Boxer Vijender has not only boxed out Ecudaro's Carlos Gongora from the ring, but at least for a day he has boxed out 'cricket' from Indian hearts.
August 20, this day will go down in the history of India as a day in which crores of Indians waited for a game other than live cricket on TV. Well, for once, the whole of India is looking up and noticing and more importantly following the other sports where India is faring well in the international arena.
Indian masses breathlessly waited for the India's Olympic boxing matches than a India-Sri Lanka cricket match. Expectations were running sky high on Vijender and Jitender. At the end of the day their hopes were not shattered, VIjender out punched Ecudaro's Carlos Gongora and stormed into the semi final of the Olympics, assuring India a medal!
Could this be the turning point in India's sporting chapter? Will there be encouragement to take up sports such as Shuttle Badminton, Table Tennis, Wrestling, Boxing, Shooting, Archery where India is emerging as a real force to reckon with? The moment is right now! Can India grab it? We shall see the results in the very near future. Is this beginning of end for Indian cricket....I personally hope so...
Cricket- A national waste
George Bernard Shaw described Cricket as a game where 22 fools play and 22,000 fools watch. Minor change in Shaw's words to reflect the modern Indian reality. 'Cricket is a Game where 22 fools play and 22 lakh jobless fools watch and 2200 fools in Indian media comment and analyse this stupid Game'....that is cricket in India.
Cricket a time-consuming game or in other words is a time wasting game for the people who take interest in it. It wastes a whole day for millions of people in India. This is also one reason why European and American nations abstain from this game.
In Cricket, there is no sport now. There are no sportsmen. There is only money. And even the match-fixing controversy which has hogged the limelight for years now has succeeded in reducing the passion for the game. Any match we win or lose, people on the streets just utter, 'May be it was match-fixing'. Such is the displeasure in this game...
Cricket claims a higher loss of social time than strikes and lockouts do in industry. During the last World Cup, an agency calculated that if India were to reach the World Cup final, the sport's fans in our 81 million television homes would have 'lost' (spent) 106.5 million man-days in front of the Idiot Box. This is more than 3.5 times the number of man-days lost to strikes and lockouts (30 million) in a year!
Do you know why Adolf Hitler banned cricket in Germany? Once he was watching a match that went on and on. He kept asking when it would be over, and someone told him it would continue the next day and for the entire day and well into the evening. He said, 'By the time this stupid game is over, I could have conquered three countries.'
Cricket killing national game
It appears that hockey is considered a national game just for namesake. The Government neither supports financially nor does it respect Hockey as it does for cricket. Sponsors too prefer only cricket while spectators end up giving more importance to this game even though they may love to watch other games. Why should players of other sports be offended and humiliated for the sake of Cricket.
The immense media attention for this game has reduced India's status and rank in a game like hockey where India has such an excellent tradition and record. I believe India has a better record in hockey than what Brazil has in soccer. This year, for the first time in 80 years, the Indian hockey team has failed to qualify for the Olympics. That is a greater shame because hockey also happens to be the National game of India. Though, no doubt, the poor administration of the game is a major cause of the downfall of the game, yet the undue importance given to cricket is a factor too.
Cricket not a sport
Cricket is a game which is totally against the concept of sport. Sport should above all, give exercise to the players. How does cricket justify this in terms of the time spent? Cricket is a game in which only two players out of eleven play, while the others can choose to play cards or even sleep, and two players of the other team (the bowler and the wicket-keeper) sweat it out while the others keep trying their luck in the field. How are we to account for this colossal waste of time, not to mention the huge sums of money spent on it, in the name of playing a game?
Who Plays cricket?
Cricket is played in only about 8-10 nations in the world. So even if India manages to reach the top in this game one day it will not get true international recognition and appreciation. I consider it to be far better to be in the top 30 in sports such as soccer than be at the top in cricket. 2. The popularity of this game is by all means restricted to the Indian subcontinent only. It has clearly lost ground in the West Indies and England. They don't play cricket now with such vigour and attitude as they used to do before. I don't know why we are going after it when even England, where cricket was born, doesn't give it too much attention.
Cricket a rich man's game
Legendary broadcaster John Arlott had once said sport reflected its society. It truly does. It is no hidden fact that Cricket has always been a rich man's game in India. Here cricket is considered as an elite game and all other games are dirty games. Though cricket is considered as a religion in India it does not take away its elitist nature.
Believe it or not, the 4 pc Brahmin's in India have on an average more than 70 pc representation in the Indian cricket teams. As of my knowledge only two dalits have so far represented India in his 75 years of history (Balwanth Paloo from Karnataka and Vinod Kambli).
I belong to that part of India where soccer has overtaken cricket in popularity and my home is hardly 2 km away from former Indian captain IM Vijayan. Vijayan, hailing from poor dalit family, began his life by selling soda bottles in the streets of Thrissur. Vijayan from the depths of such poverty rose to become one of the proudest footballers of India. Soccer can boast of many rags to riches story like Vijayan. Can cricket tell one such story?
Indian cricket has always alienated the marginalised sections, the deprived, the lowered castes, the ethnic nationalities and dalitis.
While the British used it Cricket as tool to maintain their imperialistic stranglehold, today it is being very well used by the capitalists (still the same old ruling/trading class) to maintain the great divide in India.
Future of Indian sports
Its high time to kick off cricket fanatics from Indian soil...throw out stupid Mandira (bodies???) who shout blunders in Idiot box... and pave the way for other sports....
Focus instead on the boys and girls swimming in the country's many rivers, on those running barefoot to and from school on baking-hot roads in remote villages of India. Keep your eyes on the boy who dribbles like a little Ronaldinho on wet sand, and for the one who controls a ball made of rags with an improvised hockey stick. Pick them and groom them... You will see how golden India's sporting future can be.