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Where do you go once you go to the moon?

Back in 1969, the moon landing gave humanity of its most subliminal moments. Though the vision of man’s first step on the moon has been ingrained in the minds of those who weren’t even around to witness it, not many cameras covered the aftermath. On their return to earth, the astronauts realised that their lives had changed dramatically. Unimaginable, but some of them actually suffered psychological problems and battled depression. The reasons were many but a plausible reason is – where do you go once you go the moon?

One wonders if the Indian team finds itself in the position that the astronauts found themselves in.

Though experts point out to various factors for the team’s failure, a fan doesn’t read much into them. A fan only shares the pain but not the dressing room. Every consecutive defeat, where the margin of defeat is only increasing shows a certain sense of listlessness in the team. Like they turned up and expected the wind to blow in their favour.

Much was spoken about of a committee being set up after India’s very very forgettable tour of England. Many voices were raised and much was promised. As Rahul Dravid stated in his Bradman oration, the ODI series that followed (and won) was without context. Funnily enough, the board didn’t see it that way. It became something to gloat about. A primary fault lies in a board that ensures that its balance sheet is in place but two hoots and a flying fuck about a balanced team. It is a board that fights vociferously for its autonomy but not its accountability.

On April 2, 2011, the country’s gross happiness index which is over dependent on the Indian team’s performance, increased as one may presume, considerably. Sadly, it’s gone downhill ever since. Before the team lifted the cup and gave an entire generation a chance to witness history, pride was relegated to watching youtube videos of the improbable 1983 win. A world cup at home is motivation enough and though albeit a tad unconvincing at times, their campaign gave us one of 2011's most enduring moments. The victory was India’s moon landing. Their no. 1 ranking reinforced the belief that their time had come. Sadly, they hadn't thought of where to go next.

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There are only two paths once supremacy is ascertained. You either reinforce it for years as West Indies and Australia did, or you throw it all away which we have done with great aplomb. Where the team had a chance to go from strength to strength, they have to expend all their energy to going back to where they were a year ago. Whatever the decisions, whatever the promises, the current situation has robbed Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman of a peaceful retirement, something unworthy of their stature. 

And the words from Guns ‘n’ Roses iconic anthem, sweet child ‘o’ mine, ring in all our ears - where do we go now, where do we go now, where do we go?


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