Play Ball by Ball

                             By Ashutosh Karnatak             

In India cricket is like second religion, the feeling of the same has ingressed into our blood. The match of cricket endows us with almost all type of emotions ecstasy ,joy , pleasure ( in case team wins ) ,sorrow ,anger, desperation  (in case our team loses) etc etc . Visualize yourself seeing a match on television and type of feelings, which you experience.

 However, have you sometimes observed that what else cricket tells us and it is co-related with our life. While discussing some problem with one of our Director, he advised me to deal the case “Ball to Ball”. It has a hidden meaning i.e. that as per the situation actions would be taken. This concept gives rise to role of cricket in our life. There seems to be a definite analogy between cricket and life. Let us see how it is:

Cricket has following ingredients: 

1)               Your team

2)               Opponent

3)               Pitch

4)               Toss

5)               Batting team

6)               Fielding team

7)               Fielders

8)               Batsman

9)               Wicketkeeper

10)           Baller

11)           Boundary

12)           Umpire

13)           End of The match  


Let us see how the terminology is analogous to our activities:

1)   Your team: A team comprises of 11 players with one-12th man to serve drinks etc. All the team members have very important role in the team. This team is led by a person called” Captain” who have to manage with these team members , board members ,media etc . In the same way you are the captain of your team at home or office .Others members are your team members. You need to see their strength and weakness and accordingly you have to set their positioning in play of life. It is upto you to take advantage if their strength and be victorious.


2)   Opponent: The match is played between two teams. Both the teams intend to win. The opposite team also has strength, which other team has to assess. The weakness of opponent should be your strength so that you can record win over the opposition. Analogous to this, where the issue to be dealt with others, consider yourself as one of the team and resolve that you have propensity to win. With this thought go to the pitch.


3)     Pitch: It is the place where both the team tests their nerves and fortune. It is the place, which makes or breaks the team, their country and individual team players. Only these pitches have   given fame to Sunil Gavaskar, Brian Lara, Sachin Tendulkar, M S Dhoni etc. Therefore, Pitch is very important for a cricketer, as it is their testing place. In the same way our life is a pitch for us, we have to perform here, which after 60 years we can assess for our success and failure. The pitch of life witnesses many matches for a person during his lifetime. Different matches are as under :  

Match Number

CategoryType of MatchExpectation
1Under 19 Education

Excelling in education till class 12th

2Senior -1Professional education

Getting admission in profession colleges and securing good marks and possibility to do post graduation from a college of repute.

3Senior -2Profession

Acquiring good job with appropriate salary package

4Senior -3Married life and other Family issues

Maintaining  harmonious relationship with spouse and other family members

5Veteran -1(50-60)Profession and Children development

Getting top level position in profession and getting best professional education for children

6Veteran -2(60 and above )Social Responsibility

Comfortable retired life and giving back to the society

All these matches are to be played to win in the pitch of life. Whenever, there is a issue see the pitch before taking any action so that you can pan your strategy. Before start of the match, a chance is given to both the team by doing the toss that who will bat first.

4)        Toss :     It is very important in the game of cricket , as most of the time the team who wins the toss , wins the match as the toss winning captain has a chance to select batting or bowling . If there is dew in the pitch the toss wining captain selects bowling so that he can get advantage of dew while bowling first. In the same way in our life every time we get a chance of selection, but it all depends on our judgment. One needs to have acumen of understanding the environment which is like dew of the pitch . Action without understanding the environment is like wandering in the desert where you become directionless. After winning the toss one team goes for batting while other has to field. Now the real battle starts.


5)      Batting team: Generally, batting team has an order to follow in the batting. It is predecided that who will go for opening, first order, second order etc. The players at opening, first order and at the sixth order are very important positions, because if the opener gets out early the first order player can support the team and take further .The player batting at the sixth position has importance if the earlier player get out early, he gas to shoulder the responsibility of carrying the score further to a winning score. In the same way, every day we bat but here the position is somewhat different. We are required to bat ourselves at different positions and we have to get others bat with or without their knowledge,. Further, we are required to see the game of others as they are also batting to win their matches. In the modern professional life, people used to say,” why don’t you do the batting.” It means one needs to bat properly with the circumstances. One needs to find out the connection who can bat for him like a runner in cricket. One needs to select that for a particular case he has to open or first down and sixth down. For a particular issue, one needs to select his team who can bat for him and win the cause.

6)    Fielding team: Now suppose you are a fielding team, then the fielders are placed keeping two aspects into consideration: one keeping the batsman into consideration and other is with respect to bowlers’ perspective. Captain is success if he places fielders as per the requirement. He is required to assess the style of the bowler as well as the batsman. He needs to see style of batting. Sometimes batsman changes the style – sometime he plays ball of leg side to offside, then the captain needs to check him by placing a player in that direction only so that any mistake by the batsman may lead to a catch or at least runs can be reduced. In the same way in our life also we have to field most of the time, as circumstances put one in fielding mode only. Considering others as batsman, we need to put either our fielders in the form of self or associates.

