Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Winning but at what cost?

"It doesn't matter if you win or lose, but how you played the game."

These days I find myself exhausted, not only physically but mentally as well.  The boys extra-murals which consist of two sports, swimming and cricket, keep us on our toes.  I discovered long ago with swimming not to even bother with school swimming - so we go to private coaching.   I am starting to wonder about school cricket as well but the boys love it.  I find myself hating it and it all boils down to something I heard often while I was at school - "It doesn't matter if you win or lose, but how you played the game".  Well, things have certainly changed and it would appear winning at all costs is the story of the day.  I am at the point of throwing in the towel, short of a miracle, I'm not sure in what direction to go.

Where has sportsmanship and being a team player gone?  When did it all become about an individual?  I find the schools/coaches/parent have their little stars and as for the rest of you - SCREW YOU!!  Without private coaching - you're screwed.  Your star will never be considered 'star' enough.  Yeah, I'm feeling cranky and tired.   Finding extra coaching for the boys has proven to be nearly 'Mission Impossible' (finding private swimming lessons has been far easier, much less competitive and less expensive) - short of going down on my knees begging, actually I might have and harassing our local coaches I might have achieved the impossible.   But, the weather is messing us about - storms messing with our private coaching sessions and me having to deal with heart broken kids when they are not selected to play - we're talking 'B' team here people.  All I want is for my boys to know enough and be able to at least make the 'B' team - maybe we need to aim higher to be taken more seriously - who knows.  Clearly my telling the coaches is that all I want for the boys is the ability to play and play well, not necessarily league/A team/Provincial level is falling on dumbfounded ears.

And I get even more mad when a coach/teacher can turn around and tell a bunch of kids that he is picking winners to play in a match and he wants to win a few games.  So the kids not selected feel like losers.  I am surprised I did not go ballistic when I found this out.

My youngest star - at least in my eyes

I had another mother boast proudly how her son plays for the U9's and U10's - well what about the kids who turn up to practice religiously and get left out.  I made my feelings known on that one.  The response I got - the school wants to win.  

I'm not entirely sure about the world our kids are growing up in.  Why did it seem easier when we were at school?  There was none of this Private Coaching and it costing you an arm and a leg.  Adults showed genuine interest and if a kid was keen he/she was taught the skills to play the game.  Now, as parents you're lucky if it costs you less than R400 per child per 1 hour lesson.

Josh : is having more luck than his older brother and is getting some match time.
Brad :  struggling on the side lines and hanging in there


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