How Divine Intervention Didn't Save India at The Oval
The 2011 World Cup victory managed by the Indian team in the subcontinent was owed to players being god fearing and devotional by then team manager Ranjib Biswal. Hanuman Chalisa was a regular feature in the Indian dressing room. Here in England, no scripture can save India from the criticism they deserve.
Cricket and superstitions always go hand-in-hand. It is said that even the legendary Sachin Tendulkar used to put on his left pad first while going to bat each time. However, the current Indian team during their tour of England has gone one step further in clinging to escapist tendencies. (India lose inside three days again, England clinch series 3-1 Â | Highlights)
On the third day of the fifth and final Test match of the England tour at The Oval, cameras showed a strikingly odd painting fixed on the Indian dressing room wall, and it turned out that it had words of Hanuman Chalisa inscribed on it in bold, big letters. (Dhoni adds more records despite India's poor loss)
On the pitch, a resolute Joe Root had reached his 5th Test hundred and the English lead was nearing 300. England were later bowled out for 486 but only after piling up a humiliating 338-run lead over the clueless visitors with Root remaining unbeaten on 149. ('Team India has shamed us')
Â India's fascination of mixing religion with cricket, however, is nothing new. Captain cool Mahendra Singh Dhoni is known to visit various kind of temples near and far from his home in Ranchi, and others like Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh have been in the news for similar kind of extensive temple tours. (James Anderson elated after 'happy ending' to English Summer)
Â During the 2013 Indian Premier League Final between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians, it was advised that the Hanuman Chalisa should be played in the Chennai dressing room, with the orders most likely coming from former BCCI chief N. Srinivasan. (Alastair Cook lauds England's character in series win)
Â What's more? The 2011 World Cup victory managed by the Indian team in the subcontinent was owed to players being god fearing and devotional by then team manager Ranjib Biswal. Hanuman Chalisa was a regular feature in the Indian dressing room. (India lost confidence, says MS Dhoni)
Â "Our players are very superstitious and god fearing. Each had his favorite gods and goddesses. The dressing room always reverberated with bhajans and patriotic songs. The players also carried their lucky lockets while playing. Throughout the tournament not a single morning passed without Hanuman Chalisa being recited," Biswal had told Times of India after India's historic second World Cup victory. (Livid Dhoni slams batsmen, ducks questions on captaincy)
Â "Sankat se Hanuman chudhawe," (Lord Hanuman rescues from troubles) goes the popular Indian scripture. However, India seems to have forgotten the age-old adage that reminds everyone of how God helps only those who help themselves.
Â Team India may have lost the series 3-1 to England and the form of star players like Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara might be painful but what is even more disheartening is this lackadaisical attitude where the Indian shoulders have dropped even before putting up a good fight.