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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Ace archer Deepika Kumari in tears - thanks to arrogance of media

Onions make people cry and so do TV serials ! ~ both are most sought after still !! as tears make compulsive viewing; more so when the person in tears is famous and the one liked by the viewer – sympathy factor has been selling not only in TV but in political arena as well. Often the 9 PM news of many English channels [in India] start with the presenter screaming the news claiming it to be ‘live and unexclusive’ in unbridled enthusiasm…. Sensationalism !

the golden archers - foto

Captain cool is a cliché often used to describe MS Dhoni. MSD has   tasted success in all formats of the game, and that too in just four years. Australian great Greg Chappell calls Dhoni the best captain in the world today. Former Indian skipper Kapil Dev, who led the country to its first major cricketing triumph - the 1983 Prudential World Cup - has no qualms in accepting that Dhoni is a better captain.  The transformation of MSD, from a long-haired pinch-hitter to a suave captain is dramatic.  He burst on the scene in 2004 as a small-town boy with a penchant for whacking the ball out of the ground;  Captaincy came his way in September 2007  when many stars opted out of T20 WC ~ then there was the IPL – in between he had the guts to claim rest and opt out of a tour…. He has seen continued  failures in England and Australia too… yet he never wears his emotions on the sleeve and is mostly undemonstrative. 

There was another exponent [his losses made me cry – though he remained stoic is another matter] – with his punishing topspin ground strokes,Lendl won eight Grand Slam singles titles, reached the final of at least one Grand Slam tournament for 11 straight years;  advanced to 19 Grand Slam finals -  was ranked No. 1 for 270 weeks – had many honours – but never could win a Wimbledon.  Lendl had to move away due to back injury – has a relaxed life and is now coaching Andy Murray. It is stated in matches involving Andy Murray, Lendl would look more like a modern art - with his arms crossed, or his chin resting on his left hand;  reserved and serious rarely showing any emotion.

Men are generally strong and hide their emotions well ! ~ remember the sad end to Andre Agassi's 20-year career  beaten by German qualifier Benjamin Becker [no relative to more famous Boris Becker] at the US Open.  Agassi was clearly affected by the chronic back injury which hastened his decision to retire. Backed by a fiercely patriotic crowd, Agassi battled courageously but Becker's power proved too much. The man thought as a legend was shattered and was in tears. He was crying on the ground and later on screen too……

Now the Nation is concerned with the cry of the wonder girl who helped Team India win its second successive gold at the Archery World Cup in Poland. Deepika and co beat the Koreans 219-215 to follow up their gold at the stage 3 meet in Medellin, Colombia — where they had beaten China…… back home, she cried unable to bear the pressure of media – seeking ‘exclusive interview’  

Reports suggest that the jet-lagged archer did provide time for interviews but later sought them to be a common one as she had to leave for a flight – in the argument that ensued, some journalists had questioned her attitude which pushed her in tears.  Deepika, the star of the Indian women’s recurve archery team that won the gold at the Wroclaw World Cup in Poland, along with Rimil Buruily and L. Bombayla Devi, was much in demand during the media interaction at the residence of Archery Association of India (AAI) president V.K. Malhotra.  Though there was no grand welcome arranged for the winners, several news channels gathered at the airport. Most managed to get sound bytes from all concerned. However, things escalated when the TV channels demanded individual interviews and Deepika was left a distressed individual amidst a crowd of ‘admirers’.

TV footages show one of India’s best sportspersons, Deepika Kumari, breaking down in tears. The anchors showed no mercy, no compassion and all they wanted was an exclusive, if it was to be the tears of the athlete that make up the exclusive.  It is media serving their brand of aggression. 

Firstpost reports that a cameraman followed every move of the archers, forcing Deepika to request him to move away and let her eat breakfast with the team coach. Instead of acceding to the request, the cameraman taunted the 18-year-old, saying Deepika should actually be grateful for such media coverage. Deepika along with the remaining members of her team, Buruily and Bombayla, tried to do as many interview requests as possible. But then with time running out and the team scheduled to fly out to Aurangabad in the afternoon, they requested the remaining TV crews to conduct combined interviews instead. Things went downhill. A couple of reporters insisted on ‘exclusive’ sound bytes. Then a reporter accused Deepika of being arrogant by refusing to talk individually to everyone. That’s when the 18-year-old broke down.

The Q put by Firstpost is: what does it take to make an athlete cry? In most cases, one would say it would be injury, defeat or triumph. Wiping her tears, Deepika said she had not slept for more than 24 hours, had a headache because she had not eaten since morning and was rushing to catch a flight.
deepika in tears - the hindu photo

Can they try doing this with suave Sunil Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri or with ice-cool Dhoni…….. or a Leander Paes…  the quest for one-on-one interviews isn’t new. Though the point of it is rather lost – the questions usually are the same that were asked in the press conference. And most of them don’t even know the sport well enough !   should TRP rating down the morale of sportspersons ! ~ why and how should somebody invade the personal space.

Deepika – Nation wants you and others – we are appreciative of you and are proud of the laurels that you have brought… no need for any exclusive interviews ….

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

with inputs taken from

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