Indian Hockey is a rapidly fading light
‘If the games are played in a stadium called Indian desert, then surely the game of cricket can be compared to an oasis and the game of hockey can be compared to a mere mirage’
The above quoted lines clearly reflect the sorry state of Indian Hockey. The Indian Hockey team which won the inaugural Asian Champions Trophy in Ordos, China was rewarded a paltry amount of Rs 25,000 each by Hockey India Federation. Obviously, this is not the way to treat the heroic ambassadors of the Indian National game. Regardless of winning or losing games, the Indian cricketers, with the strong backing of BCCI, make a huge fortune. These days, cricket is becoming more like a business than to be a game; such a lucrative business is obviously going to spoil the spirit of the game. However, when it comes to Indian Hockey, it is a totally different story for the hockey players are paid peanuts for their world class performances. The Sports ministry and the Indian Hockey Federation have forgotten the fact that if you pay peanuts, you will get only monkeys. Let it be any game in India like hockey or basketball or badminton or tennis or football (excluding cricket for it has got nothing to lose, at least in India), a strong national team can’t be build without proper funding. The Indian Hockey Federation is expecting the players to play with the strength of their bones and how will that ever be possible. Sometimes a bold statement has to be made for the good of all – ‘If cricket loses its almost religion-like status in India, then the other games are bound to flourish’. But will it happen? Let’s wait and see……….