Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Do not give in to terrorism, tour India: Former star players

Legendary cricketers like Steve Waugh and Ian Botham on Wednesday adjured the athletes worldwide to not let terrorism affect sport anywhere in the world including India, which is set to host extremely popular IPL and Commonwealth Games later this year.

Waugh said the terror attack on Sri Lakan cricket team in Pakistan last year has changed the safety perception of the players but was of the view that players should not surrender to terrorism by skipping sport events.

"Sportspersons are more concerned now a days. Earlier they used to feel they are safe but in the last couple of years that perception have changed because of the way the Sri Lankan players were attacked in Pakistan. "The entire landscape has changed but as sportspersons, we shouldn't give in to the terrorism and must travel to play the game," said the two-time World Cup winning captain.

Ian Botham, former England all-rounder, also echoed similar views at a discussion on cricket as a part of the Laureus Sport Awards at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi.

"We got to take a stand. We have so many tournaments lined up. In India we have IPL, Commonwealth Games. In South Africa we have the Soccer World Cup then there is the world cup Twenty20 in the West Indies and the 50-50 World Cup in the sub-continent and Olympics in London in 2012.

"We just can't allow one phone call before the events to disrupt the tournaments. We shouldn't surrender to terrorism. My suggestions will be to go and enjoy the game," Botham said.

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