Jalandhar: Candy success as Mithapur village rises once more - rctim.com

Jalandhar: Candy success as Mithapur village rises once more - rctim.com

Tribune Information Service

Jalandhar, August 2

Within the newly-independent India, hockey sticks usual out of crooked branches plucked from bushes and khido (balls) produced from the ‘Akk da boota’ (calotropic gigantea) served because the earliest tools for the younger boys of Mithapur desirous to fulfill their sporting ardour.

 Mandeep’s father Ravinder Singh & mom Ravinderjit Kaur maintain sticks

Hockey was an intriguing sport picked up from the British on the close by Cantonment. After Swarup Singh’s superb 1952 Olympics outing, hockey grew to become a lifestyle. Military and hockey golf equipment fuelled passions. An exodus of village residents to overseas shores introduced sombre instances to the village hockey scene because the Nineties, fortunes have circled because of a revival that kicked off within the 2000s.

Varun’s mother and father flash a victory signal.

Good sticks

Right this moment even the youngest youngsters prepare with top-brand hockey sticks on the Mithapur Hockey Academy and Youth Sports activities Membership. A number of patrons — together with former Olympians, Pargat Singh, NRIs and the Spherical Glass Academy — are answerable for bringing Mithapur out of the rut.

The village has produced six hockey Olympics stalwarts — Swarup Singh (1952 Helsinki), Kulwant Singh (1972 Munich), Pargat Singh (1988,1992 and 1996), and now the trio of Manpreet Singh (who performed on the 2012 and 2016 Olympics too), Mandeep Singh and Varun Kumar.

The story of Mithapur has even gone international. Aussie legend Ric Charlesworth — a patron of the Mithapur Hockey Membership and the Spherical Glass Academy — is an everyday and has rubbed shoulders with village elders right here! The 70-student sturdy Mithapur Hockey Academy has state-of-the-art facilties and gamers have their very own jerseys, bottles, luggage and lack no funds for his or her coaching — which, veterans say, makes them envious.

There are a number of rags to riches tales and lots of gamers from modest houses have risen to affluence. The modest village is now dotted with enormous bungalows and kothis. Many former Olympians’ households have settled overseas — households of Swarup Singh and Kulwant Singh, for example; former coaches and residents have moved overseas too, and lots of have performed for English and Italian leagues. MLA Pargat Singh mentioned: “Within the 2000s the stadium was in tatters with 3-4 foot of sand. The rooms have been utilized by medication customers. Hockey legacy was getting misplaced.” Pargat, then Director (Sports activities) within the state authorities, needed to determine younger expertise. “I requested distinguished villagers to search out 10-12 good sporting youngsters to coach,” he added. “We discovered 42 youngsters. We levelled the stadium. Sukhminder Grewal (worldwide participant), Sarabjit Singh Sabi, Amrik Singh, Surinder Pal pitched in with hockey experience. Now medication are historical past, hockey is future.”

First batch

Whereas Manpreet was a part of the primary batch, later the households of Manpreet and Varun additionally rose to prominence from modest beginnings. The village now has 4 gamers marked out for future Olympics. At most gamers’ houses there’s a financial institution of hockey sticks any child can take — “if somebody wants a stick, they don’t should go empty handed”, mentioned Pargat. Manpreet and Mandeep recurrently coach children.

Surinder Pal Singh Ghugga (72), who performed for the East Bengal Membership for six years, says, “We had by no means seen cash as younger gamers, now youngsters coaching have uniforms we may solely dream of.”

“Mithapur had little agricultural land. There was no TV, hockey was the one leisure. Males in hordes headed to the village gurdwara with hockey sticks each night to play. The children used bushes as objectives,” he provides. “A majority of Military personnel of village started taking part in for military golf equipment and cash began coming in. The patronage of the East Bengal Membership introduced us prosperity.” “We’ve got many gifted youngsters who’re on par with one of the best of gamers,” coach Balwinder Singh says.


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