Gwalior:Shoaib Akhtar got a hat-trick for his commitment to being a good boy.
After visits to the missionaries of charity home in Chandigarh and to an orphanage in Lucknow, it was shoaib who insisted that he wanted to spend Children's day in a special way in Gwalior ahead of the 4th one dayer.
Jyotiradiya Scindia, the President of the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association promptly organised a visit to the Scindia school.
Jyotiraditya Scindia had invited the Pakistan and Indian teams for an informal dinner and during the course of the evening he overheard Shoaib Akhtar saying he wanted to spend some time with children on Children's day, so bang came an invitation to visit the 100-year-old school, one of the top 5 schools in the country.
They say there's a child in every man. That's why when Jyotiraditya Scindia invited a few Indian and Pakistani cricketers for a day out with the students of Scindia school, no one said no. It fitted into to Shoaib Akhtar's mission "clean-up image" just perfectly.
"I remember that it's Nehru saab's birthday today, that's why its celebrated as Children's Day. I remember that and thats why I'm here, Scindhia saab invited us, This used to be a war zone and it's such a great institution today, what more could you ask for?"
But the Rawalpindi Express' sweet talk didn't seem to fool the students. In fact they seemed to have more sense on when to say what!
"I wanted to ask Shoaib why did he beat up his teammate in the dressing room but there was shortage of time. But then I thought maybe I shouldn't ask because it would give a bad name to the school," said a student.
The kids did enjoy watching the bad boy of cricket being bowled at by rival pacer RP Singh during a nets session.
But one man who's a bit irritated by all this camaraderie is former player and commentator Rameez Raja.
"I'm disappointed with the amount of intensity in this series. That's why you need someone like Sreesanth, he should play the Test series, even though he's a little over the top at times," said Raja.
Maybe the warning that Robin Uthappa got from Shoaib Akhtar about not playing his walking sixes might make Rameez Raja a little happier.
"I picked it up in England and it kinda came out of frustration when I didn't get enough matches to play. It's done good for me. But Mr Akhtar has warned me if I play the walking six, he'll bowl a beamer at me," said Uthappa.
It's a fact that cricketers in the subcontinent are superstars and for the children at Gwaliors' Scindhia school, this will be one Children's day that they'll remember for a very long time.