BAH GAWDDDDD! ITS FINALLY HERE! I enjoy doing these, but this one was special. I present to you @Red Devil s interview. Cricistan: How would you describe yourself? Red Devil: Well let's see, I'm a born and raised Pindi boy. Sometimes smart and funny and sometimes dumb and lame. Introverted, friendly, goofy, considerate, thoughtful, expert procrastinator, professional cat admirer. That’s me in a nutshell. Cricistan: What are your interests and hobbies in life? Red Devil: Well, I play a lot of video games, love watching movies of all sorts (including the often-overlooked Romanian cinema) and TV shows and I also enjoy reading. Lately, though, I’ve been trying my hand at cooking! I honestly find the whole process of preparing food to be very soothing and therapeutic. Much of the credit for this new-found hobby of mine goes to our very own Munna bhai. Not a lot of people know this but Munna bhai is an excellent cook with an impressive set of skills. Either that or he’s been showing us random pictures from the internet. That picture with the labels did look very dodgy, @Munna bhai. Cricistan: Have you always been quite thick skinned? Red Devil: Honestly, I wouldn’t say I’m very thick skinned at all. It’s just that I can take a joke very well. I would describe myself as an upbeat and friendly person so naturally I enjoy a bit of good-humored banter, and I always appreciate a good joke even if it’s at my own expense haha. I think the secret is to not take yourself too seriously! Cricistan: Can you describe the city Rawalpindi to us? Red Devil: A place of indescribable charm and beauty where only the most noble and valiant warriors are said to reside. Legend has it that the most brave and heroic are specifically chosen to live in this lavish paradise. It is basically a beautiful, city-sized garden, filled with greenery and flowing lakes of pristine water. Cricistan: How did you get started on forums? Red Devil: The first forum that I became an active member of was PP. I remember back in 2009, I was searching the web about Umar Akmal — in my defence, this was back when he first burst onto the scene and we all thought he was going to be a special player. Anyway, there was a thread about him on PP and it showed up in my search results, and that’s pretty much how I got into forums. Cricistan: Why did you choose this username? Red Devil: I actually chose this username back in 2010 on PP, and I stuck with it when I signed up here on CS since most people here knew me from that place anyway. As for why I chose that, I’m not too sure myself. I was just a kid, I probably thought it sounded cool or something lol. Cricistan: Describe the city Rawalpindi to us but seriously this time. Red Devil: Lol alright, well, Rawalpindi is a very diverse place so there’s definitely more to it than just the bustling, overcrowded and noisey parts of it. This city is entrenched with history and you would quickly realise that just by walking around in the streets, which can be a surreal experience btw. The best part of Rawalpindi is probably the rural heartland because it’s cleaner and greener compared to the rest of the city, but the real essence of this place lies in its anachronistic British-era houses and the ancient-looking streets that don’t seem like they belong in the 21st century! Allow me to post a few pictures I’ve collected to give you a visual demonstration of what I’m describing. Spoiler Cricistan: What was your childhood like? Red Devil: My childhood was the best childhood anyone could ask for. I'm blessed with 3 awesome siblings and back then all we did was have fun and cause mayhem. We used to really test the patience of our parents to the absolute limit. I was a little wild as a child. There's this story that I've been told time and again about this one incident when I was a toddler: I woke up early one morning while everyone was asleep, went out and grabbed my dad's hammer from his toolbox, along with a few glasses and cups from the cabinet and then proceeded to smash them for no apparent reason. Thankfully the commotion woke my mom up and she stopped me before I could hurt myself but that is the kind of stuff my parents had to deal with lol. Cricistan: What's your earliest memories? Red Devil: My earliest memory that I can recall is of me in one of those baby walker thingys with my brothers pushing that thing around. I just remember I was laughing a lot. Cricistan: How would your different family members describe you? Red Devil: My brother who’s a very religious person thinks I’m too "liberal". My dad thinks I’m not responsible enough and my mom seems convinced that I'm the best thing since sliced bread. I personally tend to endorse my mother's view on this particular matter. Cricistan: Who are your most and least favorite posters on CS? Red Devil: Oof