As the dust settled down after the epic WT20 final at the Eden Gardens where the Men from the Caribbean were crowned the champions in what turned out to be an enthralling encounter in a format which as the English captain, Morgan, stated, ‘You can never be sure of.’ ; people are still yet to get over this unbelievable victory.
It was the West-Indian all-rounder Carlos Braithwaite who launched the ball into the stands four consecutive times and the Windies laid their hands upon the much coveted cup for the second time. The celebration was wild as everyone from the West Indies camp went berserk and more than anything else it came out of emotions, which came to the fore definitely as result of the victory but more so for the path they had to travel for this win.
Leading into the WT20 there were other teams like India or Australia to say who were considered to be the firm favourites. However this tournament showed how time, hard work and an intense will power and intent can simply turn the tables and take the entire world by surprise. There came a point when after topping their group and performing exceptionally well, the Kiwis apparently seemed to have sealed the final birth but then came England who with ease denied them the final ticket and named it for themselves.
Then there were teams like Afghanistan who today has compelled the world to re think if they still are to be considered as an associate nation as they gave jitters to the big teams and above all defeated the current champions, West Indies. Then there were the Men in Blue who had to bow out from the tournament when they were just a step away from the title after keeping nerves of steel to come as far as they did.
When their own board expected nothing out of them and other men in the cricketing world made remarks like the much talked about one by Mark Nicholas calling them men with ‘no brains’ , the West Indians had a statement to make and there was no better way to do it by winning the world title. This was exactly why this victory meant much more to them than it would have to any other team. The statements made post the victory by Sammy made it all quite clear and evident.
Darren Sammy the only captain to have won this title twice (previously in 2012) when asked by Nasser Hossain on which victory was more special to him, he said, “We started our journey. We all know what we had. People were wondering whether we would play this tournament. We had a lot of issues and we felt disrespected by our board. Mark Nicholas described our team as a team of 'no brains.' All these things just before the tournament brought this team together. I want to really thank these 15 men.
“The ability to put all those adversity aside and to come out and play this type of cricket in front of such passionate fans... it's just tremendous... We dedicate this win to all the fans in the Caribbean... .we are yet to hear from our own cricket board and that is very disappointing. For today, I am going to celebrate with these 15 men and this coaching staff. I don't know when I am going to be playing with these guys again, because we don't get selected for one-day cricket. We don't know when we are going to be playing T20s…” Marlon Samuels the man who held it up for the West Indies when England executed their plans perfectly and the West Indians seemed to be in quite a lot of trouble, too had something to add to and answer Shane Warne who criticized his batting.
From not having the jerseys ready to play in the tournament the West Indians have definitely come a long way. Losing to Afghanistan did not dwindle their spirit as they came out all guns blazing against the Indians and forced them out to continue on their journey of ‘adversity’. The final obstruction in the form of the Three Lions which was on their way almost overpowered them and their hopes seemed to crash. The U-19 West Indian team had done their job and so had the West Indies Women's team by defeating the Australian team in the WT20 Women’s final, and it was now the Men from the Caribbean who had a huge task up their sleeves.
The English team executed their plans well from the beginning and put up a score of 155 that was quite defend-able. Getting the openers out on low scores that too Joe Root doing it and having as many as 19 runs in the last over to defend, destiny seemed to be strongly supporting the West Indians and not the Three Lions. Braithwaite displayed his heroics and turned out to be the knight in shining armor for the Windies as Ben Stokes came near to crying as a dream of the title tore apart right in front of him. To sum it up, it all squared down to emotions.
Emotions, which gave the strength to the West Indians to rise above all the difficulties and give it their all, emotions that brings out passion and it wont be incorrect to say that when talk of any sport it is the emotions, of the players, the fans and everyone associated with it that plays an instrumental role in shaping up the outcome and makes either playing it or watching it a worthwhile experience.