A Sporting Nation ? Hardly …

October 4, 2006 at 9:31 am 2 comments

The 2004 Olympics ended up being like most olympics over the past century. Much awaited, hyped up, athletes from all over the world convening in one city, and ofcourse, abysmal failure for India. India won just ONE silver medal, that too won by a man of the military. In fact, the town of Saratoga in California, U.S. , 4 square miles and home to only 30,000 came out of the Olympics with 2 medals (a bronze in wrestling and gold in beach volleyball) beating our nation of more than 1 billion people!!

Lets not be easy on ourselves. The word “India” is the antonym of the term “Sports Leader.” The Indian government continues to perpetuate the mistake of spending most of its money for sports on cricket. Don’t get me wrong; cricket is an extremely exciting sport and should continue to be important in India. However, a balance is required, a balance that is severely lacking today. Money is poured into cricket while countless other sports, including our national sport, field hockey, are left without sufficient funding for adequate training, programs, or development.

This shows in our pathetic performances at Olympics. We should learn from other nations such as the United States that diversify the sports that are given attention and maintain a healthy balance. While we believe that we are competing with China in terms of our economy and industry, we clearly fall far behind in sports as even such a communist nation manages to promote athletes in its country far better than we do.

The fact is that professional cricket players continue to live lavish lives while even the best soccer players or field hockey players do not receive due recognition. Action needs to be taken to harness the skill within the youth of our nation, regardless of which sport they play, and hone these abilities, such that they can be presented on an international platform rather than allow such talented individuals to go to waste.

Perhaps the action could be a 2 plank legislative move. First, to provide more funding toward developing the interest in Olympic sports within the nation, whether this takes money away from cricket or not. Second, to create more organizations and committees in charge of creating teams for such sports and organizing proper coaching as well as facilities. These committees would use the allotted funding provided in the first plank.

Besides legislative action, the government could also make an ernest effort to create awareness and encourage interest in such sports in schools. Such encouragement must be given in order to make the careers of potentially failing athletes succeed. For example, the Kenyan president offered financial benefits as well as a large house to any Kenyan athlete that won a medal in the Olympics of 2004.

It is imperative that the Indian government learns from such examples and works on its own inadequacies. The matter needs to be taken into firm hands and dealt with, otherwise the talent in our nation will be lost to history.

Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

A Sporting Nation ? Hardly … P S , Oh baby , oh baby !!

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. iamvisheshur  |  October 5, 2006 at 5:44 pm

    yes our country needs to buck up..
    as 4 the cricket still is a gud sport……bha it sucks belive me the amount of money ppl swindle is like damn much esp.the coaching classes….it is necessary funds r utilised properly…as 4 concentrating on sports tell ministers who r running away from sports ministers post…the recent interview by 1 of the news channels with bupathi shows that the condition of r country’s infrastructure is quite poor..
    we need private sponsors 4 improving r sports…and try n tell r school to organise proper teams..like at the state n central level..it too is plagued by politics!!!!

  • 2. Barath  |  October 5, 2006 at 11:45 pm

    btw, who’s the government?


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