Love of Badminton
Many sports personalities began their career in humble places. The Nehru Stadium in Faridkot, India, is one such place. It has been home to many athletes, some even competed at the Olympics. Sponsored child, Arshdeep, trains here in badminton."I love badminton," says Arshdeep. Arshdeep is in Grade 9 and has a passion for badminton. "Before, I lacked confidence to even speak to others, let alone competing with so many players. But thanks to World Vision's intervention in my life, I am now confident to say no dream is too big!" exclaims Arshdeep with a smile.
Not Bound by Limits
There are very limited sports facilities for children in Arshdeep's community. "Badminton is an indoor sport but the space provided is not sufficient for children to play and practise freely," says Mr. Kumar, Arshdeep's teacher.
A makeshift outdoor court was set up to provide a space for children to practise. Although there are slight gusts of wind, Arshdeep and her friend are not deterred from their game. "It's not the best location to play but, at least, it gives me a place to practise what I learned from coaching lessons and I also have fun," says Arshdeep.
To Beat the Best
They run, they skip, they stretch and they run some more. Training is not easy for Arshdeep and her peers, but stamina and agility are very important in badminton. "Even though the children come for practice every day, they barely get to play even 15 minutes of the two hours they spend here. Most of their time is spent on exercise, which will, eventually, improve their performance," explains Sharma, Arshdeep's coach.
"To be the best, you have to beat the best," Arshdeep continues, "I like to play with someone better than me, so I can learn and improve my skills and, maybe, beat them someday."
Arshdeep practising in the stadium with other players.
Never Give Up
Arshdeep is also part of the youth girls club organised by World Vision, where she met many friends. "I first started playing sports at the club," says Arshdeep. "It was there that I developed a keen interest in badminton."
Although, Arshdeep may not be an Olympian, she is determined to continue playing badminton no matter where life takes her. "I want to be an engineer when I grow up. I know it requires a lot of work, but I will put my mind to it and give time for both my studies and badminton. It's a passion I won't give up," she says confidently.