Former Indian football captain Renedy Singh has paid tributes to journalists on the occasion of World Sports Journalists Day on July 2.
Renedy, who has played for Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan and East Bengal for more than 12 years, said that he has always been motivated by the sports journalists of the city.
“It has been a great experience to play with the Kolkata clubs. There is so much enthusiasm. I was so overwhelmed by the sports journalists there (Kolkata). Leave aside the match days, even during the training days, there will be around 15 cameras on the ground with an equal number of journalists. You are being monitored every now and then. Many would say, it is pressure but then it is for the good only. It can bring out the best in you,” Renedy told The News Mill.
Renedy said that he did not see this kind of sports journalism, especially following football, in any other places. He started to play for Mohun Bagan in 1996 and later joined their arch rival East Bengal.
He also believed that sports journalism has helped the games to grow.
“Sports journalism is so important to educate the people about the sport and its related issues. Now, with the emergence of digital media and social media, things have changed. But earlier, it used to be the newspapers and journalists. We used to wait eagerly for the next morning to read the match reports and see the photos published. It was a different kind of feeling altogether,” said the 41-year-old Manipuri player.
Renedy also has a good number of friends from the journalists’ fraternity.
“It’s always important to know what went wrong and I should be open to criticism. Only then I will be able to grow as a player or coach. I have a good number of friends who are journalists and I want them to do their job professionally. I will not mind if they would bash me for poor performance. That’s professionalism,” reckoned Renedy who has also played for Shillong Lajong and Kerala Blasters in the later part of his career.
World Sports Journalists Day is celebrated on July 2, to mark the services of sports journalists for the promotion of sports. This day has been earmarked as the official day of celebration because of its significance as the date when the International Sports Press Association was established at the 1924 Paris Olympics.