Thursday, June 18, 2009

Why are our Cricketers exhausted?

Exhaustion is being cited as the main reason for the Indian team's abysmal show at the World Cup. Personally, I'm not much of a cricket fan, so the loss didn't bother me that much - in fact, seeing how we were playing against England, we most definitely did not deserve to win that match.

But why exhaustion? How much cricket are these guys playing - about 5 or 6 matches in the World Cup, and before that, in April/May, about 12-15 matches. So that's 20 matches (of 4 hours each) over 3 months. Even given that each match is a highly physically taxing exercise, and there's net practice daily for a few hours, why is everyone that tired? Don't people work 60-70-80 hour weeks continuously for much less money/travel/comfort/fame/glamour?

To quote a blogpost from my ex-employer, The Times of India, "After six gruelling weeks, the IPL ended on May 24 in South Africa. Within a week, the team was playing practice games in London. Which is why the team looked jaded." Well, most people I know work 5-6 months straight before they can take a week off, and it's considered to be a decent break. Why is it so less for our exalted cricket team?

Other reports say that the team, after playing so much cricket continuously, had lost the will to win. Oh please. Pace bowlers citing physical exhaustion is one thing, but players saying "Sorry, playing for our country, earning all this money, getting all this exposure, traveling to all these places and staying at the best of hotels is not enough to make our job interesting. Please do something to spice it up a bit" is a bit much, isn't it? Why do we feel the need to blame extraneous factors for the team's lack of motivation? I can't ever recall a time when I was able to quote "Lack of sufficient motivation" as a reason for screwing up at work!

Once again - this is not a rant about the team's dismal performance at the World Cup. I haven't heard anyone in the team give this reason as an excuse for their failure. (Though obviously they wouldn't - they can't afford to be seen as critical of the IPL - but that's another story). This is merely befuddlement at all the people citing fatigue as the main reason for our exit!
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