March 4, 2009

Shootout in Lahore

United we stand

Judhajit
Security guards crowd round the Sri Lankan team's bullet-ridden bus, Lahore, March 3, 2009
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The terror attacks in Lahore carried deeper ramifications for the game with some of cricket’s superstars targeted and wounded. Rob Houwing in Sport24.com calls on the game’s community to stand together and not be driven apart by evil and bloodshed

Potential for polarisation and some resentment exists, even if the game being split along the “First v Third World” lines of old is unlikely, and to be guarded against at all costs. The world governing body, the ICC, is not always renowned for its stealth, diplomatic nous or pro-activity. This a good time for it to display decisive leadership -- there may be no choice. It is confronted by a delicate and deeply complex issue, because security for the game’s participants and enthusiasts is one of those “no middle ground” necessities.

Neil Johnson, understandably is shocked at the events in Pakistan, a country which he has fond memories of during Zimbabwe's tour in 1999. He presents a few snippets from that visit in his column in the Natal Witness.

The public in Pakistan are mad about cricket, its very much part of daily life there. Even in the dusty back streets of Lahore you would be sure to find youngsters decked out in “whites” and dusty cricket jerseys, bowling at makeshift stumps. As visitors we were treated like celebrities. All the average man in the street wanted to do was to welcome us to his country and cheer the bus as it moved on.

Paul Holden in his blog Sideline Slogger believes cricket is sullied and has become an unwitting and unwilling poster child for the renaissance of international sporting terrorism.

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