Critics steal the show when our sports teams lose matches or tournaments. Within hours of defeat our losing teams are criticized right or wrong. Men and women, young and old, media and management, all unleash blind and blatant criticism against our sportsmen. But the nuances of sports are ignored when it comes to public celebrations on wins at home and abroad. Victories abroad earn special recognition indeed. The last few days have been commendable for Pakistan in the sense that we have had two welcome wins. First, Pakistan cricket team had the better of the favorites India in the tri-series in Bangladesh. Then, Pakistan hockey team won a morale-boosting four nation Sentanta Hockey Tournament in Dublin. Winning a competitive hockey tournament at the threshold of Beijing Olympics 2008 and breaking the drought of consecutive losses against India in cricket are positive landmarks in national sports. Except for the cash awards declared for the cricket winners and the media acknowledgement for the triumph in hockey, there is not much hoopla. Our cranky critics, who rip apart our teams' losing performances, seem to have no welcoming comments on the twin wins. Gone are the days when victories were celebrated with firecrackers and traditional dances and commemorated with at least patriotic songs and distribution of sweets. Our sports heroes are also human beings and need appreciation to excel. -PARVEZ JAMIL, Karachi, via e-mail, June 17.