tough question since there’s a quite a few posters that I really like and enjoy interacting with. There’s @SwingNSeam and @Munna bhai, two people that I’m probably closest to. @maddgenius is another one, he and I go way back. @Choi Saab is up there despite the fact that he ditched us all and went missing for like half a decade. @Moe is barely active now but he’s still around so he definitely makes my list of favorite posters. @Patriot is also a fun guy. Guys like @Ahson8 and @saiyan0321 are proper gentlemen and some of the nicest people I know. Nothing but pyar and izzat for all these guys. Cricistan: If you were given a chance to have your face surgically changed to resemble a celebrity, which celebrity would you choose? Red Devil: I honestly wouldn’t want to look like any celebrity because then I would just be a cheap imitation. Ask @Moe, what did he ever get after surgically making himself look like Ted Mosby from How I Met Your Mother? Cricistan: If you were given a chance to meet any CS poster, who would you choose? Red Devil: If I had to meet someone from CS, it would have to be someone from the list of my favorite posters above. Cricistan: What makes you angry? Red Devil: I generally don’t let anything get under my skin so it’s not often that I get angry but there are a few things that really piss me off sometimes. The one thing that really gets on my nerves is just how intolerant and narrow-minded some of our people have become. I mean it blows my mind that we still have sectarian violence in this country in the year 2020. Just imagine how incredibly stupid it is to not only hate, but actually commit acts of violence against another person simply because your beliefs are different than theirs. Animal abuse is another thing that makes me really angry and just ruins my day. I saw this picture a few days ago of a horse that was made to carry so much weight that it made him bleed out of his nose. Stuff like that is so common here. It just breaks my heart. Know-it-all conspiracy theorists also make me want to slam my head against the wall. Whether it’s this global pandemic we're going through, the 5G technology, the polio vaccination drops or Bill Gates and his donations, it's all just a saazish of some kind. Cricistan: Do you have any regrets? What’s the one thing you wish you could have a do-over for? Red Devil: I can't really think of anything that I want to do-over tbh. I try to live in the present and not worry too much about the past. Every mistake I made and every bad situation I got myself into ultimately proved to be a lesson that helped me grow as a person. Cricistan: What qualities would you want in your life partner? Red Devil: I think for any relationship to work it’s very important that there be a connection and understanding on a deep emotional level, so I’d definitely want it to be someone who’s on a similar wavelength as myself as far as personality is concerned. If I had to pick any specific traits, though, then I’d say kindness, emotional maturity and a good sense of humor. Cricistan: What’s your favorite cricketing memory? Red Devil: It has to be the 2009 World Twenty20 final victory over Sri Lanka. I remember watching the final with a bunch of friends, absolutely immersed in the game and cheering every single run. I vividly remember that massive six by Shahid Afridi of Isuru Udana’s bowling, followed by David Lloyd's iconic reaction when he reflexively blurted out, “oh boom boom” at the top of his lungs. I still get goosebumps just thinking about it. That match, and that entire tournament, will always have a special place in my heart. Only other moment that comes close is CT17, Amir getting Kohli twice in two balls. Azhar’s dropped catch felt like a moment that could turn the match on its head. I remember that familiar feeling of disappointment and dread that most of us have grown accustomed to every time we see a dropped catch. Thankfully, though, Amir had different ideas. That entire sequence can only be described by this legendary meme: Cricistan: Overall, do you enjoy cricket now or did you enjoy the 90s/2000s Era? Red Devil: I started watching cricket back in 2003, during the World Cup, but I really genuinely became a fan during that India vs Pakistan series in 2004. I still remember Pakistan almost pulling off a sensational chase in Karachi, but unfortunately Moin Khan couldn’t manage to take us over the line. Pakistan could only score 344 and lost the game by just 5 runs. That was the match that made me fall in love with cricket. To answer your question, I’d have to say I enjoyed the pre-2010 era a lot more, mainly because our team was a lot more competitive and we had some of my all-time favorite players playing for Pakistan such as Afridi, Akhtar, Ajmal, Inzi, Asif and others. We have been on a steady