Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Bleeding.. Turquoise?

Since when did Pakistan become our biggest adversary? And no I haven’t been living under a rock =/.

Like how about either of the teams opens a couple of beers and says, “In peace bro, enough of this nonsense, you can have the match if you want to.”

I know I know, this is not practical. And the game should go on, no need for this idealistic blabber. I agree with you. I’m just saying, for argument.

Its quite terrifying for me to think of the millions who have called in sick today or are not studying for exams, to sit at home and hope that Pakistan loses. I was asked to pray that India wins. Why do we Indians wait with bated breath for Pakistan to LOSE?

Exhibit A: “India has taken peace talks with Pakistan a bit too far by gifting them a place in the finals of the World Cup.” This is what a friend of mine had to say. This is racist, as far as I'm concerned, and hardly nationalistic.

I have never feared for my life, more than after this post =/


WatchDog said...

Well if someone tries to mix politics with cricket it never goes well. But otherwise it's all cool.

Sports have a lot of emotion tangled in them, it can't be denied. It just has to be expressed properly. :)

N. said...

But your point get's lost. What is it? :-/

N. said...

But your point get's lost. What is it? :-/

Anonymous said...

Why not the same level of 'unity' (more like sheep mentality) for India playing against any other country? Pakistan was once a part of our country. Why the strong mania and dislike for only Pakistan? People's status messages for the past week have read - "Bring it on Paki! We'll rape your sorry butts and send you back home crying!"
-"All Pakistan supporters - go cross the boarder!"
Its more political than 'being passionate about sport'.

Anonymous said...

Since when did patriotism become supporting grown men running around an over grown garden holding planks of wood, chasing a ball and screaming like Nimhans escapees?

kicking.and.screaming said...


@ N
Ok I proceed to it.

@ Anonymous
I’m not sure what you may be saying but I think I understand, and I explain below.

Anonymous has said exactly what I was thinking I should add to the post after I finished it.

That is: why THIS intensity for THIS match against THIS opponent. And this is what is of concern to me.

Because indeed any sporting/ competitive event requires a passion and faithfulness, and rivalry is a given. But the problem is, that ‘Indo-Pak cricket rivalry’ (each term in that phrase is of significance as individuals and in relation to the whole) is of a different kind, and a kind that I am questioning.

I fully agree with Anonymous, that tensions are only SO high because (and this is apart from “cricket being a religion in India”), of political reasons. If this nationalism was just about cricket, it would have been like this with every match. But this is about Pakistan losing to India, and not just about Pakistan losing/ India winning.

And because this is about a land issue and not sports, I am concerned.

@ Anonymous comment # 2
Haha, HAHA, theyre going to kill you, and me, we just won!

WatchDog said...

Anonymous, regarding your post about patriotism and planks of wood:

That's what you think about cricket? What is patriotism to you? Shall I simplify all acts like you did?

What is patriotism?

Getting shot and dying for your country while wearing impressive uniform.

Waving piece of tricoloured cloth twice a year while singing a song written by a man ages ago that people fail to understand the meaning of, and mispronounce, mostly.

Is it?

Did you not see the same level of unity against Australia? If not, you haven't been following the world cup carefully, I'm sorry.

Why this level of intensity for this match against this opponent?

Because this is a semi-final, of the tournament that gives you the biggest prize in the sport. That's why.

Anonymous said...

Cricket has always received higher priority than religion or politics in our country. I think it's the only sport that binds every Indian together. Indians give each other a tough time but when we play another country, we all collectively support the same thing.

With Pakistan, given the history, things are expected to be very tense. Even in EPL Football, any fan who openly supports their team at an away game is going to get murdered. Sporting rivalry is closely entwined to the relationship the two entities share and we have a very difficult relationship with Pakistan.

Agreed, all this is not good because it spreads intolerance and goes against our very own roots of secularism but imagine if we lost. Oh the fun then.

Anonymous said...

Hello Mickey. What are the goings on of your world? :)

(At the risk of sounding like Yogi Berra) A game, in any sport, is always more than a game, especially at the international level.

Take the WC- India had to beat Bangladesh because they had (essentially) knocked us out of the previous WC.

India had to beat Australia because of the 2003 debacle.

India had to beat Pakistan because Pakistan was, well, Pakistan.

India had to beat SL (and basically everybody else) because it was Sachin's last WC and deserved to win one.

Do you see what I'm getting at? There's always a storyline. The storyline creates as much interest in the match as the sport itself.

Take, for example, the ultimate Cinderella story- the US Ice Hockey team in the 1980 Olympics. They beat the Soviet team (considered by most as invincible at the time) in a match than was way, way, way more than just a Hockey match. The political context of it (Afghanistan, Cold War) created a rabid atmosphere within the stadium and people travelled from practically every state in US to watch that match. And it wasn't even the deciding game for the Gold.

The game created such a vibe that Sports Illustrated carried, for the first and last time, a cover page with no words on it, merely a photo of the entire team sprawled on the ice in jubilation. This is celebrated as one of the biggest sports moments in American history.

A game gains significance only when there's a story, there's a context.

I'm sure the fact that it was Pakistan didn't matter to the players. They wanted to win the WC, simple as that. But the story with the crowds who watch will always be different.

I wouldn't read too much into the game as a measuring stick of public attitude towards Pakistan. People said much the same about the Australia game. The difference with Pakistan is that we've had heartbreaking losses to them them time and again in the past. Tends to rankle, especially with the senior generation. For example, my dad still talks about the Ind-Pak test at Chennai with a great deal of bitterness.

kicking.and.screaming said...

Hello Sho, come to charm us all havent you :)
Hm, so sport watchers flip channels during breaks and politics uninvitedly changes their sporting attitude.
You werent saying this I know, Im 'reading into' it as you advised against.

Anonymous said...

Oh, thank god you're alive! We were all so very worried :(

I've mailed you :D

RestingInPeace said...

I agree with what you say, there definitely are a lot of people this applies to. But there are other classes as we, in sizeable numbers too. There is the purist cricket fan, who wants a good game, there is the harmless person who really cares not, there is the person who doesn't mean what he/she says and, of course, the person who actually does want India to win and not Pakistan to lose.
And, we can attribute this to more than political reasons. There is a tendency, as humans, for us to find some sort of release, if you will, and tell me, is there anything easier than this?
oh yeah, we hate the Aussies almost as much now, too.