Bowling a Maiden Over…!

23

IF YOU’VE been thinking that cricket is only discussed and talked about by men on the field or commuters traveling in Mumbai locals or Delhi to Agra buses, you’re in for a surprise as my friend a bachelor, whose mother’s been relentlessly trying to get married found out last night: Kumar returned home and found his mother looking at him.

“You’ve been bowling too many maiden overs!” she said thoughtfully. It’s about time you brought a maiden over!”

“How mother?” asked Kumar perplexed by her cricket knowledge.
“It’s time you took a wicket!” replied the wise woman.
“What ball should I bowl?” he asked.

“Maybe a bouncer, a doosra, try spin but one that will get her wicket!” said his mother a twinkle in her eye.

“What if she bats, cross bat?” asked Kumar.
“Then bowl a dead ball!”

“But a dead ball may not bowl her over!” cried Kumar triumphantly.
“A dead ball will help bowl a maiden over!” replied his mother with deadpan face and Kumar winced behind such cricketing logic but decided to bat chest on, “A maiden over ma will not help me bowl a maiden over!”
“With all the maiden overs you’ve bin’ bowling son,” laughed his mother, “There’ll be no maidens left for you to bowl over!”

Kumar was sure he could hear a cricket commentator chuckling to hear such from a seventy year old.

He entered the dining room and as usual sat at the table, waiting for his meal to be served, but found no sign of his mother or sister, “We’ve decided to stop batting for you!” said his sister appearing at the door. “We’re watching cricket!”
“So who’s going to cook for me?” asked Kumar. “The night watchman!”
“A locum cook, a replacement?”

“A rookie batsman!”
“Who?”
“You!” said his mother, “You may occupy the crease! And when you bowl, pitch well!”
“Pitch well?” asked Kumar faintly.

“Into the frying pan and not all over the kitchen! Don’t damage the crease!”
Kumar heard the sound of the TV in the next room and very furtively crept to see what was happening, “Howzat!” shouted his sister, turning round.
“Out!” shouted the mother also spying him.
“I declare!” shouted a desperate Kumar.

“Follow on!” cried his sister pointing to the kitchen.
“You can’t do this to me!” shouted a hysterically furious Kumar, “This is my house, my TV!”
“He’s sledging!” complained his mother to the third umpire as she led him back to the kitchen, “You want meals to be served, food to be cooked or company for dinner? You’ll have to bring your own maiden over..!”

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