1.The person Loves the Game: There are no two words about it. If a person does not like a particular sport, then it’s best to drop it then and there. No good can be derived by parents forcing their children to do things they themselves once liked to do and did not have the opportunity to do. Neither should anyone take up a sport to identify himself with a peer group. This is one of the reasons why children go through harrowing experiences of frustration, disappointment and utter humiliation when they do things for all the wrong reasons. Anyone, aspiring to follow the example of our country’s very own cricketer Sangakara, would do well to emulate him only if he has that inner desire for the sport and not the glory that goes with it. Remember, glory is impermanent and fades away. Every sports personality will one fine day have to gracefully or otherwise leave the sport to the next generation. What remain will be the good memories in the hearts of his countrymen, friends and fans.
2.Plays by the rules of the Game: No game can be called a game if there are no set rules. Just to cap it all, I shall relate to you an incident which occurred not long ago. This was in the year 1997, and was the World HW Boxing match. Mike Tyson rips off the ear of his opponent during the fight. That was “THE Rip Off of the Century” if you ask me. I am sure that Sri Lanka’s former Veteran Boxer and current President of the SL Boxing Referees and Judges Association, Donald Munasinghe would not think much of Tyson. Any way Mike Tyson was infamous for hurting other little things apart from what I mentioned here. He has a long string of records showing how he liked playing dirty. Did he really have to do it? Couldn’t he have used his sparring techniques and raw strength to good use? Why did he have to throw a punch and hit his opponent below the belt as it were? I am sure you would agree with me that there is not much fun if the result of a game is known from the start! The rules define the level of playing field.
3.Promotes the principles of the Game: Yeah! Principles, principles, how so inconvenient. Very rarely does any one stand up for principles these days. Most people sit on them and squash them to pulp. Principles are for sissy’s they feel and not for the elite or those who demand to be treated right royally. Haven’t you met these types ever? I am sure you would have. In contrast, the principled sportsperson is one who is principled “on” and “off” the field. Know what I mean? The principles that this person will be reflected in all his very words and deeds and not merely putting on ‘airs’ at it were.
4.Working as a Team: Have you ever played with a rich man’s son? The game is an outright bore. Sometimes you do get dynamic personalities who dominate and insist on having their own way. That’s not the team building spirit. Each player in the team should have a fair chance of proving his abilities. Strategically a person can be placed in a vulnerable position and the inevitable happens – He fails to perform! How devastating for the guy. In situations where there is an exceptional player in the team and he demands respect from the rest of the players and insists on having the best position, the coach needs to take cognizance of this and correct this negative trait. He should firmly understand that the synergetic equation “The sum of all its parts is greater the whole”. Most “shining stars” ultimately end up “fallen stars”.
5.Fair play: Ensures that there is a level playing field. I am told that the small grounds at Hyde Park Corner, Union Place rests on a tilt. I have no grounds to prove this as a fact. But what if it’s true? Wouldn’t it be unethical? Conversely, what did you personally feel when cricketing critics condemned the bowling actions of Ajantha Mendis and Murali? Weren’t your inner sense of justice and fair play affected? This is a natural feeling.
6.Guides others for continuity of the Game: One does not hear of players coaching other players, except when they themselves became a professional coach. How far will they go to give a helping hand to a fresher or an up and coming player? Will their bloated ego’s prevent them from giving some advice or will they use that opportunity to chastise them and mock them until they give up the sport. I tell you, I hear of many of such personalities and it’s rather sickening to note that they still feel good about themselves regardless of their behavior.
7.Is humble: Any one player needs not be the center of attention in each and every game he plays. The ‘man of the Match’ award is given to one player and not the entire team. One day it may be Pietersen and another time Broad. That’s how fair play based on achievement works.
8.Realistic: Realizes that unforeseen circumstances may befall even the swiftest. This statement is self-explanatory.
Credits: Thanks to NS and BB for your undying assistance in compiling this article.
Last edited by Rocky on Sat Aug 06, 2011 4:06 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Spelling)