M is the dominant motif for 2014, MSD walks into the sunset




Who would have thought that as the year 2014 signs off, M would again be the dominant motif that would create a sense of unbelief associated with the year? Yes, 2014 was the year when Malaysian Airlines just vanished into thin year, a Mallala emerged as the voice of the downtrodden and the poor but the Captain Cool popularly known as MS or Mahendra Singh Dhoni stunned all his fans when he announced an abrupt retirement from test cricket and ensured that for the year 2014 M would be etched as a motif in its core whenever annals of this year are flipped through in posterity.

MSD walks into the sunset

MSD walks into the sunset

It is the critics who are crying hoarse and baying for his blood that he should not have resigned at this juncture, forgetting about the fact that a Kim Hughes quit captain ship in the middle of a match; a Adam Gilchrist decided to call it quits when he dropped a catch. Moral of the story is that it was the voice of the conscience as also sense of fulfillment about the fact that the dressing room that he is leaving behind is a dressing room which is a heady concoction of youth, exuberance, sense of chutzpah and they should be given an opportunity to make their place in the sun on their own, rather than under his overpowering presence.

It never is easy to call it quits and the spot lights are a temptation that forces the players to continue to keep on playing, though they may have become a pathetic version of their glorious self. Dhoni did not want that to happen for him so he decided to quit when signs of decline started making their appearance in the nascent shape of sprouts.

He has been an idol for an India that exists outside the metropolitan cities, and through his conduct and performance had given hope to millions of young people out there to have faith in their dreams and continue to strive to achieve it. By quitting at the appropriate time Dhoni also gave the message to those who have emulated their career on him, not to live in the basked glory of the past but call it quits at the first opportunity.  Which other cricketer can one quote as an example but a Dhoni who allowed Sachin Tendulkar to cast the spotlight on him after the ICC Cricket World Cup victory though it was his bat which had done the talking. He just faded into the background.

His quitting has been equated with a general who quit his post at the battle front without bothering what would happen to his soldiers. But can his quitting be equated with a situation on the battle front? Dhoni has trained guerrillas who are ready to strike it out when the situation demands and has instilled a sense of pride in them which otherwise was not to be seen in the Indian cricket team.

His has been the career that did not follow the established path and norms and it is the surprise that has been his defining motif. He has been the gambler and he has come out winner whenever the chips are down, and his decision to quit has to be respected and his monumental contribution should be applauded rather than sinister motifs are searched behind his quitting.

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Suman Rai

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Transition from the field of sports to being a commentator on sports is a change that has come quite naturally. Cricket has been a passion manifest from the craze to listen to the commentary hiding the radio inside the quilt when she warmed up to the excitement of cricket. From that stage the real flame for passion for cricket was lit and growing up in Bangalore with neighbors of the likes of Prasanna, and Rahul Dravid, cricket has become an alter ego. The passion got further accentuated with the advent of Indian Premier League and the intoxication continues to catalyze innovative writing for cricket in its all encompassing view.

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