Why is it so difficult for us to accept that Team India is going through a collective rough patch? We don’t shout at our politicians for years of non-performance, for wasting precious tax payer’s money by boycotting Parliament months on and for playing with the countrymen and women’s sentiments at every possible opportunity. So why should our cricketers – rightly or wrongly elevated by us to the positions of leaders, role models, idols, in some cases even demi-gods – have to pay with their contracts and salaries for non-performance?
Before blaming the players for their recent poor run and the debacle in the one-day series in South Africa, especially the match in Durban that triggered the issue, you need to ask some questions to the people who run the game. First, why did the BCCI not schedule enough practice matches in South Africa? Second, why did the Board not organise a coaching camp for the players at Mohali so that they could adapt to the pacy conditions? Third and most important, where is the bench strength in a cricket-crazy country like India? And finally, why not give a chance to the performers rather than try our old paper tigers?
It’s time that the young players in the side are brought under the tutelage of the seniors and even be sent to the greats like a Sunil Gavaskar and a Kapil Dev. Cricket is much more than scoring runs and taking wickets. It is about attitude, it is about wearing your heart on your sleeve, and it is about understanding the honour that has been bestowed on you. Under no circumstance, should money and other materialistic tactics be employed to tamper with the soul of the game.
Md Ziyaullah Khan