Manoj Tiwary is all set to make his debut for India against Bangladesh on Thursday. Aakash Chopra, the Indian opener (who writes quite well, I might add) once wrote this about debuting for one’s country –
All of us, irrespective of what others think, strive for excellence and endeavor to become the most important member of any group or team we represent.
If you’re an international cricketer, chances are that you’re the most important member of the state or county side you play for. There’s a conscious pride and responsibility in that and it’s a feeling that often inspires you to do well and provides the ideal scenario to do so.
It’s different when you’re the newest (and most expendable) member of the squad. You need a boost. Walking into (what is suddenly, even at home) an unknown arena for the first time, hoping and believing you’ll succeed is nerve-wracking.
There might be no demons in the wicket and the transformation might actually be very smooth but till you haven’t done it yourself, it’s one of the world’s great mysteries.
I hope all newcomers to the Indian team get the much needed “boost” from the seniors. The media needs to stay off their back and allow them to settle down. Immediate comparisons to a Sachin, Kumble, Kapil or Gavaskar will only add more pressure. The fans shouldn’t read too much into their immediate success or failure. Just give them the time they need…and let’s hope for the best.
Good luck, Tiwary. No matter what, enjoy your cricket and play your natural game. Once you do that, success will automatically follow…