'I've always wanted to make our country proud'

Sporting spirit

'I've always wanted to make our country proud'

Bengaluru-based futsal player Jonathan Piers is gearing up for the second edition of Premier Futsal that will take place in July.  The young lad calls it an amazing sport which has great potential to grow in the country. Along with his team, Jonathan is now  focussing on putting his best foot forward in the tournament.

In a chat with Anushree Agarwal, he talks about his tryst with the game, how it is different from others and what keeps him going.

Tell us about your tryst with futsal.

I’ve been playing football for the last four years because that’s what we’ve been exposed to. I started off with five-aside football, which is the closest to futsal. Then Premiere Futsal came along around last year and that’s when I started playing the game properly.

How different is futsal from football?

In futsal, there are a lesser number of people on the pitch and it’s a smaller area but the ball is also completely different; it’s like a combination of football and basketball. It’s more challenging and quicker. The match might be of a shorter duration but it still requires as much energy as any of these games.

How’s your experience with ‘Bangalore 5’s’ been?

I became a part of the team last year. Before that, we had the launchpad and the whole selection process to be a part of ‘Bangalore 5’. Even before I was a part of the team, we were treated really well and they took good care of us. The experience in Chennai, where we attended a boot camp, was also wonderful.

Are you excited for the second edition?

I am very excited. There are six teams from different cities and I hope my team does really well.

How’s the training going?

Everything has been with the team and there’s no individual work. We are focussing on doing our best.

What keeps you going?

I’ve been playing sports like cricket, football and futsal. In every sport, I’ve always wanted to be a part of the national team and make our country proud. That aim is what keeps me motivated.

What do you feel about the future of futsal in India?

I hope it grows because it’s an amazing sport; it’s entertaining and fun to be a part of it, especially with Premier Futsal. They are doing a lot of good for the sport. In a couple of years, I think it’s going to be as big as cricket and football.

An advice to young sportspersons...

Don’t give up. There are times when you’ll feel like you can’t do it, your time is over or you’ve lost the opportunity but please remember when one door closes, another one opens. So just keep looking for opportunities and grab them.

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