The irony of 18th of June 2017 was, no one saw India winning, they all saw India loose. The cricket fanatic nation of India saw its national team loose the Champions Trophy Final to Pakistan. But rarely people celebrated its another national team defeat to Pakistan, 7-1 on aggregate which is a huge margin in a Hockey semi final.
This was India’s 3 consecutive victory. Hockey, as taught in school is India’s national game.
I challenge you to name 5 Hockey players. If your finger tips don’t reach out to Google then either you are a Hockey player or you are well aware of the sport. So why does Hockey not manage to grab as many eye balls as cricket? Or should we stop comparing two different sports. We would have not drawn a comparision had it not been India’s national sport. The answer lies in the miserable apathy of the state of our national sport. They say once you start winning, the glory of the sport will return. India once used to dominate our so called national sport.
● India last won an Olympic medal in Hockey in the 1980 Moscow Olympics.
● India has won the Hockey World Cup only once that too way back in 1975.
Not to take away glory from the sport but the performance of national team at World stage has been less inspirational. India has won an Olympic Gold 9 times. As compared to Cricket, Hockey has its sponsorship issues, infrastructure investment plauged with corruption, poor government policies, etc. As a result, it has been able to producess lesser known stars who are individually the best in the world but do not grab as much limelight as would a Dhoni or a Kohli.
It’s high time that we take our national sport seriously and restore its former glory. Untill then, it will continue to play second fiddle to cricket.