It is the image of the late sun, setting reluctantly over Sharjah as if unhappy at having to miss out on the game's conclusion but still with the magnanimity to colour the sky beautiful, that is brightest.
Somewhere in the stands, two young women look at the cameras trained on them and just hope for the ground to swallow them up; on the field Waqar Younis is running in to Ian Bishop, one needed, or Chetan Sharma running in to Javed Mianded, four needed; this was Sharjah.
The fourth one-day international (ODI) between Pakistan and Sri Lanka last night was the 201st one-day international game held at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium and with the atmosphere here, if only it was the record-breaking 200th.
Alas, that was played last year in February, between Afghanistan and Canada. Rather fewer people turned up for that one.
The longevity of the ground - no venue has hosted nearly as many ODIs - was rewarded with an entry into the Guinness World Records book and the presentation was made last night.
At one end, above the sight screen, a banner informed us of the same fact. Still, given that this was the first ODI between two top sides in more than eight and a half years, the occasion duly felt historic and redemptive.
The atmosphere was fit for it. The crowds were slow to get in, but even an hour before the start, at around 1.50pm, there was a hurry in the air, in the step, in the heartbeat, that accompanies the best sporting occasions.
Floodlights have been in place for some time now at the stadium so the sun long ago resigned itself to a cameo appearance.
But like the best cameos, it was memorable, drenching the stadium in that red-orange tinge only the Middle East can conjure so regularly.
The stadium has undergone significant renovation, though thankfully it retains its low-tiered intimacy.
It does not have the gleam of stadiums in Abu Dhabi or Dubai but it has a life.
Halfway through Pakistan's innings, an innings in breakdown, it was nearly full and definitely as festive as Faisalabad's Iqbal Stadium, which is the best ground in Pakistan to experience a game.
Most fans would not have minded Pakistan's top-order collapsing for it hastened the arrival of the man they had come to watch.
Shahid Afridi can call nearly the entire cricket world a home such is the reception he is afforded where ever he goes, but the UAE can rightly claim a connection beyond the ordinary. And in that home, Sharjah, where this was his 44th ODI, is his own bedroom.
He repaid them with a kind of innings he has not played in years: burdened but firm, responsible yet menacing.
The Sharjah crowd, a knowledgeable one, understood the situation's gravity. An Afridi single, of all achievements, was heartily applauded. When he took a double, they cheered knowingly.
Saeed Ajmal, his partner in a resuscitating eighth-wicket stand of 61, blocked the last ball of an over confidently, ensuring that Afridi retained strike for the next over and the crowd rose in acknowledgement. When Afridi hit the first of his three sixes, in the rough direction of long-on and Sania Mirza (the Indian tennis-playing wife of Shoaib Malik in attendance), you might have heard the roar wherever you were in the UAE.
The longer he went, the more relentless and driven became the beat to which the crowd danced and chanted: "Ah-Free-D, Ah-Free-D!" At some point, when Afridi neared his fifty - a first since January this year - the noise became self-sustaining, abuzz even while nothing was happening.
In the 11th over of Sri Lanka's chase, a little sombreness rudely gatecrashed. Our hero Afridi had chased a drive to the cover boundary. In sliding to stop it, his spikes stuck into the grass and jammed his knee hard. Immediately the prognosis looked bad as Afridi stayed down (he is not a man to stay down). A hush descended and it only lifted - that too uncertainly - when he got up and walked gingerly back to the dressing room.
Soon, as another wicket fell, spirits rose again but only when Afridi eventually returned at drinks did the drums and chants restart in earnest. In one corner of the ground there was a banner with an Indian and Pakistani flag, a plea for the return of an encounter that forms the very basis of the grand idea of Sharjah.
If it happens it can expect a venue changed, but thankfully unchanged. This is, after all, Sharjah.