Players of FC Legend, a junior team from The Legend, Sector 57, participating in Hindustan Times Great Indian Football Action (HT GIFA), had a fun packed month as they practised rigorously despite their tight academic schedule.
The team gathers every evening, trains and plans their game to put up a good show. All nine members of the team are very excited as they are going to participate in the tournament for the first time.
“HT GIFA is a great effort by HT to popularise the game. It provides us an opportunity to showcase our talent and enjoy the perfect environment with our friends,” 13-year-old Param Haash Arora said.
Even though it was difficult for the young team to maintain a balance between academics and sports, they said they are managing it well because of their passion for the game.
The team is focusing more on midfield play as it holds attack and defence together. They believe possession-based football will give them a good chance against most teams. They hope to go all the way in the tournament.
“The best part of the tournament is that it helps to build an atmosphere where we develop higher physical and mental levels. I am hopeful that we give our best performance in the tournament,” 11-year-old Nathan George said.
Some of the parents who are interested in the game oversee the practice sessions and help the team build strategies. The team members said HT GIFA has been a welcome break from the regular routine of school and academic work.
“The tournament has helped create a community feeling. We enjoy playing with players from different blocks in the condominiums. It is exciting to play against other societies,” 11-year-old Dev Jain said.
Parents are also enjoying the practice sessions as much as the team members.
“The experience so far has been wonderful. It binds the entire community together and we get to meet each other. It helps to develop a community feeling among residents,” Aashish Khanna, father of 13-year-old Araav Khanna, said.