India is still without a medal at the olympics. And that’s alright.
Recently some aging socialite idiot hag tweeted about how Indians athletes are useless or something to that effect. Needless to say, and justifiably at several levels, lots of people ganged up against her. But let her be. She is as unimportant as her myopic opinions.
However the truth is – a nation with a population that is threatening China’s baby making ability has failed to make an impact at the greatest sporting event in the world.
As an Indian, I don’t care. And the reason is simply this.
Indians don’t send their kids to concentration camps that train them to win at all costs. While these winning kids from winning countries learn how to win, a lot happens back home. Parents fall sick, grandparents die, but the champs never get to hear about it.
Our kids stay at home and learn to play cricket or tennis or football. They come back home from a gruelling practice session to hear their mum or dad or granddad tell them a story. They go to school. They have a life. A normal life.
And India has still managed to create a lot of sporting champions if you look back.
I will enlist the ones I have loved and enjoyed watching, over the years. But am sure there are more that I may not be aware of, or recollect. So here goes, in no particular order.
P. T. Usha. Sachin Tendulkar. Sunil Gavaskar. Ramesh Krishnan. Vijay Amritraj. Abhinav Bindra. R. S. Rathore. Mary Kom. Sania Mirza. Saina Nehwal. Leander Paes. Mahesh Bhupathy. Milkha Singh. M. S. Dhoni. And most importantly, Dipa K, our latest superstar.
This list would have been longer had I thought more. But the fact is there is no dearth of talent in India. Talent of any kind, including sporting.
So cribbing about not winning a medal at Rio (so far) is stupid. We have our champs and we love them.
They win sometimes, they lose sometimes, but they always make us proud. They make India proud.
But most importantly, our champs are brought up normally, unlike countries that train their sportspersons who believe winning is everything.
Our champs are champs too. But they are humans, not robots programmed to win.