Softball teams hard at work

Game beats odds to debut in Dhanbad district Olympics

By Praduman Choubey
  • Published 14.10.17
The softball tournament in progress at Jagjivan Nagar grounds in Dhanbad on Friday. Picture by Gautam Dey

No ground, no gloves, no balls and no basic facilities. Despite all the handicap, Dhanbad Softball Association successfully organised a six-team tournament as part of the Dhanbad District Olympic Games at Jagjivan Nagar grounds today.

Association general secretary Rajiv Kumar said they floated the group just two months ago and promoted the game in different schools of the town. "On October 10, we organised a training session for all the teams at the ground in which around 90 players participated," he said.

Kumar said since the game is at a nascent stage in the district, there were no professionals and most of the players were students from various schools. The six teams that participated were Shining Star Club, Sijua Club, Koylanagar, Jagjivan Nagar, Vikas Nagar and Guru Gobind Public School. In the final, Guru Govind Singh Public School beat Vikash Nagar Club 11-3 to emerge as champions.

"There's no ground to play. There are no coaches and sport gears, too. Although we plan to buy gloves, bats and other accessories, a proper softball ground is needed the most," he said. Soft-ball is a variant of baseball played with a larger ball on a smaller field.

"The boundary wall of Jagj-ivan Nagar ground is damaged. The ground is also uneven at some places and we spend two days preparing it for the event. We will request the district administration to give us a field for practice," he added.

Umesh Kumar Yadav, a class 12 student of Guru Gobind Singh Public School and captain of the winning team said, "Even a couple of months ago, I knew nothing of softball except seeing it on the Internet. When the association members came to our school, I readily agreed to be a part of the school team and took part in the training camp." Amaan Ali, a member of Sijua Club said, "the initiative taken by the association is praiseworthy. It gave us an opportunity to learn and play the game."