17 June, 2021

Her Faith In Him

A friendly enigma called Sumaiyah Amla

Indian Express
Her Faith In Him

In the washroom at the  Eden Gardens Stadium clubhouse, a woman stood in front of a full-length mirror, languidly taking off her black burqa, alas, only to adjust it. But I had ample time to observe: her hair was tied in a long, brown braid; she looked typically Mediterranean, her skin golden.

Realising I was watching her, she smiled and, in an accented English typical of South Africans, asked, “Do you live here?” I nodded and added, “Your husband is doing very well out there in the field.” With an expression oozing serenity typical of those who believe in fatalism, she responded, “God is doing it.”

The man out in the field was Hashim Amla, dourly batting to deny India victory on the last day of the second Test match. And the woman in the washroom? Amla’s wife, Sumaiyah, who over the five days of cricket at Eden had been sitting in the glass-encased clubhouse box, covered from head to toe in a black burqa, often exchanging comments with the other visiting wives and partners of South...

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