Take heart. Outlook bravely predicts that India will win the ’99 World Cup. Yes, we know it’s a bit like saying Mr Govindbhai Ahuja of Virar (W) will walk away with an Academy Award for Aunty No. 1. But what guts/genius does it take to predict that Robert de Niro stands a better chance? In other words, buck the trend and take a risk in the name of the mother republic.
Remember, if everybody is so sure that "It’s South Africa or Australia" they wouldn’t have had to stage a 42-day tournament with 12 nations in the running. Remember, cricket’s a funny sport; a game of "glorious uncertainties" where anything can happen—and usually does. Remember Sir Richard Hadlee who said that Sri Lanka would win the ’96 World Cup?
Remember Nineteen Eighty-Three?
And listen to this. In spite of all the warts and weaknesses of Mohammed Azharuddin and his men, in spite of being in the "Group of Death" alongside South Africa, England, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Kenya, and in spite of losing just about everything everywhere except the toss lately (just 50 wins in 119 one-day games since the ’96 World Cup), there’s still a buzz about them...
So, where does the confidence that we will turn the tables stem from? Herewith please find 11 reasons. If we do it, spread the word. If we don’t, see the CricInfo poll.