Ecstasy and Irony

The air was still with the sound of silence. Not a leaf moved, not a breath was heard. The Six thousand strong crowd waited….silently, patiently. All eyes were on him now. He knew it, he felt it. It was what he had always dreamed of. His moment of retribution, his moment of glory.

He remembered clearly as if yesterday. It was a year ago, on this very field. He was playing his first match for the school team. He was the defender then. The ball was coming towards him and the forward of the opposition team was charging at him. His mind had stopped working, and he was scared. It was a big stage and….he caught the ball in his hands. He didn’t know why. He didn’t know how it happened. But that gave the opposition team a penalty shoot which they took with both hands and converted it into a goal. 1 – 0, that was the margin with which they had lost. Immediately after that, the furious coach had had him replaced by someone else. He remembered, the way the crowd booed at him. Every one of his school mates……

.Throw him out of the team.

He doesn’t deserve to play

Hahahaha……here comes the chicken who caught the ball.


His coach had just looked at him once and then turned his face away. He had said nothing, but just shaken his head. That was worse for him than all the remarks which his school mates made. He felt like crying but didn’t. He didn’t know how to react. It was as if he had no emotions. He had just stood there…a blank look…staring at nothing. Feet too heavy to move. Arms too heavy to lift. And an invisible load that seemed to crush him. The crowd jeered but he could not understand a word. It seemed like a distant mutter.

And in one year, he had practised hard. Played hard. And now he was standing there again, in front of the same opponent, the same stadium and the same crowd. But this time, he was the captain of the team and the centre forward. It was the final match and they were losing 1 – 0. In the last game, he had stuck 3 goals to get his team into the finals. The same crowd had cheered for him.

This time he had a free kick, because of a hand foul the opposition player had committed. It was a long distance kick. Nearly from the centre half of the ground and from the right side. The angle and trajectory and speed had to be perfect. Only 5 minutes remained before the match would end. He had led the fight from the front this season and had taken upon himself to win the tournament. The demons of last year, were still there in his head. He felt he had to prove something. He had taken on himself to take this chance. It was a huge responsibility. If he failed, he would be a villain forever in the eyes of his school mates.

He took his angle, looked at it long and hard. The wall was being made. A four men wall. It stood in his way, the goal was behind the wall. He had to clear it.

In the stillness of the silence, a sharp whistle was heard. It was the referee announcing that the kick could be taken. The crowd was silent, the players were silent, the wind had stopped. He could hear his own heart beat. He could hear his lungs expanding and compressing. He didn’t charge suddenly. He took his time. He waited for a few seconds after the whistle. He had to be sure. Then he moved. It was not a run, but six steady steps towards the ball, before he swung his right leg to give it a hard kick.

The ball floated. Spinning deviously as it moved over the wall. The straight trajectory made it look as if the ball would be going towards the extreme left and would miss the goal by a good margin. But the spinning of the ball, made it curve. The ball curved its trajectory in mid air and like a smart bomb, went on to its target.

He watched. He could see it as if it was being played in slow motion. It was a perfect shot. He could feel the anticipation. He could hear every heart beat in the silence. The ball was going to go into the goal from the to right corner. The goal keeper dived. Stretching his whole body. That also seemed to be in slow motion. It was as if time had stopped.

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The goalkeepers index finger, just touched the ball. And it deflected a bit, hitting the top pole of the goal post. The goal was saved. There was a sound of dejection. He fell on his knees. That was his last chance. It was his final year in school and he had lost the final of the inter school tournament. He had given everything he had. But he had lost it in the end.

The whistle blew. The match was over. Hands were shaken. The winners were congratulated. His name was called. They had begun jeering again, he thought.

But no. They clapped. He was shocked. He didn’t expect that.

..Dude! That was some kick.

Awesome buddy. That was the best kick I have ever seen.

Can you teach me how to curve the ball….

That was some kick man. I was lucky I could get a finger on it. That was the goalkeeper who had stopped it. He was surprised. But you stopped it?

I don’t know how man. The ball curved so deviously. It just foxed me. I don’t know how I managed to touch it. I thin

k it was my lucky day.

His coach smiled at him. His team mates carried him on their shoulders. The crowd cheered his name…..

16 Responses to “Ecstasy and Irony”
  1. Pzes says:

    Oye Pattar Singh! 🙂 Nice!

    So easy for opinions to change.. People are like that.. they always hop to the winning side..

  2. Kartikay says:

    Dude. Awesome.

    Also, I really like the “twist” at the end! (Pun pun intended!)

  3. Purbaray says:

    That was a vivid narrative. Could feel the tension building up, his anxiety.

    Good job Prats!

  4. Deboshree says:

    Very beautifully written. I could see it all happening in front of my eyes, kudos to your narration.

  5. Rajlakshmi says:

    and thats call sportsmanship… to appreciate the talent and not who won or who lost
    wonderful narration. …

  6. cloudnine says:

    Very interesting post:) Loved the last few lines,though. That is how life treats us, we just don’t know when we might succeed and when we may fail.

  7. delhizen says:

    And I did not comment on this post till now? Bad-bad me….
    That’s actually one of the best stories written by you and I am going to like it too 😉

  8. Neeraj Kumar says:

    Your writing has life!

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