Stories about passion

Are you afraid to be ordinary? Einstein wasn’t

My nephew Azlaan will turn one this year on May 3 and his entire life and career have already been sketched out for him by his parents, grandparents and even his aunt – me! Every day, while preparing his bath, his grandma smiles at his tiny little hands and passes her verdict: he will be a surgeon when he’s older. I disagree, he’ll be a writer. She frowns and tells me, “Of course not! Can’t you see, he has the fingers of a surgeon?” Nana jaan, on the other hand, wants him to be a finance guru like himself. And his parents ...

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You think cricket isn’t sexy?

My lack of exposure to “American” sports while growing up is never more apparent than when I’m at work. I’m surrounded by hardcore football, baseball, and basketball fans. Now, to be clear, I’m a sports fan.  I no longer call it “American football”, and have had my heart broken by the Bears offensive line time and time again.  I’ve cheered on the Bulls since I was a kid (D Rose for MVP!), but my sports of choice have always been soccer and cricket. So, while my colleagues are all about their brackets for March Madness, I’m streaming the cricket World Cup on my ...

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We don’t have cricket in America

My first day in Karachi coincided with the biggest cricket match that Pakistan has experienced in decades. Picture this: The Express Tribune web room awash with young, energetic staff wearing emerald jerseys over jeans and shalwar kameez, hurriedly filing stories so they can rush off to their government-sanctioned cricket holiday. They’ve all got one eye on the tiny TV mounted at the ceiling, not wanting to miss the toss when the bumbling, jet-lagged American, slips behind a desk and says in a deep-fried drawl: “Yey y’all, what’s this cricket thing about?” A marvelous way to endear myself to my brand new co-workers, isn’t ...

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What I witnessed in Bangladesh

I would like to use this platform to address some of the comments received on my opinion editorial about my experience in Dhaka at the cricket World Cup quarter-final that Pakistan played against West Indies. Firstly, I would like to admit that what I saw of Bangladesh was only a microcosm of the country – I spent less than three days and only went around Dhaka. If someone told me they went to Pakistan and only saw a bit of Islamabad, I would say, “Well you haven’t really seen the country now, have you? There is so much more the ...

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They return as heroes

It was a match that will live long in my memory. Pakistan slipped out of the World Cup after a nerve-wracking loss to archrivals India.They now return home as heroes nonetheless. The defeat is not under debate: we lost fair and square. However, the team that returns home is now a special one. They are special because they wore green and marched into the yard in Mohali, with their heads high, sending shock waves of intimidation to their opponents. Shahid Afridi’s leadership and the team’s performance in the 2011 World Cup was awe-inspiring. They continued to defy all odds, defeating the unlikeliest ...

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Aisam: Not just another tennis player

He did not just enter the hall-of-fame in the world’s sports history. He is not just a symbol of hope for a nation starved for a hero in a very long time. I also do not think that his biggest achievement is that he gave a country drenched in floods and smoldering in bomb blasts a reason to cheer and smile. For me, Aisam ul Haq Qureshi is bigger than Federer, Graf and all other celebrities that I have admired in the world of tennis, for a different reason. It’s his inspiring journey to success that a lot of ...

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