‘When Your PM Stands With You At An Hour Of Loss, It Lifts You Up’
Former Indian Cricketer Gyanendra Pandey says Prime Minister’s visit to the men in blue after their defeat in World Cup final was an emotional moment for cricket fraternity. His views:
At the recently concluded ODI World Cup Final, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the Indian cricket team dressing room after the shocking defeat. This was a moving gesture. Being a leader, he decided to share emotions at a loss that broke hearts of crores of fans and Indians.
It was an unexpected result for the formidable men in blue and what many did not notice was that the PM, and the home minister Amit Shah reached the stadium at a time when a definite defeat was on the cards and even a miracle could not have altered the result. Even a good number of spectators started leaving the stadium and I personally saw many bigwigs and celebrities silently leaving the stadium before the completion of the match.
As PM’s programme was declared much before the match and everyone, including the players, were aware of his presence, many thought that looking into the proceedings (the end result), the visit would be cancelled. But to everyone’s surprise and the players, Modiji not only stood there but also went ahead to meet the players in the dressing room much to their surprise.
Though UP CM Yogi Adityanath had already announced the construction of a cricket stadium in the home town (Amroha, UP) of Mohammad Shami, it was a pleasant surprise for him that the PM not only counted his achievement but also gave him a soothing hug.
When the country’s leader stands with you at the time of loss, it lifts the team up. It is a special moment. I could personally feel what the players would have felt like as I was also a part of the team. It was an outstanding gesture simply because I know what a dressing room feels like. It is a gut-wrenching feeling and when you are down then you seem that you are out but when you get someone special coming and visiting you, it is something massive as it lifts the spirits of the players for future accomplishments.
It would surely prove to be an energy booster for the future. In a moment of empathy, Modi not only told the players to smile as the nation watched them, but also emphasized that, despite the defeat, the team’s exceptional performance throughout the tournament had made the entire nation proud.
The visit went beyond symbolism as it also served as a genuine show of support and motivation as he moved from player to player and shared words of solace and encouragement at a time of dismay. Modi not only reassured the team that setbacks are inherent in the game but made them feel that their hard work had not gone unnoticed and unappreciated.
There were also some harsh and unethical criticism of the entire episode and some went beyond all ethics to utter disrespectable and unwanted words for the PM, but such acts should be avoided not only after such an event but also at times when the country stands united for some cause.
As told to Rajat Rai
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