Sam Curran's 28-minute Journey Through The Three Degrees Of Separation > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more

Cricket news - Sam Curran's 28-minute swing through the three degrees of separation

From their deafening silence to their deafening roars, Sam Curran felt the crowd in Mohali

IN THE space of 28 minutes, Sam Curran had witnessed the three degrees of separation that sum up the Indian cricket fan. When his team were on top, he'd seen the partisan home crowd throwing their weight and voice behind them. When it was the opposition on top, he'd seen some of them throw in the towel and leave. Towards the end, when his team's hopes looked dire, he had also seen some in the crowd turn on their own and even support the visitors in silent decibels. It's the "fans leaving" that Curran didn't really get though. And he would sound startled by that sight even while talking about it a few minutes after he'd brought his team back from the dead with a match-winning hat-trick. "I actually saw some of the fans leaving when Delhi needed 30 off 28 [sic]," he'd say.

This was the 20-year-old's first "home" game in the IPL. It's likely he's played in front of big crowds before at his county home ground at The Oval. But this would have been the youngster's first in front of one so equally raucous and fickle. From the moment R Ashwin got rid of Shikhar Dhawan to the one where Rishabh Pant smashed Mohammed Shami for a massive six, Curran had seen and heard it all.

Now, even those who'd stayed back sat in silence, their flags folded and their whistles in their pockets. With Pant and Chris Morris back in the pavilion, Kings XI Punjab now needed the wicket of Colin Ingram, batting on 37 off 27 balls. And it's Curran who had the ball in his hand. Three overs to go, and 23 runs to get for Delhi Capitals.

The first three went for singles. Nineteen off 15 needed. Ingram, who thrives on clearing his left-leg and opening himself up was ready for the big shot. So was Curran, as he threw up a full and wide delivery. Ingram had to stretch, and couldn't middle his strike as the ball sailed straight to the long-off fielder's hands. Punjab had their man, and the Mohali crowd had their voice back, briefly.

Curran though was only getting warmed up and he took a while to join his teammates for the celebratory huddle in the next over when Shami cleaned up Hanuma Vihari. He'd probably already started planning the final over. Here was the IPL's latest multi-million dollar baby all set for his big moment under the spotlight. Shami had eased the load on him though. Curran now had 15 to defend against Delhi's lower-order. And the English all-rounder gets the yorker right, knocking out Kagiso Rabada's leg-stump.

"I have never played in front of such noise. When I was bowling that last over, I couldn't even hear myself speak to Ravi (Ashwin) who was literally a metre away," Curran would reveal candidly at the end of the day. And now with the home team just a wicket away, the noise levels were only burgeoning around the IS Bindra Stadium. So much so that Curran would reveal to have not even realised that he was on a hat-trick, considering, as he would admit, "I couldn't even hear my own thoughts." Maybe it was for the best, as Curran executed yet another cerebral yorker to knock out Sandeep Lamichanne's stumps and seal the deal for his team. By then, Curran had also experienced that other unsung trait of the Indian cricket supporter-their penchant to adopt and accept overnight heroes. But even while he was being hailed as the new hero of Punjab, Curran hadn't forgotten the decision made by some to give up hope all too soon. And like he did on the match, he had the final say on the day's proceedings too quipping, "The fans that went home are going to be very disappointed. They missed a great Punjab win."

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