Editorial - Sri Lanka: Tea, sea and cricket

7 October 2012 06:33 pm - 1     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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It would matter little whether Sri Lanka today wakes up to a shining ray of victory or under a cloud of defeat. With the unbending unity it has cemented in the Sri Lankan culture, cricket has certainly done its duty and justified its long existence.

Being a cricket fan in Sri Lanka is a lot more than what one sees on the television screen. There is an intricate picture beyond the painted faces, houseful pavilions and fluttering Lion flags. These were the people who lived in fear of death for the last three decades. For them, stepping into a stadium during the troubled times was committing suicide. Yet, there were the brave who thought dying among the stars was a privilege. Yet, cricket survived every ordeal; so did the cricketers who gave people the much needed inspiration to go on living when the country was literally burning from all sides.
What one sees in the hundreds of Sri Lankan fans who throng the stadiums to support the home team, is none other than gratitude. It is their way of saying ‘thank you,’ for fuelling them with hope.



The 1996 Lahore heroics relocated Sri Lanka in the world map from its invisible position. Since then, the cricketers have become unofficial diplomats who, at times have done more service to the country than those who are officially appointed. Instead of the conventional epithet of ‘sun, sea and sand’ the game made tourists come looking for tea, sea and cricket.  

As much as the island culture accommodated cricket, the game has enriched the Sri Lankan way of life, injecting it with a queer uniqueness. It has made us a nation that knows the complexities of the game better than maths tables and the art of punctuality that surface only on certain days.
Despite the wavering favours of the officials and critics, the cricket lovers’ loyalties towards their sportsmen have remained unshakable. Unlike the former who do not show up at the airport when the team returns after a tough tour, the fans know better than to abandon them. Ours is not a culture that encourages people to pelt stones at their houses or burn effigies in public; for, we know they are no demigods, but humans who are by no means paragons of perfection. We believe in their good days and those of their opponents.

These loyalties cannot be forced out of them nor are they created for green billets and lunch packets. Those who rally behind the cricketers do not do so out of fear for power—rather out of love and respect. It is about bowing our heads to any worthy sportsman, irrespective of his religion, social status, ethnicity and caste.

It is the understanding that, whether they are victorious or otherwise, they are men of this soil who have paid their debts.
Cricket teaches the lesson of unity to anyone who is eager enough to learn. Only, the fans should know how to make it perpetual rather than seasonal.
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  Comments - 1

See Kapruka's top selling online shopping categories such as Toys, Grocery, Flowers, Birthday Cakes, Fruits, Chocolates, Clothing and Electronics. Also see Kapruka's unique online services such as Money Remittence,News, Courier/Delivery, Food Delivery and over 700 top brands. Also get products from Amazon & Ebay via Kapruka Gloabal Shop into Sri Lanka.

 

 
  • Renu Monday, 08 October 2012 10:47 AM

    President the Jonnah? as he described earler that matches he attended Sri-Lanka has lost. As a matter of fact his entry was the exit of Sanga, Mahela, & Mathews. Things to come


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