Finally it was the big game day
Right from the beginning I could feel the buzz in the air in this little baseball field surrounded by hills and farms. The locals were arriving in buses blowing their horns, shouting baseball, baseball. The Ugandan kids were loose and fooling around. The Canadian kids were calm and collected.
Before the the game began, I already knew there can’t be a loser in this game. Months of hard work by the organizers and volunteers have paid off. The game that should have happened in the Little League World Series is finally happening, except it’s now taking place on their home field of dreams. Everything looked almost too good to be true.
But it was true. The 2 teams played a fantastic game. Uganda scored early to take a 1-0 lead. As the Canadians shook of their rust, they came back to tie the game 1-1 at the top of 6th, the last inning. Bottom of 6ht, Abooki, the youngest and littlest player on the Uganda team, got on the base with a beautiful single. He had this huge smile on his face as he celebrated with a little dance. But just as he has always been so quick to smile, he stole the second base. Then the 3rd base. Augustus followed with a walk-off RBI single. Of course, the game just had to end with the littlest guy coming back home to score the winning run for Uganda. 2-1.
The players and the crowd rushed the field, propping Abooki up on their shoulders. The Canadians looked on, all with the biggest smiles on their faces. Me? I found myself taken over by the moment, with a bit of tears in my eyes.
*Update: Here is a great article by ESPN’s Steve Wulf on the game. Much more detailed: http://es.pn/xCn7GI
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