Tribute to the fans

Cricket has come a very long way. It has reached the heights of popularity in the recent years which no one could have imagined when it was first invented.
In this article, I salute the billions of die-hard fans of cricket for their spirit and enthusiasm to show up in large numbers in the stadium to support their favourite team. A sport is incomplete without the viewers and cricket should be lucky enough to have such a fan following throughout the world. The credit for the coming up of cricket goes to the fans.

As a player, when I bat and see my fellow mates cheer for my every good shot, I feel good. I feel motivated to bat even better and take my team to victory. If I feel like this, I wonder what the international players might be feeling when thousands of spectators cheer for them. I think that the cheering and shouting of the people give the players a morale boost to go out there and play their best to win it not for themselves, but for their fans.

This pressure of fans and their high expectations is the reason why we see some high level of competitive matches. Both the teams feel motivated to win it and thus play hard and bring joy to the spectators. I find it a privilege to witness a match in the stadium in which the tables turn every now and then and the match seems like anyone's game till the very last ball.

But at the same time, I feel that the fans should maintain a code of conduct. For example-

The Cuttack Incident
Last year, India played a T-20 match against South Africa in October in Cuttack. Put into bat, India collapsed for 92 runs. Angry and disappointed fans hurled missiles, mainly bottles, on the ground. The situation was intense and the police took control of the situation. However, when South Africa was cruising towards the total with 64 already on the board, the spectators once again started throwing bottles on the Indian players for their horrible performance.
 This kind of behaviour cannot be accepted. The fans are going to feel bad when their team loses but they have to accept the fact that winning and losing are part of the game. Their favourite team cannot win every time. The fans should instead take it in a positive way that their team is going to learn from their mistakes and come back strongly in the next match. Ask yourself-"Do you throw valuables when the team does well? When the team does badly, you have no right to throw rubbish."

Support cricket
Many a times I have seen that the home team gets 90% of support in the stadium and the visitors hardly get any support. As a player, I think you get demotivated when you hit a boundary and no one even applauds for your shot. Therefore, I would like the fans to support cricket at large and not just your favourite team. I would want them to cheer for every good shot, ball or piece of fielding even if it is from the opposition side’s player. I would like them to stand up and applaud for the effort of a player who played well but just couldn’t take his team home.
In the above picture you can see that SA hit 303. De Villiers made a brilliant 100. What I found amazing was that though an opposition player hit a 100, Indian fans got up from their seats and bowed down to that player. They showed their respect and appreciation for that player’s effort. This is what real cricket is - to respect the player even if he is from the other team. I was proud of these Indian fans. I hope all the other fans respect not only all the players but also the game at large.

                                                                                         Jai Vanvari
                                                                              Official CIA Correspondent