India cricket fans are short-sighted and myopic. One good performance by Team India can erase unpleasant memories of the recent past — both on and off the field © Getty Images
By Prakash Govindasreenivasan
Time and again Indian fans have defied logic. After all the charges of corruption and malpractices
on players and team owners that transpired during the recently-concluded season of the Indian Premier League
(IPL), one would have expected the Indian fans to lose faith in the sport. Yet, thousands of them turned up at Edgbaston on Sunday
, waited patiently for the rain to stop and eventually saw their side lift another major trophy.
The question here is: Have fans done enough for the sport they love so dearly?
Indian fans have the reputation of being an emotional lot. It’s not uncommon to see Indians fans conduct religious ceremonies ahead of a major tour or burn effigies when the team loses. They tend to oscillate in the extremes. However, what’s appalling is their indifference when the sins in Indian cricket have been committed behind the scenes.
The turn of events following Delhi Police
’s allegation of spot-fixing during the IPL 2013 saw Indian cricket at its worst. Things began to fall apart as some of the bigwigs in the board squabbled among themselves and played the predictable blame game, while the Indian television media followed them everywhere and magnified every minute detail. When all of this was happening, the average Indian fan was largely mute.
Fans have been the first to criticise a poor performance and shower praises on the exceptional ones, but the same fans have been rather passive to the backroom wrong-doings. Opinions fly around when a rash shot is played, or when a poor decision is made, but the shambolic handling of the affairs within the Board of Control for Cricket in India
(BCCI) has been met with unfortunate indifference. It is unfair that the fans associate themselves only with Team India, while the appalling things that are perpetuated by those calling the shots from behind are ignored.
India cricket fans are short-sighted and myopic. One good performance by Team India
can erase unpleasant memories of the recent past — both on and off the field. A spirited show by a young Indian side under the inspirational leadership of MS Dhoni
helped erase the scars of the spot-fixing and corruption that cropped up not too long ago. While, it is true that the win came as a soothing balm, it is also unfortunate that a big controversy and sham like the one that unfolded in the IPL has been almost forgotten and buried under the carpet.
Over the years, BCCI has gained a stronghold in the cricketing fraternity and has earned the reputation of being the world’s richest and hence, the most influential cricket board. More often than not, they have misused their power at the helm and often arm-twisted other boards to see things their way. They have thrived on the fans' ability to move on from a major downfall to a rise, even if only momentary.
The booing that N Srinivasan got at Eden Gardens
during the IPL final presentation ceremony was a one-off show of public ire at an Indian cricket administrator. Despite running the risk of sounding like propagandist, it must be said that unless the decibel levels rise against the devil-may care attitude of Indian cricket administrators, corruption in cricket is not going to be eradicated. Vox populi
is powerful. The sooner the Indian fans realise this, quicker will be the changes in Indian cricket.
(Prakash Govindasreenivasan is a reporter with CricketCountry. His Twitter handle is @PrakashG_89)