, as has India. So Bose has come up with another book chronicling India's favourite sport from its early days till the recent tour of Australia.
Past to the Kohli era
The Nine Waves: The Extraordinary Story of Indian Cricket is one of those rare books that will satisfy the academic as well as the enthusiast. Here Bose has tried to view the story of Indian cricket unfolding in nine waves, or periods, from the first one that started with the inaugural Test in 1932 to the ninth, which is the Virat Kohli era.
Bose narrates the fascinating story of Indian cricket not just from the narrow point of view of sport. He also views it from a social angle. That is one of the many reasons why the book reads so well.
Another reason is the liberal use of anecdotes, some of them from his own experiences as a cricket fan and journalist. You will be surprised to learn what former Indian captain-turned-coach Bishan Singh Bedi wanted to do with his umbrella after reading his interview by Bose in a publication in England.
Early on in the book, while talking about India's tradition of forming cricket teams - and regiments in the Indian Army - based on religion, the author mentions that the newspaper The Hindu was advertising religious ties when it was being set up. That isn't true. In the same chapter, Bose says Jammu and Kashmir did not produce a single cricketer who played for India. But, Parvez Rasool has represented India in a One Day International as well as a T20 International.
Such oversights are pardonable in a book that covers, at considerable depth, such a long span of time and has so many tales to tell. Bose does that in an engaging manner. The Nine Waves won't disappoint you.
Courtesy: THE HINDU