It will be a while before the commentaries and opinions extolling the world cup victory will subside. Every small cog in the giant victory machine will be dissected, every small decision that led to the victory that might have worked only as a quirk of fate will be eulogised as a strategic masterstroke and even the minutest of the significance of this victory on the nation, society, team (the neighbours aunt, her pet and his cousin) will be magnified many times over. To be fair, this hysteria is well deserved. Man does need a reason to forget his woes.
Lest one mistakes me as a cynic, let me clarify, that the strand of thought that has caught my fancy this week is far from it. It is actually a sublime piece of inspiration that to my eyes has either been overlooked or at best may not have been given enough attention to.
Sachin Tendulkar has attained divinity in the cricketing world is now stale news. Almost every correspondent worth his journalistic salt who interviewed him post this victory asked him ‘’How does it feel to finally win the world cup after 21 years in this business?’’. One does not need to be a astrophysicist to know what he would have answered. However, apart from the predictable script of i-am-thrilled-elated-this-was-what-I-was-waiting-for he said something profound and beautiful. He said ‘’I had kept the dream alive’’.
Consider this for the man for whom there is nothing left to achieve or conquer. Calling him a genius is mocking him (Of course one cannot call GOD a genius, can you?). He is beyond a genius because he is the benchmark for genius now, the gold standard on which geniuses will be measured. He has secured his place firmly and permanently as a legend. Even a man of his calibre, his genius, his stature had an unfulfilled achievement to deal with. And how does this larger-than-life super achiever deals with an unfulfilled desire – well guess what – he decides to keep his dream alive. I always thought that recourse was for lesser mortals!
The second and the more mind boggling part of this story is that even he had to wait for 21 long years to fulfil this desire/ambition/aspiration – whatever you call it. Now, if blessed with all the talent that he does, with Gods on his side and the heavens having blessed him, with destiny delivering him and fate protecting him (these are some of the explanations that one hears when one tries to unravel the phenomena called Tendulkar) - he needed 21 long, painful, excruciating years and 6 heart breaking outings at the world cup – then heavens protect us ordinary souls. I am already gasping for breath. Have I even nourished an ambition continuously for 21 months – truly, genuinely and done all that it takes?
So here is a rapid fire round. What is my world cup? and how long am I willing to play with excellence to win it? Am I willing to give it a shot for 21 years with the same passion or will I give up in between? Do I even understand the perseverance to last with a dream for 21 years? As I said I am gasping for breath. Hopefully you have better stamina.