हिन्दीಕನ್ನಡമലയാളംதமிழ்తెలుగు

We've to play attractive brand to keep sponsors alive

Published: Thursday, March 29, 2001, 18:23 [IST]
 
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Bangalore: Anjum Chopra, the vice-captain of the Indian team to the women's World Cup at New Zealand last year, had spoken at length to Thatscricket.com on Indian women's cricket. The second and concluding part of the series gives more insight into her thoughts on the status of women's cricket in India.

"You see it is a give and take relationship. If we play an attractive brand of cricket then things will begin to fall into place. If we give the sponsors a good tournament they are going to come back," Chopra said with regard to making women's cricket more attractive in the Indian context.

Given the elaborate coverage in both the print and Internet media, the performance of women's cricket in India stands all the more in poor light. And if the association does not conduct itself properly, the media focus naturally shifts… your comments?

I guess we have to play more tournaments then things will definitely look up. I suppose the association has realised this and is now planning to conduct at least one international fixture in a year and also holding domestic tournaments on regular basis.

Yeah there was a lull of late, but after the England series we have been having regular camps.

This is precisely what I intend, apart from the 25 or 30 players that are kept busy the rest of the country goes to sleep for 10 to 12 months. Don't you think that this is cutting into the growth and future of the game? You cannot expect the girls to practice for just two tournaments a year; I am talking at the grass root level?

I guess, that has got to do with sponsorship because until and unless you have got enough sponsorship you cannot go ahead with tournaments and till the time you conduct tournaments you don't have girls coming in. It's all a circle you see.

Don't you think that irrespective of the fact that international matches are taking place, like in men's cricket, the domestic season should go on? At least a few tournaments so that we are not left with all the tournaments being packed in a month or so?

It again is all about sponsorship and money. Before we used to have a lot of invitation tournaments but now they have dried up. I feel everybody has to contribute equally to bring this game up. The officials will have to play their part and so also the players. I don't think one person can do wonders.

Unless the officials do their part the game is not going to come up, unless the players do their part the game is not going to come up either and not to forget the media. It requires the media too to keep us in the glory.

I have heard people speak, generally, that it is only men's cricket that hogs the limelight and therefore sponsors spend most of their ad money (sponsorship) for men's cricket. They are just not forthcoming, in other words, a step motherly treatment is being meted out. Don't you think that this criticism is not entirely true?

You see it is a give and take relationship. If we play an attractive brand of cricket then things will begin to fall into place. If we give the sponsors a good tournament they are going to come back.

It is easy to say that this company will sponsor and that company will, but then again the reputation of the event that they are sponsoring counts.

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