Two young Kashmiri footballers Basit Ahmad and Mohammad Asrar, who are going to play for Spanish third-division club Sociedad Deportiva Lenense Proinastur, on Tuesday called on state chief minister Mehbooba Mufti.
Students of standard 12, the two young valley footballers have been playing the game from childhood and one of them, Asrar, has played the Santosh Trophy, Durand Cup and I-League while Basit has played the sub-junior nationals and I-League besides other national-level football tournaments.
Congratulating the two, the chief minister said she was happy to see young boys and girls from the state breaking new ground in sports.
She said it is not a mere coincidence that the young generation was attaining feats in different fields, but it is the talent in them which is getting attracted.
“Our youth have ample talent. But do they have ample opportunities to display it,” Mufti asked.
Wishing them success in their forthcoming matches, she hoped that Basit and Asrar would become role models for many of state’s young people.
She reminded the two young players of the glorious past the northern state had in football adding that at one time Jammu and Kashmir gave the country the captain of the national team in Abdul Majeed Kakroo.
She hoped that J&K’s lost glory of football would be reclaimed and players like Basit and Asrar would be instrumental in ensuring that.
The two young players informed the Chief Minister about the multi-stage selection process and the rigorous coaching schedule they have been through. They also shared their thoughts about improving the game in the state.
The duo is shortly leaving for Madrid for coaching and other preparations.