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An Indian newspaper has titled its World Cup campaign, "This time for Tendulkar". We think there are some more deserving people and causes that the Indian team could win the World Cup for this year.
For the Indian government
The last couple of years have been hard on the people who rule this country. They have shuffled their feet and mumbled incoherently through telecom scandals, separate state/nation demands, and galloping inflation. So, please Team India, win the trophy so the government can carry on being useless without having to explain itself to a nation too busy rejoicing.
For Ravi Shastri
"The men in blue came to the party by defying the odds and won this game of glorious uncertainties by putting their best foot forward in the crunch time. This is what separates the men from the…" Oh shut it. Even the Verbanator will have something original to say if Tendulkar lifts the trophy at the Wankhede.
It's possible our servers may crash and burn if India win the World Cup, but nevertheless we'll be millionaires overnight. Even the menials at Page 2 will get to spread gold-flaked butter on their daily bread.
For the paper-recycling industry
Mark our words: everyone who watches this World Cup will blog about it. And when it's over, they'll turn it into a book. India's win will mean nearly a million manuscripts (each starting with the writer's childhood love for Sachin). Out of which let's pray that at least 990,909 will be rejected and be sent to paper heaven.
For window-pane manufacturers
Once the World Cup is won, cricket will replace XBox as the No. 1 sport. And since India has streets and gullies, instead of parks and village greens, there will be several windows to be broken and subsequently repaired. Similarly thriving businesses also for: grumpy senior citizens who refuse to return errant cricket balls.
For the 1983 World Cup squad
They can finally retire from having to recall the memorable performances and magic moments of their tournament every time a World Cup comes around.
Not the ones who know when no-balls will be bowled but the Jerry Maguire sort, who show you the money, the kwan, the big fat IPL contract, and teach you how to tweet without making a fool of yourself.
We also realised that there are also some people and things for whom India could lose the World Cup
Cricket will no longer be the flavour of the season if India exit early. Maybe then the industry will stop churning out godawful cricket-themed movies such as the recent one about a second-generation British-Indian whose father won't let him play cricket for England (only South African daddies are nice like that).
For hairstyles that only Shahid Afridi can pull off
Zaheer Khan's accident-with-a-mercury-filled-thermometer hairstyle isn't something you want catching on, is it? Or the Sreesanth afro, which the island of Tuvalu claims is part of its coral reef.
Who will be out of business if India win - unless the government refuses to give Tendulkar the Bharat Ratna, the country's highest civilian award, next year.
For Greg Chappell
Who can say, "What Guru Greg couldn't do, Guru Gary couldn't either."
Nishi Narayanan is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo
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