Angry on the podium

It was 6th October 2008 and my birthday. It was a special day. I was in Bittburger, Germany and I was scheduled to play the finals of the Bittburger Open Grand Prix against Maria Febe of Indonesia. It was only the second time an Indian woman since Saina Nehwal, had broken into the finals of a Grand Prix event in Badminton. I was ready for the final. I was having problems with believing I was playing the final but I was keeping all of that aside and was focused on winning.

Please read the remaining story on Scroll.in below

http://thefield.scroll.in/815623/what-the-heartbreaking-story-of-an-angry-athlete-on-a-medal-podium-tells-us-about-indian-sport

 

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12 thoughts on “Angry on the podium

  1. Aditi – First, hats off to you for pressing on and your fighting spirit. Secondly, I feel our (Indian) population is much to blame for … population to resources ratio has forced and molded our society’s outlook towards anything that does not have a power to grab these resources … hence so much push on engineering and medical fields, barring some sports like Cricket, sports and other routes as INCOME paths are seldom encouraged … and now over the generations, this has gone down into deepest parts of our psychology … our thinking. On this side of planet, when I see my daughter being coached from Swim meets here in US … I can see the difference first hand! Here in US the mentality is so different and I tend to believe mostly because of the population to resources ratio … this is a “Land of Plenty” and India has now merely become a “Land of Many”!!

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    1. Thanks Piyush Dada. Though I agree with you that population is a problem. I really think it is also our strength. We just need to change the way we look at sports and work towards encouraging a sports culture.

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  2. As you said, you are not alone and sports is one area and, the same is equally applicable to others too..we step in only when they struggled through and achieve something and ignore the vast majority who could well be champions but unable to make it solely because they didn’t have the means to get there….

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  3. Aditi has been one of the top and best players in badminton till, 2005 on courts she was the strongest player against Saina Nehwal Most of the time they met in finals. She suffered with major injury on courts in Chennai during this season 2004-5 and after that she was not too much seen on the courts,but still she came back and won national championship too,later suffered with paucity of funds to excel at international level is thought provoking and touching to heart. We fell sorry not to help this wonderful player when she came back. Her services can still be used by asking her to motivate the young kids to opt for sports and fight back the paucity of funds and malnutrition.
    Wish u all the best in your future endeavours in life. GOD bless you.
    Dr Harvir Singh Nehwal

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  4. Read it 5 times and made many others read. It’s thought provoking and stirring.

    As an entrepreneur, am going through days like this, cutting expenses and lifestyle to reach a dream. The struggle still is no where close to yours or anyone others representing the country. This was a morning dose of inspiration and will last a long time.

    Keep writing! You’re smashing it. 🙂

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  5. Hmmmmm…… I just went through a similar struggle trying to raise funding for a world record breaking electric vehicle I’m developing here in Bangalore. I tried the crowdfunding method and it quickly became clear that the crowd in India just does not care. All the task forces i n the world will and can not change anything. We are lost as a nation in the blaze of white glory, white man’s advice, white man’s engineering, white man’s money…most India youth will spend 5,000 rupees on a Man United T-shirt, the software people in India paid 16,000 rupees for a 1.5 hour stand up comic, where a canadian fool essentially insulted them….all our priorities are upside down…I hope you are coaching Aditi and if you are, your wards are in good hands…

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  6. Hi aditi. You don’t know me. But I read your article and it just made me feels the same thing that am going thru today. Yes I am a tennis player ranked in top 30 in India. Yet struggling to find a sponsor. Am 21 yr old. I decided to give up tennis and start my career as a coach so that I can continue playing. What a well written article. I really hope this effects the way people loom at athletes. Both me and my mother were broken to tears while reading it out. You truly inspired me. I remembered the days when I had my budget during tournaments abroad. It’s so true. Hats off to you. Indeed a letter of bitter truth.

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  7. Incredibly sad, but the reality of sports in India. We as a public don’t respect sports and what it does to a person. e.g. adds to one’s confidence, adds to one’s sense of discipline, you understand and calibrate challenges better, one pushes oneself….nobody has written that story of sports and its impact on life….(i will check Abhinav Bindra’s book – he seems like one who has asked and answered these questions).

    I do hope you find the joy in picking up a racquet again and playing again and and teaching young kids in whichever country you are in.

    Best wishes,
    Santanu

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