Wednesday, June 15, 2005

SACHIN STAND UP

Another cricket match was organized-this time at Lord’s to collect relief for the victims of Tsunami. Tremendous talent was on display. Indian viewers had a mixed day with Ganguly failing to post a big score as was the case with Sehwag. But what hurt the most was the failure of Dravid. Of course, Laxman showed why he is the most underrated batsman of the Indian team. Then there were the wickets to Kumble and Harbhajan. It was Kumble who got the Man of the Match award for the telling contribution.

However, the biggest cheers went to a player who was not playing the game-Sachin Tendulkar with even claps from the man who handed over the mementoes. It was very much un-British like. This shows the popularity of the man across the cricket playing lands. Wonder, if any other player ever got or would ever get such recognition.

But sadly, Sachin never utilized this facet for the general betterment of the game. There was a complete silence when the game of cricket was engulfed by the biggest scandal-match fixing. If it was so all-pervading, surely, it would not have escaped the notice of Sachin. But he remained silent. It was left to players like Rashid Latif when views of Sachin would have sealed the matter forever.

Ganguly is respected for the support he extends to youngsters who he believes in. But Sachin never backed any players other than those who came from Mumbai. He is a person who always appears or rather wants to appear as politically correct. He is averse to take any kind of unnecessary risks outside the cricket field. The great Kapil Dev once backed a few players in their fight against the BCCI with regard to some masala matches played on North American soil. The Board responded by suspending five players. Sachin can never be expected to come up with such determination.

If Sachin needs to remembered not just as a great player, then he has to stand up. There cannot be any better person who can do this.

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