Indians across the globe hopelessly waited for the India vs Pakistan game on June 4 as both arch-rivals were all set to face each other after almost a year. As it was the first game of team India in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017, the cricket fans around the world were naturally way too excited to witness the epic face-off. The game commenced and, as anticipated, Indians beat Pakistan by 124 runs. Following which, the social media went into a frenzy with ‘Hail India’ chants where Virat Kohli and Co, were touted as superheroes with special powers for all the cricket fanatics out there. At the same time, we must agree that we did enjoy trolling the Pakistan cricket team with the all time favourite ‘Baap-Beta’ jibe. Because we are biased that way.
3-weeks passed and both the teams once again came face to face in the finals on June 18. The Indian cricket fans were so high on confidence that they had already declared team India as the champions. However, the team presumably kept its cool intact. They knew there would be pressure, a hell lot of pressure and amid all these, they tried to give their best. But to the horror of millions praying for India’s win in the finals, we lost the game by a huge margin of 180 runs and the same players, who were hailed as Gods, had suddenly turned into devils to a lot of people who were certain that India would get the trophy home.
The change of phase from,“Waah kya khela hai. Mazaa hi aa gaya“, to,”Kya khela yaar. Isse accha to gali ke bacche khelte hain“, is probably much painful to gulp than getting a tracer bullet on the chest. And the same thing happened yesterday.
Sure, it’s a harsh truth that we lost a crucial match but a number of people were even more upset because we lost against Pakistan. Indeed, we lost a game but we need to understand that winning and losing are the part of the same game we boast about. Yes, we lost and we should accept it and start preparing for the next challenge. However, this concept only goes with the player who plays the game but not with the people who simply watch it on their Television sets and judge the team after they lose. And if those people couldn’t control their emotions, they protest, burn posters, break TV sets or try something else to destroy the public property.
— ANI (@ANI_news) June 18, 2017
What I’m trying to state here has already been expressed by Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza after losing the Semi-finals to India. He said:
“I am a cricketer but can I save a life? A doctor can. But no-one claps for the best doctor in the country. Create myths around them. They will save more lives. They are the stars. The labourers are the stars, they build the country. What have we built using cricket? Can we make even a brick using cricket? Does paddy grow on the cricket field? Those who make courtyards using bricks, make things at factories, grow crops in the fields – they are the stars.”
Though he wrote two more paragraphs, what he I and many others who truly understand the spirit of the game want to convey is pretty clear within these lines. Moreover, it’s not only about Mashrafe Mortaza but names like Virat Kohli, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan etc. are simply human beings first and then players. They play and perform and some days just thing may not work out for them. Do they not deserve the same support for their loss from their ever-so-loyal fans? They are normal people like us. They too can fail, can have bad days. Why blame them or discourage them after just a single loss?
— ICC (@ICC) June 15, 2017
It must be noted that the Indian cricket team has given us recognition across the world after we lifted the 1983 World Cup. This is the team that proved to other nations what Indians are capable of. this is the teams that brought laurels to the country and brought people from all caste, creed, and religions to come together to support something common.
This is the team which compelled us to jump out of joy in 2002 after Beating England at Lords, in 2007 after beating the same Pakistan in World T20, in 2011 after beating Sri Lanka and becoming the world champions and in 2013 (ICC Champions Trophy) and 2016 (Asia Cup) and so on.
— BCCI (@BCCI) June 18, 2017
And right now, this is the team which needs our support instead of criticism and cuss words. If we stood by them in the 2016 T20 World Cup semifinals then why not now? Why is there a situation rising that the police protection has to be deployed outside players’ homes? WE NEED TO STOP THIS RIGHT NOW!
Be it Jasprit Bumrah or Ravindra Jadeja, we can’t just troll them in just a prick of the hat. It was just a game which was not their game. When the players who are actually out there fighting it out with other teams to make India proud have no hard feelings against any teams, then who are we to behave like this? Even our captain interacted with the opponent players generously after the game ended and kept the spirit of the game alive.
He also congratulated the Pakistan team and said:
— ICC (@ICC) June 18, 2017
Now it’s time for us to leave the past in the past and move ahead. We love our Team India and we should always stand by its side no matter what the situation is. They are our national heroes and they’ll always be!