New Delhi, Oct 10 (UNI) Former hockey Olympian Dhanraj Pillay is unhappy with the manner in which Sourav Ganguly has been treated by the cricket establishment in the country.
Pillay, who was one of the best strikers in the world in his prime, and is the hero of many epic Indian victories in hockey, was himself at the receiving end of some pretty rough treatment by the hockey bosses in India.
''I feel really hurt when a senior player is treated like this.
It is unfortunate. We have given our heart and soul for the game.
Don't we deserve a better farewell,'' Pillay said.
Pointing out the weight of pressure and expectations on the seniors players, Dhanraj said,''senior player is next to coach.
In our country, people remember one bad performance and forget past nine good shows. They constantly criticise you which is wrong. Same happened with me and now with Sourav. Despite playing well after the comeback, he was compelled to announce his retirement. It is sad.'' The mercurial striker reminisced about the way he was treated by the previous hockey regime led by KPS Gill.
''I have experienced this myself. I have been thrown out of the team when I was inform and cent per cent fit also. I had couple of years of international hockey left in me. I am still playing in the domestic circle,'' he stated.
The Bangkok Asian Games gold medallist revealed his pain and mental trauma at being dropped from the Indian team after the Athens Olympics in 2004.
''I couldn't sleep for weeks and months in anger. I felt humiliated as they did not give any reason why I have been dropped.
I thought that it is the end of my life,'' he lamented.
Pillay also felt that age should not be the criteria while selecting the team.
''There should not be any kind of junior senior ratio. Form and fitness, not the age should be the criteria for the selection. If a player in his 30s is performing well than there is no reason not to pick him,'' he asserted.
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