For the last one week what we are witnessing is a new saga in Indian sports. Sania Mirza the Indian tennis sensation was the lead story in all the major dailies and news channels for the latest controversy related to her marriage with Ex Pakistani cricket captain Shoaib Malik. This story piped even the IPL in amount of coverage it got. Now the matter has been resolved as Shoaib has given divorce to his first wife and is all set to marry Sania on 15th of this month.
You all must be thinking why I am telling you all this as you people already know the entire story and also what does it has to do with my topic? My sole purpose of telling this is that the recent trends in Indian sporting arena indicate that there are brighter prospects for other sports star as well and sports are not just limited to cricket. It is not easy to pip IPL interms of media coverage but Sania has taken all the TRPs stating that we can even move to sports beyond cricket.
Sunil Chetri, the lad from Delhi and an international striker has made it big as he signed up with a major league soccer club Kansas City Wizard. He will be the third Indian born footballer to play in an American team sports. Chetri signing up for the Kansas has kindled a new flame in the hearts of youngsters opting for football in a cricket crazy nation. He impressed many with his speed and skill while playing practice matches for his new team and India will be hoping that he continues to do so, as his skills combined with his luck can rejuvenate football in India.
Another star who hit the headlines is Karun Chandok, he is now the second Indian to drive in F1 after Karthikeyan. He got a call from Hispania Racing team for driving their car in the F1 circuit. He made his F1 debut and completed 16th but the bigger question lies in every sports lover’s mind is will he be able to deliver? Whether he will be able to cope up with the tiring tours in F1? For now I would say that this 26 year old HRT driver has certainly given many people a reason to rejoice.
Indian shooters who always bring laurels for the nation have done it again by winning six gold medals in commonwealth shooting, while another Hydrabadi girl Saina Nehwal cracked into the top 5 badminton players list. Indian boxers led by Vijender and co. are punching the right blows.
Talks of a football league on the ranks of IPL have already started a new debate after India qualified for Asia cup. Talking of positives how can we forget Hockey world cup played this year in Delhi. Although India finished 8th but the crowd response was amazing, the ground was flocked by hoardes of people and the enthusiasm was great.
As we prepare ourselves for the commonwealth games and are lagging behind in terms of infrastructure building, the government is facing criticism from all quarters for its lethargic approach and red tapism. Many think that these games will surely revive many sports which are on the verge of collapse. If we can successfully pass this commonwealth test then the aspirations of Indian Olympic Association of hosting and bidding for Olympics will be boosted big time and in the near future we can see India hosting Olympics Games and for doing that India needs charismatic players other than Sachin and Dhonis. What India need is a new face who can provide the impetus for the dying state of sports in India. So do these Chetri, Saina, Vijender, Bindra, Adrian D Souza have what it takes to take the sports to higher avenues?
The writer is a Sports Editor of Youth Ki Awaaz