Running is the most vivid memory I have from my early childhood. Even then I could run very fast, faster than all the other children in my neighrbourhood. I ran for no rhyme or reason. I would run up hills, through meadows, down the streets, everywhere and at any given opportunity. I had such high levels of energy that I couldn’t keep still.

My brothers would watch me running up and down our mohalla, perplexed. Once, I was racing down the street, my face turned up towards the heavens, when Shahid bhaijaan, my eldest brother, grabbed me and inquired, clearly exasperated, ‘Hey, you son of a djinn, what’s wrong with you, why can’t you stay still?’ But I kept running. I ran under the hot midday sun, during the monsoon, and even in the cold winter rain. I have often tried to explain to my family and friends why I felt this need to run, that it was both self-expression and an experience of complete freedom. When I ran, I felt free.

Shoaib Akhtar in Controversially Yours. (via lovingcricket)

(via leatheronwillow)