Recently I was privellaged to be able to attend the press confrence for the World Premier of “Fire in Babylon”.
Many Thanks to both Emerson Forde from Colourful Radio for making this happen.
The film (Documentary) describes the challenges of the West Indies Cricket Team and the challlenges in which they faced from being the laughing stock of world cricket to becoming the world’s greatest team known to man. I say this confidently because when the West Indies dominant era is remembered you have to count 15 years they went undefeated in Test Cricket. No other sports team in history has dominated their given sport for so long with such a long unbeaten record. Something people in the caribbean can be proud of.
Viv Richards was the inspiration behind me getting into cricket apart from my dad. He has been and always will be a role model for me. The reason why was because he stood up for what he believed was right. He was a strong man whom was intimidated by no-one and entered every match like a champion. A true lion. He would take the attack to the opposition and he did it as a batsman without a helmet- ever!!
Richards took on the best the universe could throw at him, the fastest and most deadliest of fast bowlers, the supreme swing bowlers and the dazzling spin bowlers. When King Viv strode to the crease, opposition captains would panic. He was that destructive a player. He would hit the ball with such a violent manner, the sound of the ball hitting the boundary boards would be sweet to my ears.
As I watched the movie, there were moments where I enjoyed watching the batsman getting hit by the vicious fast bowlers… what made the documentary even more entertaining was the former west indian cricketers being interviewed and giving their personal accounts of what was happening at that period of time.
“Fire in Babylon” for me fills in some major gaps in my knowledge of cricket and the political issues what were raised in the movie. Rather than getting bogged down in this blog about it, I am rather going to hope that you go and order the dvd when it comes out.There were moments in the movie which made me question my identity. For example I watched the West Indies travelling over to England to play the test series and found my heart being seriously troubled not so much about the game but the motivation behind the vistors, why they wanted to win so much.One moment remembering as a youngster I was an England supporter, then I watch the movie and my heart drifts to the West Indies. Being pulled this way and that. Again, you will have to watch the movie to understand just why.
It definately changed my perception of the gentlemen’s game. Cricket may have been advertised as a gentleman’s game but history shows that some of the combatants were far from that.
It was a great educational experience for me and re-affirmed just why I feel so deeply about cricket and more importantly the vision I have for the future.
I was fortunate to meet and speak to 2 of the legends Colin Croft and Michael Holding during the televised press conference which was live on Sky News. I also got a front row seat of what was a mind blowing experience. To see these legends litterally two or 3 steps away from you talking about their cricketing experiences is something that just cannot be described..
However this is something I can tell you.. it left me with Fire in my belly…!!!