Union Territory

South Kashmir boys who Rose above all odds to become Volleyball stars

Dar Muneeb

Srinagar, March 17(KS): Volley ball in South Kashmir is gaining pace and our young athletes are shining at state and national level. These boys rose above the turbulence and evolve as a volleyball stars. There is a success story behind every stardom that we are going to present here to pay them a homage as a Volleyball lover. We have choosed some players who are currently playing or have recently represented UT at national level. There stories are inspirational owing to the current menance of drugs in South Kashmir.

Hailing from district Kulgam’s Bogund village, Shakir Ashraf aka Chotu has gained name and popularity among the youth of Kashmir.

Talking to Kashmir Scroll about his journey in Volleyball, opened up on his introduction to the sport and further talked about his representation for J and K in an ongoing tournament in Orissa.

“I started playing in 2010 when l was 13 years old. I initially started playing it solely for entertainment purposes at that time!. Then friends admired my way of playing and l started taking it seriously. I then joined Jessi volleyball club Bogund and attained huge success throughout the state” said Shakir

Shakir represented his school team and graduated to senior-group national tournaments, owing to impressive performances. He took part in his first senior state level in 2017 for Kulgam district and two years later, earned his maiden national senior-group call-up. Till now he has represented J and K in four national championships in four different states.

Talking about the National tournaments, he said national tournaments are very critical. “I think for all the players, this is the right kind of platform to show their skills and performance,” he said.

Shakir is currently playing for J and K in the ongoing national volleyball championship in Orissa” l feel privileged to represent my state and it is a great honor to play here( Orissa) in front of world-class players. It gives a lot of confidence and the inner feeling that we too can make it to the international level,”.

Till now Shakir has won many medals including one bronze medal. As a captain, he has played an important role in crowning his team to the first state-level championship cup.

” Managing between studies and sports is a very uphill task. But your success kept you going and occasionally looking at others’ success motives you. The biggest secret of success is hard work. Keeping the pace of consistency and self-training is a key to sportsmanship,” he said

He has played volleyball in all districts of Kashmir and he enjoys stint fan following across Kashmir and his sole aim is to represent the country at international level ” It is a dream for me to represent India at International level. It gives immense pleasure and prestige to represent your country at any level,”.

Besides the state, he had also represented Brown munde club and Smasher Punch club.

From setter, attacker to counter attacker Danish Kabir is a complete package for volleyball clubs. This versatility adds to his integrity and it was not difficult for him to represent J and K at the national level.

Hailing from South Kashmir’s Anantnag district, Danish Kabir 23, is a threat for volleyball fans to watch.

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Talking to Kashmir Scroll he said, he was 12 years old when he started playing volleyball. He got inspired while watching volleyball matches in his hometown. For Spartan club he is currently playing as attacker and setter.” I think in Volleyball setter and attacker are two important positions.

They keep check on opponents and adhere your capacity” he said
He has played in four nationals and six state-level competitions. He has been captain of Brown Munde volleyball club and he has played an excellent role in his team throughout the 33rd senior state volleyball championship which was held at Polo ground Srinagar and leads his team to a thumping win in that recently concluded volleyball championship.

” l will say sometimes aggression and some times composure pays to your hard work. Presence of your mind at a crucial juncture of match plays an important role in drawing your team to winning side” he said adding ” everybody owns some type of talent but recognizing your potential and nourishing it accordingly is what you get through hard work.

Consistency and discipline are the tools to scale your success rate,”.
Till now Danish has won numerous medals and awards from his national and state participation. ” Medals are just reminders that you are in a good field and maintain your consistency more will touch your skin”.
Talking about his plans” make it to international level is the only goal l am adhering right now” he said adding
“Earlier, I did not follow sports much and then I grew up and started following cricket. There is no particular athlete I look up to. I just strive for excellence every time I go out to play,” said Kabir.

He thinks games are the best ways to keep youth away from drugs and more focus should be given to games.