decline as a team for well over a decade despite a few short periods in between where we had a bit of resurgence, but mostly the results haven't been too favourable. The overall win-loss ratio doesn't make for pleasant reading and that is obviously very demoralising as a fan. Add to that the plethora of controversies including spot-fixing, corrupt and totally inept administrations, lack of cricket at home — which meant more cricket in UAE’s empty stadiums — and no matches against our arch rivals. I mean, you get the point. It’s not a difficult decision to pick the pre-2010 era over the more recent one. Thankfully though, things are finally starting to look up, in some aspects at least. For starters, cricket is gradually coming back home and we’ve had a few major breakthroughs in that regard in recent years — the biggest of which was hosting the entire PSL at home. We also seem to have found qualified professionals to lead the PCB for what seems to be the very first time in my memory, which is quite mind-blowing if you think about it. A revamped domestic structure is another step in the right direction. All in all, I feel like the future of Pakistan cricket looks fairly bright, or at least we're moving in the right direction. I just hope this new crop of young players like Shaheen, Naseem, Babar and the rest can all live up to the hype around them and take us back to the glory days! Cricistan: Do the girls on Twitter whose tweets you reply to and retweet show interest in you? Red Devil: I practically have to fight them off bro. It gets very exhausting at times. That’s why I keep my good friend @Patriot around as an effective women repellent to keep things manageable. Cricistan: Who is your personal hero? Red Devil: That would be my mom. The amount of love, support, guidance and care she's given me throughout my life is simply incredible. She's the person I go to whenever I'm feeling low or distressed. She's the kindest, most empathetic person I know. There's so many qualities in her that I find very inspiring. Cricistan: Would you ever move out of Pakistan? Red Devil: Pakistan is far from perfect but it is home. I don’t know if I’d be able to live away from all my loved ones here. I simply can’t imagine life away from them. Cricistan: What languages can you speak? Red Devil: I can speak 4 different languages if you consider Punjabi and Pothwari two separate languages. The other 2 are English and Urdu obviously so that makes it 4 in total. Even @Mohan would be proud of that. Cricistan: What genre of films do you like? Red Devil: I love mysteries and good psychological thrillers. Movies like The Sixth Sense, Shutter Island and Se7en are some of my all-time favorites. Other than that, I enjoy comedies, crime dramas and westerns. Cricistan: Describe Munna bhai in 3 words? Red Devil: Munna bhai cannot be described with mere words. The legend of Munna bhai transcends the limitations of our inadequate earthly languages. And describing him in just 3 words is like trying to fit an entire ocean inside a lota. But if I had to do it then I'd probably go with kharoos, tharki, and junglee. Cricistan: What are the qualifications required to be a Pindi boy? Have your ever genuinely considered yourself as one? Red Devil: Well duh, I was born here so I'm a Pindi boy by birthright, even if I don't meet all the requirements. Speaking of requirements, there’s only a handful that you need to be truly considered a quintessential Pindi boy in the true sense of the term. They are as follows: You must have had a darmiyani mang wala hairstyle at some point in your life. You must not wear a helmet or any protective gear while riding a motorbike. You must know how to pull off a wheelie and then show off your skills in traffic. You must remove the silencer of your motorbike. You must flood your FB page with close-up selfies on a daily basis and then tag 100s of people in those posts. The words “Raja ji” or “Bao ji” are required to be a part of your vocabulary. You must own at least one fake item of any famous fashion brand. Your self-belief should be astronomically high, even if it's misplaced. And last but not the least, you should be proud of who you are and always stay true to yourself despite what others might think! Oh and I should add that being a Pindi boy is by no means restricted to only the inhabitants of Rawalpindi. Pindi boys are a global phenomenon. Anybody in any corner of the world can be a Pindi boy. I will use this picture to further illustrate my point. Cricistan: Your favorite desi dish? Red Devil: It’s a toss-up between biryani and nihari. Actually, briyani edges it, especially if it's home-cooked. I should mention that I've never been to Karachi so I've probably never even had the best nihari since Karachi is famously known for its nihari, so who