Indian cricket is a phenomenon for fans. They cannot stay without it. And here in India, we take our cricketers seriously. And especially when one is a role-model figure like Rahul Dravid, also known as ‘The Wall’ or ‘Mr. Dependable’, the nicknames are as sincere as the fans’ love for them.
Having said that, Dravid, a colossus in the game has only found his fame double in size, in his second wind, exemplified by his mentoring of youngsters.
As a batsman, he was sensational. As a mentor, coach, guide to Under-19 cricketers, Dravid has found a new mantle of respect on which only someone of his sincerity and disciple could’ve sat.
He’s determined in his guidance to the youngsters like Gill, Prithvi, Nagarkoti and others. He’s approachable and goes by the old rule of the book: play committed, hard-fought, and excellent cricket, with a focus to uphold the dignity of the game.
Yet, in being this classic throwback to an era where cricket was about victories or defeats, no so much about shenanigans, talk-shows, irrational rants and whatnot- Dravid’s charisma attracts as much as it inspires.
His fan-base may not boast of bewildering numbers like that of Sachin and Virat but his admirers are a simple, uncomplicated breed who’d never leave his side.
Among the many, there happens to be an earnest youngster Sumanth Shetty, based in Mangalore, no so far away from Dravid’s own Bangalore.
Sumanth Shetty, who looks up to Dravid and finds in the famous batsman’s conduct, a way of life found out time to make a special Rahul Dravid tribute video. It means a lot to him. It’s his passion project.
This Rahul Dravid tribute video speaks of a captivating narrative and is aimed at attracting the attention of everyone who’s found a hero in ‘The Wall’ and wishes for the batsman to find the just place under the sun that he so rightly deserves.
I caught up with Sumanth and found out more on the video and was delighted to see it. Here’s Sumanth Shetty in his own words, on Rahul Dravid tribute video.
Everyone turned off the TV when Sachin Tendulkar got out.
But we (Dravidians) did not turn off the TV. We still had hopes that Rahul Dravid can save that match.
There are so many people in India who are fans of Sachin Tendulkar, Virendra Sehwag, MS Dhoni etc for their batting or captaincy skills.
Perhaps there are only some people who love their idol as a human being more than as a cricketer. Rahul Dravid fans make a perfect fit into this group.
There are so many people in India who loved cricket first and after that they love Ms Dhoni, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli etc.
Perhaps there are only a few people who watch cricket solely for their favourite player. Majority of the Rahul Dravid fans falls under this category.
When he was happy, we celebrated. When he cried, we cried. When he lost his cool, we became uncontrollable. When someone sledged him, we were angry.
There is only one match where we cried, even though he was laughing. For the first time, he got out for a golden duck in his entire cricket career, that too after his retirement, in a match of Marylebone Cricket Club vs Rest of the World XI.
We hated the one who got his wicket, who sledged him, because of whom his innings got unnoticed and also people who commented negatively about him.
Sometimes we are crazy to think openers should get out soon so that we can see Rahul Dravid on TV.
Sometimes we are crazy to think Sachin Tendulkar should not have been born in Dravid’s era so that Dravid could enjoy the supreme status.
Sometimes we were crazy enough to think Ms Dhoni was the reason for senior players exiting from a team including Dravid, even though it is not completely true.
I have always wondered why would I think about Dravid even more than my family at times. I have wondered at times why will I get angry when someone talks negatively about Rahul Dravid.
Maybe that is the amount of respect we have for him. And of course, he truly deserves that.
Being this kind of fan, I can only say, hasn’t been easy. It’s been really difficult to control the emotions at times.
Recently, one night I had a dream.
I was sitting in a First day-first show house full theatre.
And there comes a hero of a movie.
“Let us raise The Wall against tobacco”
Sorry…sorry, it’s just an advertisement.
And then movie name displays in the screen.
The entire people in theatre went mad screaming.
Suddenly, a 22-year-old boy with bat comes to Lord’s international stadium.
With the glorious 95 runs, he got edged And Started walking without waiting for the umpire to tell that he was out, while another debutant legend made 131 runs.
There starts the rise of THE WALL to protect Indian cricket.
There comes SILENT GUARDIAN of Indian cricket who is ready to do anything for the success of a team.
There comes the start of the career that lived in SHADOW OF OTHERS.
There comes a reason to call a cricket as the GENTLEMAN’S GAME.
And since Cricket is called the Gentleman’s game, Rahul Dravid is that gentleman.
Suddenly I woke up from my dream. I can feel Goosebumps!!!!
I was sad to know it was just a dream. I felt how good it would be if it becomes reality.
That’s the day I decided I should make some director to make a move for starting Rahul Dravid’s movie.
But I don’t want his movie should come just for the reason he deserved it.
It should become an inspiration to people who are afraid of failures, who are struggling in their life to face challenging situations.
It’s for the people who are unaware of his achievements, his attitude towards life and cricket and his greatness.
That movie should throw limelight on life’s important lessons one can learn by seeing Rahul Dravid which everyone must be known to lead a simple and happy life.
So I tried to give justification for all these things in the below short movie dedicated to Rahul Dravid which is done by me and my brother (video editing).
(kindly make time to see, share and like the video! Spread a word for Rahul Dravid)
Lead illustration by S. Rajnikanth!