Indian wheelchair cricket team beat Pakistan to bring home trophy
India's wheelchair cricket team put up a spirited performance against Pakistan to win the recent bilateral series in Dubai.
This victory was made even sweeter by the fact that it was so decisive. India beat Pakistan, 3-0, and the players showed their skills in various departments like batting, bowling and fielding.
The 21-member Indian team with 14 players and coaches left for Dubai on 17 September. Team members met up in New Delhi for a one day training session together before flying to Dubai. The players were selected by the Wheelchair Cricket India (WCI).
Most of us knew each other since we have represented our states in matches. Until then, they were our opponents. But this time we played together for India. It was a great experience. - Shivaprasad S, Wheelchair cricketer
The event was held thanks to the support of sponsors as there was none forthcoming from the state governments and the Centre or the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI).
The players said they were overwhelmed by the love and support they received in Dubai. The three-day event had quite a number of Indian fans hooked."We received so much love at Dubai", said Shivaprasad. "At the airport, Indians were shouting slogans and supporting us. But once we reached India, there was no warm welcome. Usually, when our cricket players come back after winning a match abroad, we shower them with so much love. I wonder why wheelchair cricket has to be sidelined. We take equal efforts".
Wheelchair cricket was first founded in Pakistan and arrived in India a few years back. However, the popularity has clearly caught on and with some official support, could go places.