WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!!!
India won! The cool captaincy of Dhoni and fabulous performances by the whole team helped India reach its ultimate dream. In the past, Indian team was criticized about its sloppy fielding or for being too dependent on Sachin, but this time around, they came all guns blazing; they were confident, calm and had a plan. Gary Kirsten and his team focused on dealing with mental strength and pressure management.
Cricket is not just a sport for India, it is a religion. Indians are passionate and fair-weather supporters, they enjoy India’s good performances, but get mad when India loses. They don’t love cricket and enjoy watching a good game, they love it only when Indians are playing cricket well. The last 3 matches made everyone’s blood pressure was sky high in India, people’s heart stopped when Sachin got out and we were at 31/2. Cricket has been India’s passion, and it is the one thing that unifies everybody–rich, poor, across all cities and religions. Cabs stopped running, offices gave time off, Indians overseas woke up at all odd hours of the day just so they could watch the game. The match gave India something to sing about.
But the problem with the game is it has been tarnished too much. India and Pakistan matches are nothing but politics, prime ministers watch it together, and it is a show of diplomacy. Somehow it is no longer just a game, it becomes a statement of current affairs. And it becomes the breeding ground for controversies. The media pushes the players to comment on the politics, and eventually the issue becomes blown out of proportion. I love a good India Pakistan match, it is a classic rivalry, similar to Ashes but I dont want it to become anything more than that. Give us the game, and leave the politics.
The other issue about the game is that it is no longer about which team played better. There have been too many scandals of match fixing and cheating for people to have faith in the game, it becomes the favorite excuse of the losing team’s supporters.