Last year, on the evening of this very day, I searched Google for Cricket Management games as I wanted to see if anything Other than Battrick, a game I'd played for more than 4 years then (I still do) and From The Pavilion, a game that failed to impress me, was available. And this is how i stumbled upon Hitwicket. Little did i know then that this game would occupy the place that it does in my life today and provide me with entertainment like never before!
The HW journey in league 453 of division 6 did not begin very well for me and I made a lot of mistakes, be it with training or with other aspects of the game. It was not until the 22nd of September 2013, the day on which the Mumbai Meetup was held, that I got to know how the training, fitness issues and other little things that make the game what it is, actually work. It was in this Meetup that I met Kashyap and many other successful managers Romil Shukla, Ronak Hellrokr who have been the head coaches of Maharashtra Maestros in the first and second editions respectively, Hindimoguls, Harish Gopal, Varun Sikka and a host of others. Not only was the Meetup an event of great fun but the guidance that it gave upcoming managers like me is also worth mentioning. Here itself,I was awarded my first Musketeership by Dev Ashish for being the first person to arrive at the venue. Hence, 22nd September 2013 is etched in my memory.
I started training my players according to the guideline received from the greats. But success wasn't easy to come by. There have been times when I have lost games that should have been easy wins. Losses in crunch games meant that the promotion from division 6 continued to elude me through seasons 7, 8, 9 and 10. There were times when i was disappointed and angry and thought of quitting but this game is so great that it has many other things to keep you interested. I followed the India Cup closely watching each and every game. In case I missed it some day, there was the excellent review written by Ronak Hellrokr to wait for. The IC Fantasy League was a superb way to get everyone involved as well.
Another day that I vividly remember is the 22nd of March 2014, another equinox day just like the one in September. This was the day of the Pune Meetup which was attended by many great such as Sir SC and Priyansh Modi. But it was the Deshpande father-son duo that made it memorable. Here, i received another Musketeership, SC being the donor this time. The Meetup tournament followed and although I ended up at the bottom, it was great to be involved in it.
Thereafter began season 11. I switched to league 816 and finally seemed to have found the winning mix. It was match after match of thrashing the oppositions! It was only the Bengal Dynamos (Now Durham Dynamos) who gave us a scare but we overcame that by beating them comprehensively in the home fixture. It was around this time that I toured North India with my parents and that gave me an opportunity to attend the Delhi Meetup arranged By Lord Alvi. This was another occasion on which I got to meet Kashyap. I made an announcement at the end of this one to award a Musketeership to the winner of the tournament following the Meetup. It gave me immense pleasure to award T. D. Vikas, the leader of the Hyderabad clan, with a Musky.
As of today, I'm in league 72 of division 5 and have built a good if not a great team. I hope to keep improving as the seasons go by.
In short, this game is not just a game on the web but an excellent community of like minded individuals who, on occasions even come face to face for an exchange of views. The Hitwicket groups on facebook aren't just about the game but they also depict the friendships as a result of Hitwicket. Today, I take this opportunity to thank all the Developers and each one involved with Hitwicket for the great job they are doing. I also thank all my facebook friends, all those not mentioned here and every manager, known or unknown with whom i have played during the course of this year!