Most people like sports. Some others are in love with sports. They consider their affiliations to teams as intimate as family ties. They wouldn’t mind spending money on team paraphernalia even if their rent is almost up and they don’t earn that much. I admire the energy of the players and the spectators, the style of play, the beauty the pitch, the cheers and jeers of the crowd.
I’m not a loyal follower of sports but I am fascinated by the NBA and the Champions League (I like to follow the best). It doesn’t only highlight the talent of the star players but also give meaning to the why it is said team spirit is important. Not everyone gets to shine but when the trophy is won, all team players rejoice because everyone played a role. When they lose a match, everyone suffers the humiliation.
As much as we all admire the outstanding athletes like Messi, Ronaldo, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and some others, we can’t dispute the fact that the team helps them become who they are. However things turn out on the pitch, they are all in it together.
I can’t tell for a fact but I’m sure the last place every player wants to be during a match is on the bench. Every athlete wants to be part of the action. The more you are seen on the pitch, the more people appreciate your talent and you get to be counted among the ‘big boys.’ Warming the bench is time wasting, talent fading. You become the ‘escort’ not a real player. You get paid to wear the jersey and chew gum as you look on with folded arms. Where’s the fun in that?
Everyone goes to the pitch with the aim to win. Without such a goal, you’ve already lost the game before it even starts.
To lose a match doesn’t necessarily dim the lights on the star player. Everyone understands that sometimes, the odds are against you and winning a particular game is just not possible no matter how hard you try. But that doesn’t stop critics from broadcasting their view that you might be losing your form and start comparing you with other key players from other teams.
For some others, as long as his team wins, it doesn’t matter if he was part of the action or he rode the bench. The glory is for the whole team.
Personally, the fact that I’ve been signed to be a team player means having the opportunity to be called onto the pitch should be my prayer. Whether we win or lose, I should go down in history as being a ‘part’ of the match. Unless rendered incapacitated due to an injury, the bench would be the last place I want to find myself even if my team wins.
What matters more to you, to be the star player and yet lose the match or be on reserve and win? Your thoughts are warmly welcome.
Josephine Amoako © 2016