The 19th of October, 2013 was a very interesting day for Indian cricket. Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Virat Kohli’s thunderous innings against the Australian bowlers was brought to naught, some claim, by the lone disastrous over by Ishant Sharma, wherein he conceded around 30 runs to the opposition and thereby handed them the match on a silver platter. It was widely believed that after such an overwhelming hammering, the Aussies would simply not be able to take the match home but they managed to win it and people claim it was only and only because of one over that India had to face defeat.
I've been getting hateful (albeit hilarious) Facebook shares and Whatsapp messages from the moment the match was lost. Here are some of the things I received, displayed below for your pleasure:
This is just a fraction of what is happening to the poor guy for the past two days and if this was an important match, this poor guy would have probably be stoned by the crazy Indians who happen to get overzealous at anything that has to do with cricket. It is as if they don’t know that India also plays other games like hockey, tennis, badminton, rifle shooting, football, chess, billiards, boxing, wrestling among others. And it is not only the people, but also the national media that is giving rise to this notion that the only game worth playing in this country, is cricket. Agreed, India got thrown out of the Olympic Games and doesn't qualify for the Football World Cup but that doesn't mean that there isn't anywhere else where we don’t play at all.
It is indeed a sad state of affairs that other sports don’t even have a fighting chance to stay in the game, literally! I’m speaking with reference to what I've observed in Gujarat and it pains me immensely to say that though the government can build a number of cricket stadiums and to speak on an international stage, even introduces a new sport in Formula One racing, it cannot support the infrastructure of games that are unfortunately dying out due to its negligence. In my city, there’s hardly one football ground that’s any good and one hockey ground that’s bearable. Table tennis players, chess players, tennis players, badminton players, volleyball players all have to fend for themselves.
Shouldn't the State and Union governments take a look at other countries like Russia, China, Great Britain, Australia and the United States and at least try to reach out a helping hand to those who are trying so hard, despite such difficulties, to help players and athletes play their game?
And shouldn't the government try to get us back into the Olympics or that isn't necessary because cricket isn't a part of it?
Sometimes when I ponder upon this topic, I feel that there is truly no hope for Indian sports (except cricket of course).