An ode to our sports heroes
Play Write 2018 presented a dynamic platform for bringing to fore the clandestine, yet, inspiring stories of India's daring sporting heroes, writes Vinati Bhargava Mittal.
In a cricket crazy nation, where men's sports are more popularly watched than women's, there are several rising stars in the sports firmament who have brought laurels to the country across different fields. Yet, little is known to the public about them or their game. The first edition of the two-day Play Write, 2018 – India's premier sports literary festival, inaugurated by the three time Olympic Gold Medal winner Balbir Singh Sr, at The Lalit in Chandigarh on March 18, brought together eminent sports personalities who had been the subject of books or movies, written one themselves, sports writers and upcoming sports personstogether on one platform.
It provided the perfect forum for the audience to hear about the spellbinding inspiring stories of sporting heroes – Balbir Singh Dosanj (Balbir Singh Sr.), 93, one of the greatest sportsmen the country has ever produced, whose record for scoring the highest number of goals by an individual in an Olympics men's hockey final still remains unbeaten; the resurgent comeback of former Indian hockey captain Sandeep Singh in 2009 after being fatally injured in an accidental shooting while travelling in Shatabdi in 2006; and former marathoner Fauja Singh, the world's oldest runner, who hung his boots at 101. The sports literature festival also presented an opportunity to learn about the toils, travails and struggles of youngsters which need to be highlighted as these champions in making vie for the top slots internationally.