knows my opinion might change when I finally get to try it. Cricistan: What about your favorite foreign dish? Red Devil: I guess I’d have to go with pizza. I like lasagna too. Ice cream is too mainstream but I absolutely love ice cream, especially anything chocolate-flavored. Cricistan: Have you ever had white feast ice cream? Red Devil: Ah, the mythical white feast. At this point, I think there’s more chances of me bumping into Bigfoot than finding this elusive, or perhaps imaginary, white chocolate-flavoured feast. Cricistan: What's one quirky fact about yourself? Red Devil: I don't know how quirky it is but some people find it very surprising that I have never smoked or done any kind of drugs whatsoever. Like not even a single puff of a cigarette. Cricistan: Who’s the most beautiful woman you have ever seen? Red Devil: Jennifer Connelly, especially in her prime. She’s still very beautiful but in her old movies (from around the late 1990s to early 2000s) she was just so incredibly gorgeous. Cricistan: Did you ever get into fights in real life? Red Devil: No, not really, I’m not very confrontational and I’m definitely not a hothead so I haven’t been in too many fights. The last time that I remember getting into a fight was in 5th grade. I don’t even remember what happened and why we were fighting. I just remember I went up to a guy and punched him in the face as hard as I could and then he returned the favor lmao. Neither of us got a clean shot after that. Cricistan: How did you get into cricket? Red Devil: I already talked about how I started watching cricket, interestingly enough, I actually started playing cricket even earlier than that, mainly because my older brothers used to play cricket all the time. It wouldn't be inaccurate to say that I started playing cricket as soon as I could hold a bat! Cricistan: What is your first cricketing memory? Red Devil: My first cricketing memory is Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Malik colliding with each other while trying to take a catch. I don’t know why this particular moment stuck with me but it did. I can’t really recall any other cricketing memories from that year. Cricistan: Do you play cricket? What attributes? Red Devil: Yeah but only backyard cricket or just in the neighborhood. I used to play a lot as a kid but not so much now. I was a slow left-arm bowler and a right hand batsman. I remember I used to try to emulate Rangana Herath as a kid because his action was very simple. Cricistan: Who's your favorite cricketer? Red Devil: Growing up, my favourite cricketers were Shahid Afridi and Shoaib Akhtar. Arguably two of the most charismatic and fun-to-watch cricketers we’ve ever had. With those two on the screen, it always felt like something big was about to go down. As far as the current players are concerned, Babar Azam and Shaheen Afridi are easily my favourites these days. Love watching them play. Probably the only two world class cricketers we have right now. Cricistan: Who is your all-time favorite non-Pakistani cricketer? Red Devil: That would be Sanath Jayasuriya. An absolute beast of a batsman. It's kind of sad how he rarely gets mentioned these days but man that guy could bat. AB de Villiers is another player that I’ve always loved to watch. He was probably the most naturally gifted batsman I’ve ever seen — so free-flowing and easy on the eye. Cricistan: Which is the most beautiful location you have visited and why? Red Devil: It’s kind of embarrassing how little I’ve traveled so far in my life to be very honest but it’s definitely something that is on my bucket list. Hopefully I’ll get to see more of the world before it’s all said and done. However, if I had to answer this question and pick one place right now, then I’d have to go with Nathia Gali. A scenic mountain resort with breathtaking views, about three hours drive away from Islamabad. Cricistan: Tell me something about yourself that nobody would know Red Devil: I once saved somebody’s life. I will leave it at that because this sounds way cooler than it would if I told the entire story lol. Cricistan: What’s the worst thing you’ve ever been through? Red Devil: Seeing my chachu pass away after an excruciatingly long and painful battle with his illness. Just seeing him in constant anguish for what seemed like a never-ending stretch of time and not being able to help in any way was heart-wrenching. I miss him so much. I just hope and pray to Allah SWT that he's in a better place now, insha'Allah. Ameen. Cricistan: Who is your favorite hero from the Islamic history? Red Devil: The first person that springs to mind when you think about heroes and role models is definitely our beloved Prophet (PBUH). You can’t possibly have a better role model to follow and learn from. May Allah SWT help us all to emulate