Mumbai: NBA star Chris Bosh is confident that basketball will catch up with other sports in India in popularity but conceded that cricket will remain number one in fan following just like American football is in his home country. (Agencies)
"I don't think it (basketball) will be the most popular sport (in India). Even in America, it is not the most popular sport. American football will always be the king. But that does not mean a lot of people won't like it,” Bosh said in an interaction during his maiden visit to the country to promote basketball.
"I think cricket will always be the national sport but it is always great to love another sport and other people to see what else is out there," Bosh added.
Bosh is also optimistic that an Indian player would make it to NBA ranks in the near future though he is yet to see firsthand the potential of the hoopsters in this country.
"I have heard about different guys in college who have the ability to develop their talent. Given the right situation, it is not going to be long,” said the NBA star.
"I am sure it will be very exciting. Once an Indian player makes it to NBA, kids will watch that and they will know even they can do it," said the American star who has been part of the two-time NBA championship-winning side Miami Heat.
"I think the work we are doing here will go a long way. There are other ways through which you can get people's interest. With the development of technology and social media, the people of India can see what a great game it is. People can see an NBA game. (They will) play if they like it or still remain a fan," he said.
As founder of the 'Chris Bosh Foundation' for sports, he will collaborate with NBA to be one of the spokespersons of the game and try to develop the sport in India.
"Hopefully, one day I will be able come back and be one of the spokespersons for basketball here. This is is a once in a lifetime experience. As I grow as a person, I have the ability or have the chance to come back, if I do, I will try and grow the game," he said.
Mumbai: NBA star Chris Bosh is confident that basketball will catch up with other sports in India in popularity but conceded that cricket will remain number one in fan following just like American football is in his home country.