Haroon Rashid, 18 started his volleyball journey when he was 11-year-old from his school. He got inspired by famous volleyball player Jessi, that is why his nickname is too Jessi. A 5’8″ tall is a darling player for clubs and his representation adds their excellence.
Considering motivation as an important tool for a person to keep going, he said ” when you grow up watching volleyball, the shouts around the courts, the seriousness among players and surrealistic behavior of fans, it keeps tickling your mind to go into it. Your commitment and determination for a game spark your inner feeling and that motivates you for drenching in any game”.

He believes there are no shortcuts in success ” work hard and you will get what you need. Even winters do not ditch my passion for games and l believe that is the plus point for my success rate”.

Hailing from Pulwama district’s Koil village, Haroon Rashid is the youngest player who represented the UT in the national junior championship in Burdwan west Bengal. He rose to this level by scaling bit by bit district and UT trails.

” Behind every fearless player is a fearless coach. And my coach Muneer ul Alam has played an important role in my success. He believed in me and provided me an important strategy for riding”. he said.

He has won 10 national-level and 7 state-level medals for his up-to-the-mark performances. He has represented many volleyball clubs like Elite volleyball club, brown munde club, and star volleyball club Pulwama.
He plans to play in the senior national team. He believes he will make it by his hard work to the national team.

Another player Basit Shakeel from Noorpora Tral started his volleyball when he was 10 years old while talking with Kashmir Scroll he said, “I started my volleyball journey in 2015 as a setter in our local village team, after 2 years I started playing as a counter spiker which adds my character for the game” adding ” from setter position to counter spiker Mr. Showkat Bhat, Altaf Shah and Wani Manzoor all former players guided me to play as a good counter spiker, especially Showkat Bhat helped me a lot. I m very thankful to all of them for helping me accomplish such a great success”.

Currently, he is studying in 11th standard and till now he has received 10 medals, 3 state certificates, 2 school national certificates, and one junior national certificate. He was recently selected for the Junior national volleyball championship that was held in West Bengal.

“I have played for 3 volleyball clubs: Noorpora volleyball club, Elite Volleyball Club, Brown Munde volleyball Club. I want to say my volleyball family to stay focused on their game and thrive the game plan”. he said adding ” practice makes the man perfect.

I practice every day with my pals for two to five hours. Which has helped me to attain adept knowledge of the game,”.

Shariq Ahmad is a volley star from Shopian’s Nagbal village. He came into the limelight with his one-man show during the final of the district volley competition in shopian. From a young age, he has relished the craze for volleyball. He represents Super Speaker volleyball club Shopian.

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” l have started my volleyball journey from a very young age. I become the main player of my village team and with the way started growing to the heights in volleyball” he said.

Shariq believes consistency along with proper mentors guides players to excellence.
Till now he has received many national and state medals. He feels pleased that he has represented UT at the national player.

Another player Rouf Ah dar from Darbagh shopian is a striving volleyball player who rose to success in a minute time. Belonging to a poor family, Dar has chosen a path less trodden upon. Right now he is only 16 but his name is reverberating as he has played for decades.

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” I choose volleyball because volleyball was my favorite game from my childhood.

Gaining fame is not my goal but associating volleyball with my name is “. Adding ” l think athletics is the best way to present yourself in your society”

Rouf enjoys a huge fan following and he feels lucky for it. ” l have played for many clubs like Brown Munde, old skool volleyball club, etc. I played many state-level completion representing my district and my goal is to make juniors national level competition”.
He believes success only comes when you yearn for it.

He feels there is huge potential and talent among the youth of Kashmir but the better platform is the need of the hour.

Till now he has won many competitions as a captain and received 12 state-level medals.

South Kashmir is full of volleyball players but they all complain about the lack of infrastructure and stadiums.

They all requested the volleyball association Kashmir and sports council for attention, so that talent does not go in vain.(Kashmir Scroll)

Kashmir Scroll Webdesk

Kashmir Scroll is an online news project started by the young journalists of Kashmir.

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