Disclaimer: I am a Sachin Fan and I am upset by the fact that Maria Sharapova doesn’t know about him.
It might look like I am being devil’s advocate here but then I do belong to the group being called devil here. To be honest, I found out about it just now and it seems that I am a little too late to the party. People have apparently abused Sharapova and people have come out and defended her.
Ironically, I got the news from the articles that were condemning all the hoopla created by the fans! I guess I am not that big a fan after all or maybe, just not a fan who is free enough. I read a lot of articles that give examples of great players of games that are rare like Ice Hockey and even Basketball and try to make us realise that it is not a big deal. Then I read a lot of comments by people who were demeaning the angry mob and telling them to take a chill pill. According to them, it is not a big deal if Maria Sharapova doesn’t know the name of the greatest player India has ever produced in a game they remember to be on top of.
It should be noted that he is not the only great- Dhyanchand was for Hockey what Sachin became for Cricket.
Anyways, coming back to point, let’s be clear on one thing here. Maria Sharapova’s not knowing about Sachin is a BIG deal. Not because she ought to know a random player of a random game but because the person has transcended the game itself. Like Pele or Maradona, he defines India and its hope. He was even given the highest honor we can give to any person. So, her lack of knowledge about the man shows her lack of knowledge about the country.
Now, I am not a patriot so I do not think if this alone is a big deal. However, Sachin is often said in the same breath as Federer, Schumacher and Woods. Sachin and Federer are friends as well (close acquaintances perhaps). Sachin is a fan of tennis and has gone to watch Federer sometimes as well and it has been a big news (not just in India). This shows that she has not even heard about these events that are closer to home. This shows that she is either far too dedicated to her craft to even hear anything during those periods or simply did not care enough.
In either case, it just shows that she has other things to do instead of knowing current affairs or General Knowledge and when you are in top 20 in any sports, perhaps that is what lead you there.
Last and most important, in a world of intellectuals why are we surrounded by people who define how should be felt for an occasion. It all sounds to me the same argument as between Theists and Atheists where atheists act have more holier than thou attitude than those who believe in a holy God. Just because it is not a big deal to you doesn’t make you superior. It just makes you impassionate about that cause.
So, bottomline, feeling upset about this is natural. I am sad and a little aggravated by this as well.
However, as with religion or a dick, just because you have it, doesn’t mean you flaunt it.
So folks, be angry, be upset but do not be what that person is not whom you are in awe of.
Lashing out against Maria Sharapova for not knowing Sachin is like killing anyone who says Gandhi was wrong!