Friday, May 7, 2010

That's not cricket.....


Grabbed a burger at a sports bar on my way from work back to the hotel last evening.  Though not a regular at sports bars in the world outside the UAE, BobOnARoll thought a little field research on the UAE sports fan would be a good idea.

The England-Pakistan cricket match was on---a big one for fans here.  Roughly half the expatriate population in Dubai is Subcontinent Asian, with the rest UK/Europe, and SE Asia/Philippines.  So, the bar was divided with the Pakistanis on one side and the English on the other.  And never the twain did meet.....

Did not stay long, but no nationalistic fist-fighting appeared imminent, such as you might expect from the English vs the Germans during a European soccer final.  Takes two to tangle, and since the Pakistanis are primarily non-drinking Muslims, they kept their wits about them as the other side drank themselves into a giddy stupor.

For an American, cricket is nearly impenetrable.  Had friends or family been there with me, they would have laughed as I had one eye on the TV screen and the other on my Blackberry browser tuned to the Wikipedia cricket pages, trying to understand rules and strategy.  Need to sit through a live game to get a feel for the field, the movements of players on opposing sides as the batsmen and wicketkeeper one by one face off against the bowler, fielders chase the balls through the infields snd outfields, etc.  The game is just close enough to baseball to be deceiving.  I am still in the don't-have-a-foggiest phase of understanding it.

But I will.

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