Striking a goal

Striking a goal

Achiever

Striking a goal

Humble : Arjun Halappa

Aiding the Indian Hockey team in bagging a silver medal at the CWG was our very own ‘namma Bengaluru boy’ Ashwin Halappa, a midfielder in the team. Working as an officer in Air India, he comes from humble beginnings; his is a story of immense perseverance and passion.

“I started playing hockey in school and was part of the Indian High School team. School was the platform that made me who I am. Extracurricular activities are very
important at the school-level and encouragement for sports is essential from very early on,” he said.

Talking about the Commonwealth Games, he said, “Beating England at the games was the greatest feeling ever.” He attributes their loss in the finals to the lapse in
concentration after the first 15 minutes.

“The only difference between a good team and a great team is that every opportunity to score a goal is made use of by a great team. We missed out on quite a few of those opportunities at every stage in the tournament, more so in the finals.”

The next big event which he is looking forward to is the Asian Games. “Our biggest challenge would be getting into the semi-finals,” he said.  On days, when he is not playing hockey or flying airplanes, Arjun loves to spend time with his family.
“I usually catch a movie with them, go to an odd mall, and basically make up for the lost time,” he added.

Does he think hockey is finally garnering some support? He optimistically replied that the government support for the sport has definitely increased manifolds. “In the seven to eight years that I have been playing hockey, this is the first time we have been given cash awards by the government. But a lot still needs to be done at the school level to
encourage the sport. You need world class players.

To catch them young, encourage hockey in schools,” he added. His dream for Indian hockey is that it becomes the best team in the world by 2012 or 2014. “I just hope we are the best by that time,” he said.

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