People-pleasing has no value in politics and sports. Only efficient ones are given the chance to emerge as winners in the end. During the elections, the political party declares a candidate on the basis of the past performance. It aims at winning the seat so considerations on all aspects remain under discussion. Likewise, the selection committee chooses one cricket player solely on the basis of the overall performance. Therefore selection criterion in both the places remains similar.
If the political party bets on a sure-shot candidate, the BCCI also eyes on an efficient cricketer helpful in achieving the winning target. People-pleasing, as an expression, appears so pleasant like something we would all like to make, but it is awfully detrimental to our own links. Selecting the 15-member cricket team for the World Cup is no less difficult than securing the political party’s ticket for contesting a parliamentary seat in the general elections.
This squad is the best that can achieve the goal of winning the title, as has been stressed by veteran cricketers. The present condition is different from the year 2011 and the year 2015. The politicians apply several tactics to win over the top leaders’ hearts in their very endeavor to obtain the compulsory ticket. However, the party high command did not fail to consider the traditional criterion of the past record.
This factor also applies in the game of cricket when the team is selected for the big tournament. Only the hurt player was denied inclusion for the physical fitness remains hampered in such a case. The team selection for the ensuing World Cup in England and Wales evoked a few criticisms too. One player was injured, other player leaked enough byes and one more experienced wicket-keeper was selected for the Indian squad in the 2019 World Cup.
As the World Cup matches are scheduled to be held from May 30, this year, the selectors decided to give Dinesh Karthik a chance to play as the keeper. He was part of the country’s team that had toured England in the year 2007, 2013 and 2018 respectively. Gambhir thinks Pant had still age on his side but Karsan Ghavri, former pacer, feels 21-year-old Pant should have made to the squad. His views are shared by Ricky Ponting, Sourav Ganguly, Virendra Sehwag, and several others.
However, the selectors discussed at length over the choice between Dinesh Karthik and Rishab Pant. The selectors were Virat Kohli & five others led by MSK Prasad, BCCI chairman of selectors. Prasad stressed that they were the biggest topic of debate in the selection meeting in Mumbai. We were in total agreement either Pant or Karthik will only come when Dhoni was injured.
Pant was supposed to have lost place because of his inability in controlling the ball as wicket-keeper in Southampton Test and conceded as many as 30 huge runs as byes. India then lost the Test match by a margin of 60 runs. This was the main grudge behind his failure for securing a confirmed place.
Nevertheless, part of him would feel like he failed in his amazing attempt to be in the final set of the cricket team. It somehow resembled that he was not efficient enough, or strong enough, or good enough player to ably prevent his exclusion from happening. Like, somehow he was a liability. The players go through such sort of ordeal very often. It was definitely normal, usual and routine.
Conversely, politicians have no such problem. If they are famous enough to catch people’s eyes, they are heartily and hastily accepted in the new political party. If not selected in the team they seldom waste precious time in becoming the darling of the new party with a new flag. The options remain open until the voracity of their passion for politics does not die down.