him and follow his sunnah! Ameen. In addition to that, Hazrat Khalid-bin-Waleed (RA) is one of my favourite sahaba. One of the greatest military commanders and war strategists to have ever lived! Cricistan: Are you a religious person? Red Devil: Honestly speaking, I'm not where I'd like to be but I'm getting there. I’ve made a conscious effort during this month of Ramadan to get closer to Allah SWT and become more spiritually attuned. Hopefully I can retain some of the good habits that I’ve picked up this past month. Cricistan: Would you vote for Imran Khan again, given the chance? Red Devil: Given the lack of options, I’d have to say yes. Imran has not lived up to all of our expectations but still I have more hopes from him than any of our other political leaders. What separates Imran Khan from every other ruler that I've seen in my lifetime is that it's abundantly clear that he is trying his best to bring about a positive change, even if the results don’t quite reflect that. The challenges he's had to face so far have been almost insurmountable. He inherited a debt-ridden country with an economy that was on life-support and his government was formed by and still hinges on shaky alliances. He's made a lot of mistakes too but I'm willing to stick with him because I still believe he can deliver. He just needs some breathing space and some good luck. Cricistan: You are one of those people online that are very easy to talk to and become friends with, why is that? Do you cast a spell on whoever interacts with you online? Red Devil: Haha that's very flattering tbh. I just try to be friendly and respectful to everyone that I interact with. Cricistan: What's one quality people admire in you? Red Devil: I think the one thing that people generally like about me is that I'm very trustworthy. I've noticed how people tend to open up to me quite often and quite easily, and that I think is a clear indication that they consider me as someone who can be trusted and someone they can confide in. Cricistan: What do you like most about yourself? Red Devil: Um, I'd say I like how laid back and chilled out I am. I rarely ever get flustered or lose my composure and you will never see me being an uptight jerk even when I’m sad or just generally in a bad mood. Cricistan: What is your most memorable moment from the PPCL days? Red Devil: Oh man, I can recall so many great moments from those days. Activity levels were insane and we had some of the most epic online feuds and banter you can imagine. I made a lot of really cool friends back then and most of those friendships are still intact mA! When I think of memorable moments, the first thing that pops into my head is, very unsurprisingly, Moe's infamous mental breakdown moment. Or that time when we found Shaz's fake account on Twitter. That was absolutely hysterical! Thinking back, it's kind of funny how I was supposed to be a moderator back then but all I did was hang out with you PPCL guys and spam those threads lmao. Cricistan: What was your first impression of Patriot? Red Devil: Man to be very honest my first impression of him wasn't a very good one because back then, he was so weird and obnoxious lmao. But I have to admit, now that we've all gotten to know him better, coupled with the fact that he's matured quite a lot over the years, I think it’s safe to say that he's still just as annoying and weird. Cricistan: Who do you think is the biggest narcissist on CS? Red Devil: Lol @Prince Pathan was the first person that came to my mind. If you ask him, he’d probably give you the same answer. He is a good guy though so I definitely don't say this in a disrespectful way. Cricistan: What made you join CS and why did you decide to stay? Red Devil: I joined CS thanks to @SwingNSeam, who introduced me to this website after we became friends on Twitter, back in 2013! Though I wasn’t really active on CS until the infamous PP exodus when Munna bhai brought the entire PPCL here. Cricistan: What charitable cause are you most attracted to helping? Red Devil: I would say donating qurbani ki khalain to Altaf bhai's Khidmat-e-Khalq Foundation but unfortunately that charitable organization is no longer active. A great loss for all of humanity. Cricistan: Have you ever been friend zoned by a person of opposite sex? Red Devil: This term is so foreign to me, I had to look it up just to find out what it means. It’s true. I still can’t really wrap my head around this whole concept. Cricistan: What question do you always want people to ask you about yourself? Red Devil: I really like when people ask me for suggestions, advice, that sort of thing. I think I have an impeccable track record when it comes to giving good advice. Honestly, I feel sorry for people who've never had the privilege of benefitting from my words of