With the year closing down, I decided to write about the things which I was able to accomplish in this year which I wasn’t able to achieve in my lifetime. I have been an avid sports fan since my childhood, but the only sporting event where the one which were shown on the television and some local sporting event. I never had any privileges to watch the events live on the stadium, this year changed that. I was able to watch four events up close and personal. In this blog I am going to share about those experiences.
The only live event before this year was the 1st test match between India and West Indies which was played at Wankhede stadium in the year 1994, I was at the ground on the first and the last day of the test match which India won.
The first event was the hockey match between Mumbai Magician and Punjab Warriors, held on 20th Jan 2013, it was won by the later with score-line of 4-2 in favour of winning team. It was part of the inaugural edition of Hockey India League. Since the launch of Indian Premier League, lots of other sports in India have followed the same suit, which includes hockey, badminton, etc. There was decent crowd for the match, which had lots of Australia hockey players on both sides, the quality was club level, overall was fun to watch, the ticket was priced Rs 100. It was an evening match played under lights.
The second event was the final of Women Cricket World cup held at Braboune Stadium, Mumbai on 17th Feb 2013. It was contested between Australia and West Indies. It was a lopsided affair with Australia winning by 114 runs in the end. It was a day and night 50 overs match. The entry was free, but one had to go though a security check before entering the stadium. There was decent crowd with lots of school children.
The 3rd event was the most important from my personal point of view, it was the 20th Asian Athletics Championship, as a kid I had watched the 1989 games, so I grabbed this opportunity to watch it live this time. It was held in Shri Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Balewadi, Pune. It was held between 3-7 July 2013. I was able to attend the 2nd day of the championship. The sports complex athletics stadium has a capacity of 22,000 spectators. The highlight of the day was watching Indian discus thrower Vikas Gowda winning the gold, apart from that I was able to watch both 100m men and women finals in action. Also, there was final action in women’s high jump, mens 400m, mens 10000m, decathlon, etc. I was able to watch 7 finals live. The sports complex has a magnificent statue of Shivaji Maharaj. Adjoining the sports complex is the sports village. Watching the best athletes in Asia was a fulfilling experience. The entry to the event was free. Overall China dominated the events, India finished a creditable 6th with 2 gold, 6 silver and 9 bronze.
The final event which I was able to witness was 3rd Vasai Virar Mayor Marathon, which is a nationally recognized marathon. I had participated in the half marathon last year, this year I was on the sidelines clicking photographs.
Apart from the above mentioned sporting events, this year I was able to discover the wonderful language of Sanskrit, the only complete language in the world. Also, I came to know about various species of butterfly in our locality, which are around 150 species. I was able to watch more than 25 species this year. Also, I became a better cook this year. Climbed the tallest mountain in my state.
Well that’s all for the positives of the year-end blog.