Educational institutes need to encourage students to pursue sports so that we can produce refined people like AH Kardar
The game of cricket has been the most popular in Pakistan for the past several decades. Pakistanis eat cricket, sleep cricket, dream cricket, live cricket. The popularity of the game is so huge that there may not be one person in the country who doesn’t consider himself an expert of cricket. The impact of cricket on society is huge and the cricket enthusiasts laugh, cry and break up in sorrow with every achievement and failure of the Pakistan cricket team.
Cricket has brought many positive changes to our society. The first thing that comes to mind are the job opportunities that it has opened up. The PSL and its franchises have turned the game into an industry and apart from the players, many more jobs have opened up ranging from a marketer to a financial analyst to a players’ manager and a doctor. Moreover, when an industry starts to grow and create employment, it automatically results in the economic development of the country.
Furthermore, sports create role models and national heroes through which a nation is recognised and whom people can look up to and get inspired.
The exposure cricket gives on national and international level, especially at the under-19 stage can do the upcoming players a world of good and increase their confidence.
Another benefit of cricket is at club level when teenagers get exposure to people coming from all walks of life. They get to know about the diverse cultures which boosts the unity of the nation. Cricket binds together the whole country.
Whenever Pakistan is playing, people forget all their worries and stresses and are totally engaged in the match. Cricket serves as an escape from the stresses of life for the people of Pakistan.
The game of cricket also teaches us valuable life lessons. First, it teaches us to identify our strengths. MS Dhoni’s technique was more suited to the shorter format of the game. Similarly, if you have the aptitude to study for an MBA degree, applying for any other programme would be foolhardy.
It also tells us that we should never rely on a single trick and should always have some skills in our arsenal. Muttiah Muralitharan wouldn’t be considered “king of spin” if he didn’t bowl any other delivery other than the conventional off spin.
Cricket also teaches you to practise to improve your weak areas. If Babar Azam hadn’t put in hours in the nets his cover drive wouldn’t be admired by anybody today. Colin Powell once said, “a dream doesn’t become a reality through magic, it takes sweat, determination and hard work.” The same lesson is taught by cricket.
The problem in Pakistan is that cricket here is not played on a large scale at school level, especially in posh areas which doesn’t allow students coming from posh areas to mingle with students coming from lower-income groups.
Because of the absence of competitive school cricket in recent times, we haven’t been producing educated and refined cricketers to represent our country at the international stage. Schools have a huge role to play in this. Nowadays schools exclusively focus on good grades, overlooking sports. Consequently, we are failing to produce good student athletes.
As cricket is now on its way to becoming an industry on its own, educational institutes will have to encourage students to pursue sports which will result in more refined people like AH Kardar and Imran Khan taking up the sport. Cricket also can emerge as a solution to our economic problems, especially after the PSL being launched and cricket being commercialised. Lastly, cricket is ameans of healthy entertainment and in a country which is full of problems, cricket should be used as a way to bring smiles and joy to people and foster peace and harmony in Pakistan.