Indian cricketers need to be disciplined, says diaspora
Indians around the world are disappointed - indeed disgusted - with India's humiliating exit from the World Cup.
Moans Shan Gupta from Melbourne: "Almost every NRI wanted to see India win. But that was not to be. Professionalism was totally missing. The first casualty should have been Sharad Pawar (the cricket board chief) after India's poor display."
Gupta is not the only one complaining. "I am really disappointed with them... I guess now I have to support Bangladesh," is the acid comment from Deepak Kharbanda in Los Angeles.
Now that India is out of the World Cup, the Indian community in the US is selling its air tickets and entrance tickets on the Internet at throw away prices.
Rajan Jamnadass, a Kenya born finance executive, has this caustic comment: "The ruddy lot should be made to sweep the streets till kingdom come! My wife and I are travelling to Barbados April 12 to see the Super Eight stage of the Cup and we have the 'Follow India' tickets. What a shame India will not be there!"
On second thoughts, he adds: "But never mind, there's always the beach and the rum! The annoying thing is I can get the beach and rum 300 miles down the road!" referring to Mombasa that has just as beautiful beaches as Barbados.
Joginder 'Joe' Singh maintains it is good that India was defeated at this early stage. This may trigger interest in hockey, football and other sports.
He thinks India cannot afford to waste so much time and energy on cricket. The sport has become a money-spinner for players more interested in endorsements than playing, he feels.
"Indian cricket is now almost rotten to the core," complained Shamlal Puri from London. "Their players have become demi-gods and no one dare lift a finger to discipline them.
They are spoilt brats who needed to be disciplined or thrown out if they performed poorly. What with the 'influence' syndrome in India, even lackluster players remained in the team.
India needs to overhaul its recruitment procedures and bring out the cream to play, irrespective of who they are."
Alluding to the chant of Indian cricket fans ('Cricket is our Religion, Tandulkar is our God'), Puri says: "Indians have faulted to a large extent giving their cricket players the status of gods. They should be hired and fired on the basis of their performance and no favours shown irrespective of whether you are Tendulkar or Ganguly.
The government should stop rewarding their cricketers with land and treat them as any other sportsmen."
Indian origin players like Nasir Hussain and Monty Panesar are generating interest in cricket among NRIs.
But it will take time for football loving NRIs to turn to cricket. NRI's who have recently come from India (or Pakistan) watch cricket irrespective of age and turn out in full force at cricket venues if they are playing in Britain.
Younger NRI's, especially born in Britain, are totally into football as they align themselves with the majority of the population. Those born in the US go for baseball and netball.
In Australia, the young NRIs are into soccer, rugby, swimming, hockey and just marginally into cricket.
It's the same story in Canada where ice hockey is very popular. In Gulf, cricket reigns supreme with NRIs and Non Resident Pakistanis, Sri Lankans and Bangladeshis.
One Australian radio station gleefully reported: "Greg Chappel's India has been defeated by Sri Lanka." Now when did Chappel take over the Indian team? 'Lucky' Kaushik, an avid cricket fan, says: "As a coach, Chappel has sabotaged the Indian team's performance. He is a secret agent who worked for Australia. India does not need a foreign coach."
Tendulkar scoring a duck in two World Cup Matches has incensed many fans. "After this pathetic performance, how can anyone talk of making Sachin the captain again? Why aren't these ageing players not retired from the game?" asks a disgusted Kaushik.