[Binod Pandey, who is associated with Cricket Nepal since its inception, was recently awarded Sports Journalism of Archival Values Award by Nepal South Asian Sports Journalists Association and Nepal Olympic Museum. This is his “thank you” write-up. Cricket Nepal team congratulates content co-ordinator Pandey for the award. –Ed]
For me, speaking on a microphone is as rare as handle the ball out in cricket and goal on corner kick in football. So, I am a bit nervous.
First of all, I thank organizing Nepal South Asian Sports Journalists Association for awarding me. I also thank Nepal Olympic Museum for establishing this award for sports journalism for archival values.
For me, Chhitiz is a double co-incidence. Basu Chhitiz pointed my direction to sports journalism in 1993 by publishing my sports articles in Gatibidhi weekly. He was a cartoonist there and I had seen that it sometimes published sports news on seventh page. My two articles – on Mahabir Cup cricket and SanMiguel Cup U-16 football were published on same page.
The publication of sports articles there paved my way to Ajako Samacharpatra (now Nepal Samacharpatra) daily and now to Nagarik daily.
The other Chhitiz is Chhitiz Arun Shrestha, the chairman of Nepal Olympic Museum. The prize his Museum sponsored is my first ever award.
Many have understood that I am awarded for writing on cricket by collecting statistics. I don’t have a different opinion. But if that is so, I want to thank Cricket.com.np and it’s founder Ujjwal Acharya. The site has made my sports journalism, especially writing articles with statistics, very easy. I am still associated with it as associate editor (content co-ordinator). I always remember that when I failed to give credit to site on my statistics, colleague Ujjwal would say – we survive if site survives.
I have also written archival news for many other sports. Those memorable for me include news about Tejbir Buda, who received an Olympic gold after 88 years, and the Dasrath Stadium tragedy, when more than 70 were killed in stampede.
I couldn’t write on stadium tragedy despite being on my mind for 7 or 8 years. Since I was living in Jawalakhel where I was a neighbors of many who survived the tragedy and of some families who lost relatives in it, I felt like I could write the story as a witness.
It was on 24th anniversary of the incident and I wrote a story with colleague Prakash Timilsina for Nagarik thinking it was 25th anniversary. Once it was published, we found out we wrote it a year earlier. A year later, Nepal Olympic Museum organized a memorial event in front of the gate where many were killedd using the tragedy. It was at 7am and I could not attend as I reach home at 11 or 12 pm from office.
I thank Museum for keeping this award ceremony late afternoon so that I could attend. I got good response for the stories on cricket, Tejbir Buda and Stadium tragedy – and I feel this award is also a good ‘response’ for my write ups.