Wednesday, October 18, 2000,
Chandigarh, India

L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


He beat odds to become champion
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Oct 17 Imagine an underprivileged boy, living in a small room in a stadium, becoming a national badminton champion. Harish Chander is that boy. His father is a watchman in the local Shastri Badminton Hall.

Although his father did not have enough resources to promote him, he did his best. Harish gives the credit of his success to his father, Mr Babu Lal, and coach Gian Inder Singh.

Harish was equally good at playing basketball and badminton when he was a child, but his coach advised him to opt for badminton and become a professional.

Harish began his career in 1985 and worked hard under the guidance of Gian Inder Singh.

In 1987, he won a gold medal at the Punjab State Games at Phagwara. He also won the National Badminton Championship at Hyderabad in 1988. He won a gold medal in the National Games at Calicut in 1989. He won the Mini National Badminton Championship at Calicut in 1991 and got a gold medal in the National School Games in Mizoram in 1992. The list of his achievements is long.

Harish joined the South-Eastern Railway as a junior clerk in 1995. He says that Railways is one organisation that encourages sportspersons. He said the government should identify talent in the country and encourage budding sportspersons.

He says that badminton is an expensive game. A badminton player, on an average, uses four to five shuttlecocks in a day. One shuttlecock of international standard costs about Rs 50. Cheap shuttlecocks are available in market, but a professional player cannot afford to practice with these.

Harish said one should have the enthusiasm to achieve something, even in the absence of resources.Back

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