“Your biggest opponent is not the other guy, it’s human nature” said Bobby Knight. Sports all around the world has seen some of the greatest victories, deafening loses and scintillating performances. On the flip side, it has also witnessed some of the most irrational fights, craziest dramas and break ups. Sports is said to be like a coin. It has two sides, the good and the bad and is a complete package.
It is one thing to see the rivalry in a match, but it is totally different for internal fights and bad vibes to be seen between players or within the team. While the former helps the team to give its best, the latter results in the players losing concentration, ultimately leading to fall in performance of the players or the team in total.
The Paes-Bhupathi saga:
Sports feuds are both interesting and disturbing in their own way. One of the most scandalous sporting fights that saw the split of one of world’s best tennis pairs is the one between Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi. This decision which came in 2001 sent shock waves across the country. Dominance in doubles tennis was a given had they continued to play as a team for the nation. They topped the ATP doubles ranking in 1999 and made both players and fans jealous by showing true friendship and camaraderie both on and off field before the unfortunate break in their relationship. The same pair which won two grand slams in 1999 (French Open and Wimbledon) placed a fight over the game that they love. Their performance, though was reasonable with other partners like Radek Stephanek and Lucas Dlouhy, their dominance in world tennis which lasted for 6 years came to an end.
The 1980s Indian cricket diary:
While tennis saw some major controversy and split up in the late 1990s, the Gavaskar- Kapil Dev- Bedi difference of opinion dominated Indian cricket in the 1980s. Though nothing was out in the open, there was a clear divide and friction between the three aforementioned players in the Indian team. While a few Mumbai players treated Sunil Gavaskar with great reverence, the other players from the Indian team were unable to understand and appreciate his techniques used though he was a genius at it. This was the reason he was never able to attain that amount of love and devotion from both the players in the team and the general public as that of Sachin Tendulkar and Kapil Dev. “I always thought there were a lot of issues within the team. But in the end they were able to put it all behind them and work it our,” said Bhuvana Kumar, a devoted cricket fan of the 1980s.