Mediocrity in sport is yet another aspect of the Nehruvian Stalinist legacy bequeathed to India.
Unlike dictatorial regimes in other Communist countries which placed (and still do) a lot of emphasis on excellence
in sport - the Nehruvian Stalinists did not.
I attribute it to their deracination, lack of national or civilizational pride. National pride just did not figure in the Stalinists' scheme of things. Excellence in sport on any other field was not a priority.
The treatment accorded to Major Dhyanchand, the hockey wizard was downright dishonoourable in contrast to the lionization of the Tendulkars and the Gangulys.
The Indian soccer team qualified for the 1950 World Cup, but did not participate - ostensibly for lack of funds, including allegedly for their SHOES!
It is hard to believe that India did not have money to purchase a dozen pairs of football shoes for the national team participating in the World Cup, yet could order a naval warship half away around the world to the English Channel - for a 21 gun salute to the late Edwina Mountbatten.
This was a singularly unconscionable atrocity against national pride by Chacha Nehru's Congress - and Suresh Kalmadi was not even the Union minister for sports yet!