For Mumbai’s Sony Norde, Hurricane Matthew a reminder of 2010 Haiti quake
The widespread destruction caused in his home country by the hurricane is eerily similar to the 2010 earthquake that hit the Caribbean country.football Updated: Oct 14, 2016 17:06 IST
Two days after Mumbai City FC’s forward Sony Norde landed in Mumbai, his thoughts are still back in his homeland of Haiti, which has been ravaged by Hurricane Matthew that has left over 1000 dead, as per some estimates.
After all, the widespread destruction caused in his home country by the hurricane is eerily similar to the 2010 earthquake that hit the Caribbean country, which ranks among the world’s poorest.
“The earthquake which happened in 2010 destroyed the country. Hurricane Mathew caused the same destruction in two cities, Jeremie and Les Cayes, which were under water. My family and friends in the country are safe but other people are facing too many problems,” Norde told HT.
Relief is apparent in the footballer’s voice. After all, the 2010 earthquake left scars that are still fresh for Norde.
“I lost my house, which was in the capital Port-au-Prince, in the 2010 earthquake. My grandfather also lost his house back then. I built a new house after the earthquake. But this time, the capital was not too affected by the hurricane,” Norde said.
Norde, who played in Mumbai City FC’s Indian Super League (ISL) match against Atletico de Kolkata on Tuesday, was part of the Haiti squad which were to play the 2017 Caribbean Cup qualifiers against French Guyana on October 5 and St Kitts and Nevis on October 11. However, the hurricane drowned out any chance of either match being played.
Football in the tiny country generates fanatical interest comparable only to Indian’s passion for cricket. Just like every other aspect of life, football too was severely affected by the 2010 earthquake. The Haiti Football Federation’s headquarters in the capital was razed to the ground, killing 37 of its employees. Lost in the rubble were all of the federation’s archives and trophies they had received throughout their history.
Haitian football, in a sense, had to start from scratch. The Sylvio Cator Stadium, where the Haitian national team play their home matches, was also partially destroyed and its pitch was used to house survivors. The national football league was also disrupted.
Norde said that this time around, the Haitian football league has been unaffected by the hurricane.
“Football has not been affected by the hurricane, because all games in the league happen in the capital, Port-au-Prince. So Haitian football is not affected,” he said.
Norde is hoping that this time around football can provide the balm.
“We have players playing in Canada, USA and European countries, these players will soon visit Haiti and bring world support for those affected.”