Did you know that India has a national blind cricket team? Blind cricket, as one may expect, is a version of the sport of cricket adapted for blind and partially sighted players.
Two blind factory workers adopted the existing game of cricket by using a tin can containing rocks and invented blind cricket in Melbourne in 1922. The World Blind Cricket Council (WBCC) has governed and regulated it since 1996.
Coming out in support of this form of the sport, the Master Blaster, Sachin Tendulkar, has called on the BCCI to recognise the Cricket Association for the Blind in India (CABI) and bring its players under the Board’s pension scheme.
Tendulkar wrote to the Committee of Administrator’s (CoA) chairman Vinod Rai, requesting him to consider recognition for CABI, weeks after the team won the Blind World Cup 2018, beating Pakistan by two wickets in the final on January 20, as reported by The Hindu.
“The team has overcome many hurdles and single-mindedly focussed on getting laurels for our country. Their victory is inspirational and reminds us of the limitless power of the human mind. I am given to understand that the BCCI has lent its support to these players in the past and considering a similar initiative this time too,” as reported by DNA.
“The recognition by BCCI will go a long way in ushering a new era in Indian sports for the physically challenged where every athlete feels secure and celebrated, not struggling and eventually forgotten. Needless to add, it will also serve as a motivation for many others to take up sports passionately. I keenly look forward to your prompt action,” Tendulkar said, as reported by The Quint.
It was way back in December 1990 that nearly 400 blind cricketers came together from across the country to embark on a cricketing journey which many felt was absurd and preposterous.
Various reporters who were covering the inaugural match called it outrageous.
However, blind cricket is just as intense, and players display as much energy, as any regular game of cricket. For more on India’s Blind Cricket team, read our article here.