Tuesday, 28 August 2012

The pooh-poohed "Seconder"

Coming second is the only sugarcoated self-inflicting crime in this world. You earn accolades but you loathe your very own existence. A bronze medalist is more content than the silver ribbon holder. He doesn't expect the world to remember him and is just ecstatic to reach the podium. What about the one standing on the block labeled "2", our dear seconder? The answer lies probably  in another question - "Who will be more crestfallen, the one bowing out in a semi-final or the one who lost out in the finals?" Just when the trophy was so near....

Everyday life exhibits many instances of the dismissed seconders. If you are planning to board an air-conditioned bus in India, that bus has to be a "Volvo", regardless of the manufacturer. Yes, it feels strange sitting in a Mercedes built bus holding a Volvo ticket. And Likewise it is eerie to land into a photocopy shop with big bold "Xerox" printed all over but running a "Canon" machine. Yes, you have got it absolutely right. No matter what imprints Canon machine or the Mercedes bus leave upon the Indian market, seconders will always be laggards because they were not the first to arrive.

There is a saying - "Either come first or always remain a shadow of the former". Only if Edwin Aldrin had known this, I am sure that he would have run out of the capsule ahead of Neil Armstrong to become the first ever moon-walker. Sometime I wonder if it is invention of the superlative terms - fastest, richest, earliest etc  that has made this discussion all the more complex. Until we get over this consummate mindset of ours, one will always prefer to fail rather than to come second.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Taste the Indian Flavor, Olympics

The exhilarating highs and lows of the biggest sporting actions will continue unabated today. Where as US and China are fighting out for the coveted top spot with 18 golds each, India will be looking to climb up the medal tally bagging up a few more. Action Today :


Athletics events will finally blow the bugle today. If Krishna Poonia manages to better her personal best, one can expect her to pull a bunny out of the Olympics hat. Om Prakash Singh and Mayookha Johny should be looking forward to leave a mark.


After receiving a bye in the previous round, Vikas Krishan takes on Errol Spence (USA) in the Round of 16, late night today. After Vijender Singh, he can become another Indian boxer to make it to the QF, if he manages to pull this through.




After a dismal defeat against the kiwis, Indians are left in a do-or-die situation. They will take up the formidable Germans in the evening today. Only if Nobbs waves his magical wand...


Shooting has been India's forte so far. After getting India a bronze, Gagan Narang will be hoping to better the feat in 50m Rifle Prone. Accompanying him will be Joydeep Karmakar.

Vijay Kumar must believe that he can continue his good run in the 2nd stage of 25m Rapid Fire Pistol.


After a series of ego clashes, controversies, first round exits, I must say that watching Leander Paes and Sania Mirza beat the Serbian pair yesterday was a treat to the eye. They jelled up well and complimented each other perfectly. However their task will be cut out when they meet the 1st seed, Victoria Azarenka and Max Mirnyi in the QF today evening. Official start for the match is not announced yet,  but it should be somewhere around 1800 hrs IST.


And finally, the biggest of all, Saina Nehwal taking on the World No 1, Yihan Wang in the Women's Badminton Semifinals today. Saina has already created history by becoming the first Indian to enter the Olympics SF in Badminton. And as they rightly say, it is CHINA vs SAINA.

The complete guide for the Indians in action goes as (click on the yellow links to follow action):

Individual Events

1330 hrs   Saina Nehwal                                          Women's Single Badminton SF
1330 hrs   Gagan Narang and Joydeep Karmakar       Men's 50m Rifle Prone
1430 hrs   Om Prakash Singh                                   Men's Shot put Qualification
1455 hrs   Mayookha Johny                                      Women's Triple Jump Qualification
1500 hrs   Vijay Kumar                                             Men's 25m Rapid Fire Pistol
1800 hrs   Paes/Mirza                                              Tennis Mixed Doubles, QF
 0200 hrs  Vikas Krishnan                                         Men's Boxing (69kg), Round of 16

Team Events

1815 hrs   India vs Germany (Hockey)