wisdom. Cricistan: How would you react if someone takes away your favorite pillow at night to sleep on? Red Devil: Sounds like a disastrous situation. I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemy. Cricistan: Who would you want to wrestle on this platform the most? Red Devil: @Choi Saab for sure, just for the epic pothwari promos and trash talk before the match. Cricistan: Who have you met in person from online forums? Red Devil: I have actually never met anyone from the internet. Cricistan: What's one trait that you would like to have? Red Devil: I wish I was better at letting things go. I get attached too easily and when it comes time to let go, I find it very difficult to simply let go. I could also use a bit more discipline in my life. Cricistan: What type of hairstyle do you put up? Do you try lots of different things or stick to one style? Red Devil: I've tried my fair share of different hairstyles but my hair is very hard to manage. My hair is kinda thick and curly. I have a very simple buzz cut these days. Cricistan: What would you say has been the turning point in your life? Red Devil: It probably hasn't arrived yet because my life hasn't taken too many turns. Or at least nothing too drastic or significant that could be termed as a turning point. Cricistan: What do you make of Imran Khan? Red Devil: His heart is in the right place but he will have to do a lot more than just not be a dishonest crook. Unless he produces tangible results, he's going to find it very difficult to get re-elected. Cricistan: What are your political views in general? Red Devil: I'm a bit of a centrist. Pakistani politics is unlike anything in the world; our extremes are a bit too extreme lol. Cricistan: Is it better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer? Red Devil: Definitely, I believe it's better to err on the side of caution because only one of those two scenarios absolutely ensures an outcome where an innocent person is going to suffer. Setting a guilty person free does not necessarily guarantee that. To add to that, a criminal can only harm a certain number of people and he will eventually get caught. However, if the state starts convicting innocent people of crimes they did not commit, then the problem becomes much bigger because now injustice is being dished out by the state itself and not by a few individuals. Cricistan: Do you prefer working alone, or do you like working with others? Red Devil: I guess it depends entirely on what kind of work it is. If it’s something I’m sufficiently good at then I prefer to do it myself and at my own pace, but sometimes you need help and guidance so working as a team in such cases is definitely preferable. Cricistan: Would you rather have an empty apology or no apology? Red Devil: I think an insincere apology is definitely worse. If you don't feel sorry for what you did, then why pretend you do? Cricistan: When was the last time you did something for the first time? Red Devil: Lol probably right now, doing this interview on the internet! That's definitely a first. Cricistan: Which reveals more about a person's personality.... the questions they ask or the answers they give? Red Devil: I think answers because when you're answering a question, you have to be more detailed and thorough and that naturally gives you more insight into a person's personality. Although I think the questions people ask can reveal a lot about them too. Cricistan: If you were of opposite gender, which cricketer you would have wanted to go out on a date with? Red Devil: Definitely Rana Naved Ul Hasan. His long flowing mane of jet black hair is enough to make any woman weak in the knees. Cricistan: Who’s your favorite wrestler? Red Devil: Shawn Michaels. I was obsessed with HBK as a kid. There will never be another one like him. I still haven’t seen an in-ring performer quite like him. Cricistan: Your favorite wrestling moment? Red Devil: Just because of the sheer absurdity of it, I’ll go with The Undertaker throwing Mankind off the top of the cell. A truly jaw-dropping moment which genuinely made people think that something went wrong and they were witnessing something completely unscripted. Cricistan: Which female wrestler did you have a crush on? Red Devil: Trish Stratus. She was actually my first ever crush. Cricistan: You are very talented with graphing designing, is that what interests you? Red Devil: It’s nothing more than a hobby to be honest. I think it would be pretty boring as a full-time job. Cricistan: What's the most beautiful thing you have ever seen? Red Devil: This kitten. I mean just look at it. MASHA'ALLAH ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- And that's all she wrote folks. I consider @Red Devil a brother and it was a thoroughly enjoyable read. Thanks for your time RD. Enjoy yall!