Sunday, July 02, 2006

of trust, heartbreak, and redemption

When Cafu handed over the Brasilian captain's arm band to Dida before being substituted, with 12 minutes to go and his team trailing in a world cup quarterfinal, he also entrusted his teammates with what was going to be an important part of his legacy. He could take no more part when his dream was being actualised.

Watching that moment I felt that was what defined teamsports: to put your trust in your teammates and ask them to put theirs in you. Maybe many years ago, this scene had been enacted but with Cafu as the arbiter of someone's destiny. And now, life was coming a full circle as generations shook hands across the touchline and a baton was passed.

When Zidane consummated a sublime pirouette over the ball ( a 180 degree turn for the football savvy), belittling 2 Brasilian defenders and commingling ballet with soccer, it wasn't just a piece of skill, or a move of brilliance. It simply could not be just that.

It was a moment frozen in time, set in stone for eternity. For me, whenever I'll remember Zizou, the European championships, world cups, world player of the year awards wont come to mind. Memory will be an ageing 34 yr old who had the gall to do something which even younger, maybe better legs, wouldn't dare to. This moment will define him in my consciousness forever.

All the heartbreak in sports (penalties, you may say going by the current mood) is more than compensated by those few specks of time when your heart speaks out through your game. There is no pressure, no doubt. Only pure, unadulterated joy. Inexorable. Unforgettable. It is for these fleeting instances that any professional sportsman goes through years of painstaking effort and carries an almost unbearable burden of public scrutiny, pressure and many a million hopes

Sometime back (in 1999 mostly) when Manchester United had won the European Championships, Dwight Yorke, their striker then, was asked about how he coped with the intense pressure, the media frenzy. He replied that his job involved no pressure. Nothing in comparison to what families in Sudan, reeling under a famine, had to bear to feed their chidren.
That statement, very much, put things in perspective.

Trivia: When Henry volleyed Zidane's cross into the back of the Brasilian net it was the first time in 56 matches that they've played together that Henry scored of a Zidane pass!!


Matt K said...

France win against Brazil today. I couldn't have chance to look at it but I don't know if France play well today. Was good team back in 90's but not any more.

By the way, do you want to find out if you are a workaholic?

I found one site recently
It is kind of personality , behavior test kind of thingy. It is sort of quiz.

I am a workaholic according to the result. :(
See what you got.

Have fun guys.

PritS said...

In the end, winner was the game of football. No luck played, only the skills of player affected the result. Realy amazing moments to witness.

parryhotter said...

Bab'z u amaze me..................
i m short for words!
keep writing mate!!!
n i 'll read em now n then..
God bless...