Tears Of Joy Turns The Pitch Moist As Papua New Guinea Finally Makes Its Dream Debut
“Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”
Andy Dufresne, The Shawshank Redemption
After years of toiling, it was a cloud nine moment for the Papua New Guinea cricket team as they took on the co-hosts Oman in the ICC World T20 opener on Sunday at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground, Muscat. They were so close yet so far on numerous occasions and ultimately managed to make the cut among the elites this time. Their dream journey to the world cup wasn’t a cakewalk by any means. In fact, things went down the wire! In a crucial qualifying encounter, they were leaning dangerously at 19/6 against the veterans Kenya and from there, the Davids sprung up a surprise by making a herculean comeback to pull-off a fairytale win over the Goliaths. The other day, when the Papua New Guinea players and support staffs stood up for the national anthem, they were certainly feeling butterflies in their stomach. They were indeed cherishing their moment of life, stuff that dreams are made of, with all eyes from the globe on them. When the cameras focused on this bunch of dreamers, it was a spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings, which came to them as organically as poetry. Bit by bit, the grasses of Al Amerat Cricket Ground soaked with emotions, as the PNG team couldn’t stop shedding tears of joy with their years of dream finally coming into a reality. The newcomers fought well but skipper Assad Vala’s heroics in the form of a fiery fifty went in vain as the more familiar, Oman went on to pick up a 10 wicket win over PNG. In the end, it didn’t matter much, as yesterday’s match, which marked PNG’s return to the international circuit after two long years, was much beyond winning and losing. Cricket PNG, guided by the able leadership of their CEO Greg Campbell, deserves a big pat on their back for their continuous hard work over the years in making this island nation’s presence felt in the grand stage of world cricket. The entire Papua New Guinea cricket team must be hailed for reflecting a sunshine of hope for all who dream big, in such trying times.