Consistent Champ or Comeback Kid?

ootprHell hath no fury like a comeback victory!Be as politically correct as you can, but a victory against all odds , is the sweetest of them all. History loves the underdogs, the once champions, the forgotten heroes and the rookies, who came back from nowhere. The celebrations are the biggest when these individuals or teams turn the tide. It’s like the world plays the victim  card and feels redeemed! This is their take-that moment. Yet the same champions when they win consistently over time, are the ones to beat. And again the world goes rooting the for the proverbial prodigal one. Why is that?

The greatest comebacks in the history of sporting encounters  have one common vein running through their blood : resilience.  Ironically, these are exactly the character traits that makes champions last the distance. Why then is the world feeling so much for the comeback kids? Why not for the consistent champion? Till Tom Brady was winning consistently, there was no such furore, till Roger Federer was decimating opponents there were no magical eulogies ,till Sachin Tendulkar was nailing it innings after innings people were all happy, but they became jubilant when these champions lost and came back to prove a point.

Is it because it is more difficult to make a comeback ? But top athletes around the world who are at the peak of their game, will tell you, that maintaining consistency is tougher, much less glamorous and takes a lot of spirit to keep going. It begs the question :why do we love heroics over consistency? Adrenalin? Glory ? Acknowledgement?  Or is it simply a need for approval. More so from the detractors. It’s not enough that you win, the satisfaction of seeing the opponent lose is more fulfilling. Some call it a killer instinct and some downright foolishness or poor attitude.

In a highly competitive environment, where victories are tough, no mercies if you lose, the attainment of victory or the pursuit of victory becomes more dogged. People start looking for only and only the end result forgetting to enjoy the process. People who enjoy their game, play the most fearless. But who’s to take a chance? That being said, then why shy away from expressing your emotions? Why the need to be politically correct, and be gracious and humble? This dichotomy is growing  in our society like never before. You are put under an extreme duress and expected to remain calm. Without a vent, many people implode. Again, history is replete with instances of great sports teams or players losing their way into oblivion. So when the underdog comes back and wins, the expressions get a license to explode.

So spare a thought for the consistent champion, who wins by design, and not by heroics, who wins by discipline and not maverick histrionics. The player you want to beat, the benchmark you want to better, the adversary which keeps you awake, must be doing something great. Cheer for them too!

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