With just a day to go before Kabaddi World Cup kicks off at Jalandhar, various players were seen gearing up during the final phase of the trials being conducted at conducted here at Guru Nanak Dev Stadium on Thursday.
A kabaddi coach from Hisar, Haryana, Suresh Kumar, who also runs an academy, Grameen Vikash Kabaddi Academy at Nada village for the past 10 years shared his views as well. On being asked to give an account on the current stature of the traditional sport in the state, Kumar said, “After Punjab, Haryana is probably the most sought after destination for promising kabaddi players in the country. We have kabaddi academies almost in every village keep themselves busy in training players throughout the year.”
Kumar claims that he has trained more than ten women kabaddi players in over the period of 10 years, each of whom have been a part of the national team. When asked to share tips for a lasting career in kabaddi, he said, “Player’s performance indeed is the most significant aspect of the game and it holds true for any sport in the world but what is essential in kabaddi is to avoid injuries during practice sessions, trials and matches. It is perhaps the most injury-prone sport played anywhere in the world. Therefore, playing a safe and clean game is very important.”
Suman Lata, a kabaddi player from Hisar, who has already played in the Indian kabaddi team twice, unfortunately got eliminated in the second phase of trials conducted last month.
Rather than whining on missing out on a precious opportunity to play for India the third time, putting her experience to some use, she was seen interacting, monitoring, and guiding other female players from her academy.While Meneka, Karmi and Sunita after giving a thrilling performance in the finals trials were optimistic about playing for the Indian side for the first time.They have performed exceedingly in various rural, state and national level events in the past.
While expressing their keen interest to play for the country, they said that after getting selected in the first two phases of trials, the last day of the trials was a litmus test, in a way, for them as it would determine their fate in terms of whether they would make their debut this year or not.