Saturday, September 03, 2005

Sania and the great indian hope

This artice was published in Times Sports ..........i am convinced this article was in direct response to my blog "Does TOI represent the changing Landscape of Indian Sports"

Between the Lies
By Bobilli Vijay Kumar

Something like this has not happened in a long , long time : the indian cricket team chased down almost 280 runs for a fabulous victory but was still not the top sports story of the day .
Could this be the percusor to a paradigm shift in Indian sport?Or is it just another pointer that Sania Mirza has well and spunkily arrived ,gliding on her sizzling forehands?
We don't know yet ;what we know ,though is she is going to play the top seed of the US Open and yet the entire country is excited .Normally, we would have groaned and exclaimed ," Poor Ramesh , Poor Leander "and got on with our lives .
This time ,though ,everybody is looking forward to the beautiful clash .Maria Sharapova will , in all probability,blow away sania with just her grunts .But somewhere , deep in many Indian hearts, a tiny flicker of hope is desperately trying to rise , to become a crescendo .
At the start of the year , of course , nobody would have given her even a ghost of a chance ;today ,that ghost is taking shape , and some feel,or at least hope ,that it will take the contours of a miracle .
You don't need to watch Sania on court to see the fire in her belly ; you don't have to hear her at press conferences to visualise the storm in her heart .Her full success story is ,in fact, hidden in her stats : 102 winners to 150 unforced errors (in her last three matches ).
She clearly loves to live dangerously: She goes for her shots from start, middle to finish . Every stroke is either a winner or an unforced error ; there's no middle path for the intrpid .She aims for the lines and ends up getting the jugular.
She may have jumped over 150 ranks to 42 in a year ; but she has gone much higher in the space of the last three matches . In the beginning,she was a true - blue bseliner,glued to the back of the court; now she has started rushing towardsthe net ,sniffing for those volleys and suddenly those rallies are finishing far more easily and quickly.
Overyears , India's sportspersons have acquired the reputation of being soft, of being short on killer instinct.They have also been accused of freezing on the big stages.Sania is not like them :she revels on the big stages ;she plays the big points with a bigger heart . Yes she makes but she does't get intimidated by them .Some time in the future ,she will surely learn to reduce those mistakes. The day the gap between her winners and unforced errors reduces,or even better , enters positive territory,she will become a Top-tenner, a force to reckon with .
That moment , cricket, or at least India's cricketer's , will lose their pre-eminent positions to Sania Mirza. Maybe , that day is not too far away .



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