Media has created heroes in sports, says Gavaskar

The cricket legend said youngsters should be able to take up the sports they love playing.

Gavaskar: "Unless sports is a good career option, not many youngsters will be drawn to it beyond their teenage years."   -  The Hindu

Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar is happy with the way youngsters are making their presence felt in Indian sports, but feels it is important to create a sports culture with better infrastructure and accountability at levels – from the administrators to the players.

This will ensure greater participation from the younger generations, he said. “Most crucially, unless sports is a good career option, not many youngsters will be drawn to it beyond their teenage years.”

The cricket legend said youngsters should be able to take up the sports they love playing, and “what has helped is the media – both electronic and print – which has created heroes and role models in various sports for youngsters to emulate and follow.”

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Gavaskar is chairman of the five-member jury for the Sportstar Aces Awards that includes former India hockey captain M. M. Somaya, Hindu Group chairman N. Ram and Olympians Anju Bobby George and Anjali Bhagwat.

“Firstly, it was a tremendous honour to be asked to chair the jury with such eminent sporting personalities like Anju Bobby George, Somaya, Anjali, and of course the huge sports lover with a fund of knowledge of all sports, Mr N. Ram,” Gavaskar said, adding: “There was the Sportstar team led by (editor) Ayon (Sengupta) and K. C. Vijaya Kumar (sports editor, The Hindu), whose inputs were invaluable. That made the jury’s task easier.”

The Sportstar Aces Awards will be held in Mumbai on February 14.