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Monday, 11 April 2011

Sachin Tendulkar, the Bharat Ratna or What?

As Cricketing nations celebrated in fervor, the grand finale of the ultimate championship in cricket, the ICC Cricket World Cup, in this year 2011 - fans had already started backing 'Sachin Tendulkar' for a Bharat Ratna.

The "Bharat Ratna," in India is given for exceptional contribution in the fields of art, literature, science and social service. The criteria does not have any mention of sports.

Considering the prior recipients of the Bharat Ratna are either involved in politics in the interests of the people or are exceptional in a form of art. Cricket, insofar is not defined as a form of art either.

The real question is whether a Sports Person should be bestowed the "Bharat Ratna". The tradition of the gems of India predate our colonial history. Not even in those ancient courts adorned by the Ratnas - was a seat reserved for a sportsman.

To get through the red tape, someone from the sports ministry will have to present a proposal to include sports  among the criteria for selecting candidates for awarding a Bharat Ratna. This proposal will have to accepted by the union cabinet. After this, a debate on which sport first, recollecting great names in sports, in much earlier times will definitely ensue.

So we are presented with a new problem; we seek new solutions. For incomparable commitment to a game, taking the game beyond its limits with performances that kept on eclipsing prior performances, an award that salutes the genius of the Cricketer that Sachin Tendulkar is, must be instituted and given to honor him, for he has already honored the sport, his team and his country. Looking at a Sports Award that indeed does some of what we've listed, the Laureus which has already been awarded to Rafael Nadal. All winners of this award seem to be European.

To recognize the likes of Bradman, Sachin Tendulkar, a new cricketing award can be instituted. It is most important that the award recognizes the team commitment and honors the person beyond borders. His achievements are jewels to his home nation and his team, never lesser. As a core cricketing nation in the world, we could institute an award that lauds exceptional achievement in Cricket. Should the award be given when the player announces retirement or prior should be decided. Sachin deserves a new award, one that will define cricketers and sportsmen of the future! At what better time can the ICC institute such an award?