It was way back in 1992. A semi-final match between South Africa
and England in the Cricket World Cup 1992 was going on. Pointing
at the television, my father said to me, "Look at that fielder,
when the ball is with him nobody dares run." I was barely nine
years old and I watched, filled with awe. Later, I found out that
the player's name was Jonty Rhodes. From then on, he became my cricket
Though I began
admiring him for his acrobatic fielding, year after year as I grew
up I saw and understood what a great person Jonty was. It was not
just his unbelievable fielding or his wonderful batting that made
him my hero. What I saw in him was the living example of honesty,
unselfishness and team spirit, the example of true sportsmanship
In a society
where your childhood role models fade as you grow up, my hero stood
like a giant as I tried to gather all his beautiful qualities to
Jonty may not
hold the record of the player who has the most number of catches
for South Africa. But the ones he caught were never meant to be
catches at all. He simply plucked them from nowhere. His batting
statistics never reveal those 30-40 odd runs which were scored from
15-25 balls that saved many matches. His brilliant running between
wickets that kept the scoreboard moving and the magnificent run-outs
that sent many star batsmen back to the dressing rooms will forever
Most of all,
among "Mr. Know Alls" and players who wanted to win at
any cost, his great spirit of sportsmanship and the humble heart
that never accepted the deserving title of "World's Best Fielder"
will always hold a very special place in the history of cricket.
be able to fill your space. But a hero never retires.
May God bless you and keep you close to His heart guiding your steps
for the rest of your life.
- C. Priyangwada Perera
our children a chance
years, especially the primary and junior levels are the most important
in any child's life. They are the formative years when children
do not feel inhibited to try out things. It is during this period
that they discover their special talents by testing their aptitude
for singing, dancing, speech, etc. If encouraged in the right way,
they can grow up to be confident children, excel in whatever they
try their hand at and contribute in a major way to society. For
them to do so, all they require is a chance.
deny children this chance. They keep selecting the same talented
ones who very often take private lessons from them after school
hours. The fair, pretty ones, children of foreigners and the rich
and influential are most often given priority. Do the teachers select
them in the hope of receiving some kind of reward? What about all
the others who desperately need the opportunity, those who love
to sing or dance and are waiting to be asked?
- Concerned parent