Racing towards the goal

Racing towards the goal

In action

Racing towards the goal

Every champion was once a contender who refused to give up. Bengaluru, with its good weather for sports training, has encouraged many youngsters to excel in sports. Not only are people thrilled watching these games, but they also enjoy practising them.

The city is full of young promising athletes. Utthami Raju, a student of Mount Carmel College, discovered that running was her calling, in high school, where she used to excel in road races. Her greatest challenge came when she had a bad knee injury in the 8th standard, the effects of which are still prevalent. Nevertheless, this hasn’t stopped her from engaging in her passion. Her greatest achievement that she is proud of is being able to run in the TCS World 10k  in Bengaluru for 2 consecutive years winning the fifth place in her given age category.

“My dad is 56 years old and he just started running the half marathon. He is my inspiration,” says Utthami. She believes that physical exercise and staying hydrated is essential for athletes.

Challenges vary from person to person. 18-year-old David Biju, from Christ University, found it hard to balance academics with sports as it demanded the sacrifice of his study time. Another difficulty was travelling to the stadium for practice everyday as he lived quite far. Despite a back spasm, the athlete was able to secure the third place in a 100 metre race at the Karnataka State Meet. “Honestly, I’m a big foodie, so I don’t stick to a proper diet, but I try my best to eat healthy food,’’ says David, who uses every defeat to work towards success. He advises, “Always do what you love and let no one stop you from reaching your goals.”

It’s hard to beat a person who never gives up. Sumith Kethan Ravi Kumar, 21, from New Horizon College, takes part in hockey, football, cricket and athletics. His inspiration to be the best was driven by his love for sports. He enjoys playing every sport he possibly can. “I’d watch people play and couldn’t help but join in and when I actually took interest, I excelled,” says Sumith.

He has had too many injuries and even found it difficult to balance sports with studies. However, when he became the fastest athlete in the 7th grade, it gave a boost to his confidence. Being a former member of the JFHA Hockey Team and a current member of the GermainKnight Hockey Academy, Sumith can now run 100 meters in 10 seconds.

“I look up to the living legends, Usain Bolt and Virat Kohli,” he says. When it comes to Sumith’s diet, he eats healthy as he is generally not fond of junk food, though Oreo biscuits are an exception! He says he is ready for all the challenges that come his way at any point in life as he believes in never giving up.

Initiative, enthusiasm and undying passion is what it takes to win. When Nyrika Bose was young, she asked her mother why there were only girls in the football team to which her mother replied, “If boys can, so can girls. Why don’t you try and decide for yourself?” In the 8th grade, she joined a club and her passion has been growing ever since.

She has had many injuries that have taken time to heal but all they did was leave her stronger and more determined. Her proudest moment was being able to build a women’s football team in junior college which went on to be the runners-up at a college fest, without any coach. “Another major achievement was being a part of my Christ University team that won a tournament after 7 years and then going on to win continuously,” says the footballer.

      She does not believe in a strict diet but says that one must consume their proteins and carbohydrates in proportion along with having plenty of water and eating good breakfasts. According to her coach, “there are no girls and boys in football, only players!”

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