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India cricket’s elusive quest for a genuine fast bowler who can strike fear in the hearts of batsmen with sheer pace may soon bear fruit. Reports emanating from the Ghup Chup Valley, a remote outpost in Northern Ladakh, bordering China’s Xinjiang province, suggest that such a bowler indeed exists.
Not much is known about Gong Chuck Paa (or ‘genuine fast bowler’ in Ladakhi) save that he occasionally comes down from the Siachen Glacier, where he allegedly resides, to take part in local intra-valley cricket matches. Although his photographs don’t exist, local cricketers who claim to have played with him describe him as 6’4, of dark complexion, and with a buzz cut and powerful shoulders. And yes, he can bowl genuine, toe crushing yorkers and glares back hard at the batsmen after beating him for sheer pace, the local legend goes.
The news has triggered a flutter in Indian cricketing circles with cricketing greats and BCCI mandarins welcoming the news. “If this is true, this is just what the doctor ordered for Indian cricket,” cried Ravi Shastri. “Aila, this is even more momentous than India winning the World Cup. Happiest moment of my life, man,” exclaimed Sachin, struggling to hold back his tears of joy. India’s military medium bowling legend, Venkatesh Prasad, said he is keen to coach the lad and add new weapons to his armoury, such as the lethal slower ball after bowling 5 slow balls.
BCCI President N Srinivasan has duly dispatched an expedition to Ladakh to nab the fast bowling prodigy and bring him back to Chennai to attend a conditioning camp before he can be inducted into the national team in all 3 formats of the game. Needless to say, Gong Chuck Paa will also don CSK colours in IPL, after Srinivasan made a few phone calls.
Alas, reports of the mythical Indian fast bowler may have been no more than myth, fed by the febrile imagination of the local population. The expedition, after combing every nook and corner of the valley, bumped into the Yeti, another mythical creature said to inhabit these parts, but could not find any trace of the so called genuine Indian fast bowler. The search continues.