7)      Fielders: Field placement is an art, which captain needs to understand. Suppose a batsman is placing boundary after boundary then the captain takes two actions: one placement of the fielders in the boundary and other change of the bowler. In the same way when we find the opponents are playing shot by shot, then we need to change the strategy by changing the fielders or proper placement of the proper fielding. We are also required to select the person who can be used for a particular condition. So put the person as per his strength. It should be well understood that very few in life who have all-rounder capability. Therefore, in your network, you should have mix of person like good catchers, good fielders, and one or two all-rounder.

8)    Batsman: He is the key of the team. Team of good batsman can ensure the win like Australian team comprising if Mathew Haden and Symonds. Their average would be more than 50. Therefore, a captain is sure that whenever they are in the field, score is bound to increase. In the same way, one must know how to bat in the life. The batsman has a eye on the total field placement by opposite team so that  he can plan his shots and he has an eye on baller and his style of balling and he plays “Ball to Ballbecause any predetermination may lead him to OUT . Thus, he manages his style of playing based on ball to ball. It needs his excellence on molding himself. Similarly, in life also one needs to adjust himself or react as per the circumstances. Although it is necessary to understand type of circumstances, which type of circumstances are going to happen but it is better to react ball to ball i.e. circumstances to circumstances. It keeps opponent also guessing about your reaction .otherwise the opposite baller will deliver the ball as per the anticipated reaction from you. Thus, we need not to make ourselves predictable and play in life “Ball by Ball “.

  9)      Wicketkeeper: The role of wicketkeeper in cricket is also very important. He is required to collect the ball, which is missed by the batsman, he catches the ball behind the stumps if it snicks, and he stumps the batman within a flick of second if he goes out of the crease. Apart from this he supports the baller in appealing in case of LBW. Similarly, in our life we need to act in many conditions, as soon as the opponent does make a mistake i.e. goes out of the crease he has to be stumped. Whenever he does a mistake i.e. snicks the ball, he needs to be caught. By understanding the role of wicketkeeper in life, we are able to understand the type of game opposition is playing. In our life many opposite batman come and go .Thus by assuming the role of the wicketkeeper we should be able to understand the type of game one plays and our reflexes has to be very sharp required to defeat the opponents .

10)   Baller : Like batsman , the baller have to have the sharpness to penetrate the bat of the batsman by different type of ball .One  side the batsman tries to understand the baller ,on the other side the baller tries to deliver the ball in such a way that it bets the batsman . Cricket is the battle between ball and bat. Thus baller employees different strategies  to make the batsman out by delivering different balls like pace ball , spin, Bouncer , Doosra , Yorker , Veemer ,Full toss etc . In the same way in our life, our ball delivery should be like that. We must know that how opponent is playing, what are his weak areas like if a batsman is weak on the leg side, the baller delivers ball on the leg side to make him out or if he is weak with spin, the captain puts a spinner to ball him. In the same way, one should regulate his/her strategies so that who so ever plays against, he should be able to face, either he surrenders or leaves the way for you. Thus, one should deliver Ball to ball so that nobody is able to understand your strategy. By virtue of experience, you should have different type of strategies with you as Pace, Bouncer, Spin, Yorker or Veemer and you should also have enough experience that which type of ball is to used when.

  11) Boundary: The batman is known for making runs that is why today Don Bradmen, Sunil Gavaskar, and Sachin Tendulkar have become legends of batting. The batsman tries to send the ball outside the boundary to score either four or six.  It is his style and understanding of the ball. The boundaries are like milestone what we achieve in life in different forms. They are inspiration to achieve another milestone. Some time we have seen that one bats man has score six sixes in the same over. In this case, each six inspired him to go for another six. Boundaries act as inspirations. So one must have list of milestone which he /she has achieved to score sixes after six in life. 

12)   Umpire: Without Umpire, the match cannot take place, as he is judge of the game. He sees the actions of the baller, He only tells the batsman is out . He only declares which type of run is. He only decides whether match to continue in poor light etc etc. He acts as third umpire, when both the umpires find difficult to take decision. so umpire has a very important place in the match . The most important part is his accuracy of decision as the fate of the team depends on his decision-making capability and impartial attitude. In the same way, one has to act as umpire in real life. Almost every day you are required to make judgment. The expectation of the environment is one should be fair and judicious. Thus, always try to be act impartial while making any judgment. 

13)    End of the Match: It is the point where most of the time one team wins and other losses. The winning team becomes jubilant whereas the losing team tries to introspect the reason for loss. The winning team is one who has used all his strategies to win like good batting , balling and fielding .At the start of the match both the teams intends to win and winner has . In the same, after any event, we must try to find out reason of success and causes of failure as both are required before other match starts. 

 Therefore, play “Ball by Ball” but have eye on the environment.

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