Lose the battle, win the war

IPL 2018 has ended with Shane Watson who was the hero of the inaugural edition in 2008 playing a vital role in the Rajasthan Royals team’s winning the trophy, becoming the hero again after a decade, this time for Chennai Super Kings whose fairytale like comeback to the tournament after a gap of two years bore the coveted fruit of winning the trophy again. Last time they had won it in 2011.

CSK has played seven finals in their nine appearances in this tournament and not even once they have failed to make it to the knockouts / play-offs. What’s the secret of their stupendous success ? Let’s examine.

Way back in 2012, before the IPL final when CSK was going to face Kolkata Knight Riders, in the Extra Innings programme related to this tournament, when asked who would win the final, former Indian Cricketer – Ajay Jadeja denied to reply but said that if ten people were asked this question, nine would answer in favour of Chennai Super Kings. He was right. Why ? Because Chennai Super Kings have built a reputation of not only performing consistently but coming great when the occasion is great. Mahendra Singh Dhoni has proved the Shakespearean quote time and again – cometh the hour, cometh the man. He knows that losing certain matches in-between does not matter if the really important knock-out matches as well as the trophy-awarding final is won. Winning every time does not matter, winning in the significant dual matters.

In the rules related to the central government employees, it is mentioned in the context of promotions that for getting entitled for promotion, the employee has to demonstrate a consistently high level of performance throughout the year instead of occasional flare-ups. But the vice-versa only is true in the practice because who shows his quality in certain significant issues only is able to steal the show and the reap the tangible benefits like bonus and promotion and not the one who consistently performs throughout the year but the things done by him are considered as routine by those empowered to distribute the benefits.

When the war is still on, it’s no use excessively celebrating the winning of a particular battle or excessively mourning the losing of an odd one. Finally, losing battles doesn’t matter if the war is won in the end and winning battles doesn’t matter if the war is lost in the end. The owner of Kolkata Knight Riders – Shah Rukh Khan says in his famous dialogue (from the movie – Baazigar) – Haar Kar Jeetne Waale Ko Baazigar Kehte Hain (one who wins by losing is termed as Baazigar). M.S. Dhoni has transformed himself into a Baazigar who lose matches in between and allows the people to criticize him and when his detractors have written him off, he bounces back in style when the stakes are high and the occasion is really significant. He knows that the mental strength and holding your nerves in the crucial moments is the key to success. You may lose not because of the difficult situation but because of your panicking. He doesn’t panic. And, therefore, he and his men are able to snatch win out of the jaws of defeat time and again.

Barring the exception of Adam Gilchrist, the other captains and their teams have not been able to demonstrate this quality on a consistent basis. I remember, in the IPL of 2010, Deccan Chargers, the team led by Adam Gilchrist was on the brink of bowing out of IPL when they had lost six out of nine played matches and one more loss would have shut the door on them. However under the captaincy of Gilly, Deccan Chargers won all of their remaining group matches (five in a row) and stormed into the semi-finals in style. Hence, getting demoralized in adversity is as bad as allowing certain successes to enter your head is. That’s why King’s XI Punjab won certain battles in the beginning of the tournament but ultimately lost the war.

Why does the lady-luck smile at CSK (or their skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni) so often ? The answer is simple – fortune favours the brave. And the CSK players are bravehearts, taking everything in their stride and elevating their level of performance to the dizzy heights when the occasion is big and winning matters the most. The thing that Mahendra Singh Dhoni indirectly teaches not only to the Cricket teams but to all in general, is that the first laugh is less important, the last laugh is more (and in fact, the most) important. Hence be mentally strong and ignore whatever the world says about you to enjoy the last laugh when the curtains are down.

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About Jitendra Mathur

A Chartered Accountant with literary passion and a fondness for fine arts
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6 Responses to Lose the battle, win the war

  1. Tidbits says:

    luck favors the brave ! 🙂

  2. yogensarswat says:

    Chennai deserved it as they have enthusiasm .

  3. Pingback: Barbaadiyon Ka Jashn Manaata Chala Gaya … | jmathur

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