Sit back for a second and recall all the sporting heroes you have adored, and you will reel out an endless list like the following till you have to pause for a moment to catch a fresh breath of air:
All of them enjoy iconic a legendary status across a myriad of games, attracting us like bees to their nectarine illusion. As tireless magicians, they are the stuff of our dreams night and day, perpetual heroes who get paid for living our fantasies. Indeed, in truth, while being mere ordinary mortals in an otherwise immortal arena of glory, they enjoy a page in history for unparalleled tales of victory, as surreal gods. It seems like an obsession, our attempts that stop at nothing to land these legends’ autographs, or the pride in claiming a rendezvous with any childhood icon.
Ever wondered what transforms a common man of our humble beginnings to an end so much like a fairy-tale?
The answer is simple – Victory!
All these men and women we adore are sporting heroes who make success an enviable habit, mastering excellence and perfection, while courting extended immortal moments of brilliance on the court. They have only one formula to life called victory, and turn up every single time on the court with a scent of history in the making. While apparently seeming so simple and sweetly worded, its difficulty is reflected in its uniqueness, and the pompous celebration of its attainment, with the pedestal of supreme beautification. All of them boast of a career decorated with innumerable victories over a lifetime barring a few occasional defeats that serve as a reminder of their forgotten or ignored mortality. And it wouldn’t be wrong to assume this incessant ritual of victory as the reason of our unending adoration of such living myths!
But are victories the final marker of glory?
Some of the brightest and shrewdest captaining minds like Cronje and Azhar, or bowling wonders like Aamir or Asif, are reduced to tainted villains in the back drop of match-fixing. Great patriots who capture medals, bringing pride to a nation on the world circuit at the Olympics, are overnight defamed and branded ‘a shame’ owing to scandalous doping. Years of earned glory and reputation could vaporize in the dawn of even a lie.
The very popular ‘Hand of God’ goal from Diego Maradona counted in the final scoreline, registered among the game’s unforgotten relics, is still argued as a mistake. A hand goal could win you games, but not hearts. A winning penalty in the game’s dying moments from its favourite darling’s feet that uplifts half a world would still be considered unfair if granted undeservedly purely on the merit of the player’s dramatic actions. Making it to an elite ‘FIFA World Cup semi-final’ would still be loathed if you earned it using the infamous Suarez act!
It is very aptly said – ‘Victory is as much a course as its destination!’
Legends are therefore the tale of an inspiring odyssey, of players who have perfected the art of placing one brick at a time which over the course of a career transforms into a breath-taking magnificent monument.
In summation, a victory isn’t always about the glory embraced in attaining a definite goal in life. Sooner or later, life teaches us that the winner is the one who learns to take a perfect step, one at a time. And that while the pages of history are turned, it’s the lingering scent of a victory rather than the name of a legendary perfume itself that shall judge the final measure of any sporting god!