Mas­ter striker

YU­VRAJ WALMIKI, 21, Hockey player

India Today - - SIMPLY MUMBAI -

On Septem­ber 11 this year at the Asian Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy held in China, the In­dian hockey team found a new cham­pion—yu­vraj Walmiki. It was his goal against Pak­istan in the fi­nal phase of the match that won In­dia the Asian Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy. He has been play­ing pro­fes­sional hockey since 2003 rep­re­sent­ing the city-based club, Bom­bay Repub­li­can. In 2005, he signed a con­tract for Bank of In­dia and played in lo­cal tour­na­ments. His big break came in 2007 when he was just 17 years old, and was of­fered a con­tract by Air In­dia’s Hockey Team coach War­ren Lobo. The young striker spent the next two years play­ing in the Ger­man League and went on to be rated as the high­est scor­ing player with 15 goals in nine matches in 2010.

BREAK­ING BAR­RI­ERS Al­most 10 years ago, Walmiki was di­ag­nosed with an ex­tra bone in his knee, which made run­ning dif­fi­cult. How­ever, he didn’t let this hand­i­cap af­fect his game. Com­ing from ex­tremely hum­ble back­ground, Walmiki’s house in the slums of Marine Lines of­ten had no elec­tric­ity or water. How­ever, he man­aged to stay fo­cused on his train­ing un­der coach Marz­a­ban Pa­tel who runs the Bom­bay Repub­li­can Club. “Fo­cus­ing on the sport kept me from think­ing about my prob­lems,” he says. Con­tact: yvalmiki@ya­

sec­ond opinion “His pos­i­tive at­ti­tude to the sport has got him an early op­por­tu­nity to rep­re­sent the coun­try” MARZ­A­BAN PA­TEL, COACH, BOM­BAY REPUB­LI­CAN CLUB

“My com­mit­ment to the game is a trib­ute to my coun­try”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.