Mr. Abdul Hafeez Kardar; my dear friends,
I would not like to take much of your time as play is to start soon. Spectators, too, are waiting to see your performance. Nevertheless, I would like to tell you that this is the one game in which I am deeply interested after the game of politics.
Recently, we have concluded, after many years of effort, an agreement on the fundamentals of the constitution. Many of our friends are wondering as to how, in such a short period of time, we were able to resolve issues with which we grappled for so long. The reasons are many but I think there is also a “cricketing “ reason to it and that is that, like cricket, we too have three stumps in the federal constitution – the central subjects, the concurrent subjects and the residuary subjects. In a Federal Government, concurrent subjects are most difficult to run. The concurrent list is like the googly. It looks to be a left leg when it has come from the off stick and the batsman plays it and sees it when it is coming. That is why there is a great deal of similarity between cricket and the great game and art of politics.
Gentlemen, I wish you well. I know you will do well. You will do well to the country be winning the game. I know that if you put in your very best, you will win many matches. But, as cricketers and as sportsmen, I know that you will perform well not only in the field but also outside the field.
It is very important that we give correct impressions when we go abroad. Winning or losing a match really does not matter. When you lose a game, of course, you feel disheartened and when you win, you feel greatly elated. But, in the final analysis, it is the impression that you leave behind of your sportsmanship, of your being able to take both victory and defeat in the proper spirit of the game. This is most important especially in view of some of the recent events that took place in another game. So, you would have to make up for it and I know that you will make up for it. I know you will not lose your head. It is very bad when promising young sportsmen lose their head and think that suddenly they have become great ones, above the ordinary people. Unfortunately, these things do affect us somewhat, but a sportsman who loses his head has often had a very short innings. I don't want to give you examples of our own people. You know how true it is. Take the subcontinent as a whole. Those who have held their head, those who have taken their laurels modestly and have not felt elated over temporary sensations of being glorified and lionized, their innings have been much longer.
You know in undivided India there was Vijay Merchant, who was a modest cricketer. He took his successes modestly. He had a long and distinguished career. Likewise, Lala Amar Nath never allowed his successes to go to his head. Vino Mankad, for sometime, lost his head and had a very bad patch. But, when he came down to earth, he became “Mankad the Magnificent.” So, do not lose your head. Modesty is a good thing for everybody, above all for a sportsman.
Pointing to Mr. A.H. Kardar, the President said, “I know this gentleman for a very long time. We first met in Bombay when he went there to play cricket. He had made a name in Lahore against the Australian servicemen. In those days he used to wear Australian white cap. He has been an outstanding cricketer. I see other cricketers here also, Fazal Mahmood is here. Gul Mohammad is here. They have all had a good career. I hope and pray you will bring great credit to your country.
Thank you very much.