Cricket and Politics: Interlinked? Essay

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Formerly known as the “jewel” of the British colonies, India became influenced by the British in terms of religion, government, technology, but most culturally recognized: cricket. In the modern era, sports and politics are often interlinked with political disputes. Throughout this essay, the influence cricket and politics have on one another will be discussed through: caste systems (Docs 2, 3, 4), rivalries (Docs 1, 6, 10), and religious tension (Docs 5, 7, 8, 9) against the different countries and cricket teams. It didn’t matter if you were an “untouchable” in the caste system or a British soldier, cricket was played by all people of all castes. Shown in doc. 2, Prince Ranjitsinhji of India was invited to play on the British Sussex team. It is often seen that the British have certain standards for a cricket player, but this shows they recognize the young player through his skills, not his background or caste. However, because it was published by the British, this paper could have been used as a source of propaganda. Well quoted in doc. 3, “cricket unites the rulers and ruled”, Cricket was said to be the most “civilizing influences,” and the one that did “least harm,” because rather than making the Indians grief over the fact that they were not an independent country, they gave them cricket: a source of happiness and moral training. Doc. 4 teaches that even the lowest of the caste, can make the upper-caste cricket team. This is very symbolic, due to different castes were never allowed to mingle with one another earlier times. Where there is peace, there will be a few rivalries before. Doc. 1 shows the tension between the British “polo ponies” and the 500 Indian cricket-enthusiasts when an Indian cricket player petitions that the Brits should play polo elsewhere, allowing the natives to play in their spot. Considering the petition was written in 1881, the

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