The Indian team of blind cricketers recently won the T20 World Cup for the third time in a row by defeating Bangladesh at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. Even after this achievement, 10 players of the 17-member team are unemployed.
World Cup-winning Indian captain Ajay Kumar Reddy on Monday urged the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to support cricket for the blind, saying it would bring professionalism and financial incentive to the game. The Indian team of blind cricketers recently won the T20 World Cup for the third time in a row by defeating Bangladesh at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru. Even after this achievement, 10 players of the 17-member team are unemployed. For many of these players, lack of financial support is causing ‘difficulty in pursuing the game’.
Many players are ‘busy’ in some other work for livelihood. Reddy, who scored a century in the final, said, “We have won the World Cup for the third time in a row but we do not have any main sponsor.” It is very difficult to play when we know that we do not have any work to earn a living so that we can feed our family.
The BCCI had in April last year recognized the ‘Differently-Abled Cricket Council of India (DCCI)’ to promote the game among differently-abled, deaf, blind and wheelchair-bound participants. According to G Mahantesh, president of the Blind Cricket Association in India, not much has changed since then in terms of support for blind cricketers.
“The BCCI is sympathetic towards all of us by providing us infrastructure and training facilities, but we also need financial support from them to bring in more professionalism,” Mahantesh said. Reddy, who helped win the titles (2017 and 2022), is unhappy with the delay in drawing up a future roadmap for blind cricket. Reddy said, “Recognition (from BCCI) has been done but there is no blueprint for our game, no one knows what is happening. We have brought glory to the country on the cricket field as well and deserve a central contract (from the BCCI).
Disclaimer:Prabhasakshi has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.