'Going to Brazil was a dream come true'

'Going to Brazil was a dream come true'

Candid chat

'Going to Brazil was a dream come true'

S udhir R juggles his passion for music and football equally. His love for the sport grew when he was a teenager. Since then, he has been balancing music and football.

The Masters student of Jain University took part in different tournaments, including the recent ‘Neymar Jr’s 5’ world finals, which offered  him and the team a chance to play in Brazil.

In a candid chat with Tini Sara Anien, this right-wing back player talks about the game and his experiences in Brazil.

How did you take an interest in football?

I was playing football since my first PUC and got addicted to it. But beatboxing kicked off faster. Football needed more practice and dedication. Luckily, I got many opportunities to participate in competitions across the city and I gave my 100% to football. I used to practise individually as well as watch others play.

How did you enter the world finals?

I was constantly practising. Slowly, I got seriously involved in the game and played the C division and the B division followed by the A division as a part of the professional leagues held at the football stadium here. This year, I am aiming for the Super division. While I was in college, we took part in this event with around 60 teams and from there got selected to play in Mumbai at the national level. It was when we won there that we realised we were headed to Brazil for the finals.

The experience in Brazil...

It was exhilarating to say the least. Going to Brazil was a dream come true. We played in Santos at Neymar’s own football institute and got a chance to see him too. My team (fellow collegemates) and I lost the match to the Netherlands but it was nothing short of exciting. Seeing Neymar made one realise that a great player like him can also be humble to the core.

Your observations from the game abroad...

Compared to other countries, we are a step below. In terms of physicality and game structure, we have a long way to go. The food is a big part of the training  — we tend to have a lot of spicy food while others have food that is bland yet high on nutrition. Good food and good practice go hand in hand. A good game plan is required for a good game. Teams abroad practise the game that they will play in the future.

Lessons learnt from the game...

We knew only a few strengthening exercises, but we did what we could. We learnt that we need to be stronger. Most teams boast of their own set of professional coaches and experts. At the moment, the only professional coach here is from the Bengaluru Football Club. Sunil Chhetri is a great player but this doesn’t
mean that he alone builds the whole game. As far as teams from other countries are concerned, the whole team gets recognition for a victory.

Has being a musician influenced your game?

When I got interested in music, my inspiration was A R Rahman, but I never wanted to copy him. Similarly, I look up to many football players like Lionel Messi. But I want to be identified for my own football style.

Any advice to aspiring players...

One should put in consistent hard work and dedication into something they love doing. Believe in god and victory will come in search of you.

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