Which comes first, country or the club?

While Sachin Tendulkar has come out in support of his teams and has gone to the town announce that the current Indian cricket team is still the best in the world, the comparative performance within a matter of fortnight, i.e. between the IPL and the ICC World Cup forces one to question the attitude of certain players, and their commitments. The two players who need special mention under this category are Zaheer Khan and Harbhajan Singh. Both these players performed exceptionally well during the IPL matches while they were totally off-colour during the ICC World Cup matches.

Does the form suddenly abandon a player in such a short span of time? It leads one to wonder whether playing for money is more important than playing for the country. Such had been Zaheer Khan’s performance that he had to sit out for two matches during the ICC World Cup and he is supposed to be the spearhead of Indian attack.

It is illustrative to analyze the performance with reference to the comment that Indian cricket captain, and Captain of Chennai Super Kings had made after winning the Cup! He had remarked that playing for the club was more prestigious than playing for the country. Well, if such is the commitment then the performance that has been reflected is a clear outcome of the same.

If a player does not have the pride in its national colours, then it is high time players having this kind of attitude are picked up in the Indian squad. After all, the current crop of players are making huge money from IPL, so let hem make money in the IPL while players who have the commitment to play for the country need to be bed into the team. One thing that has to be driven home among the non-players is that they have to perform or else they should be shown the door. Thanks to IPL a second crop of players is available in abundance and they would give their right hand to be in the Indian team. As Pakistan has done, weeding out the non -performers setting aside the experience and reputation, same needs to be done with the Indian team as well.

Perfect opportunity has been presented to the selectors to give the Indian team a new shape and tell the world that it cannot take the things lying down. After all, job of selectors is also to pick up players who bring pride to the country by their performance.

By: Suman Rai

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