Vidya Vikas Mandal, Margao held its annual sports awards day at Gomant Vidya Niketan hall. Chief guest for the function was Suraj Caculo who gave away the awards to 185 students of VVM’s Institutions, namely G R Kare college of Law, Shree Damodar college of Commerce and Economics, RMS Higher Secondary School and Vidya Vikas Academy along with president of VVM CA Sheela Gaunekar, chairman Sports Council Vikram Verlekar and journalist, Niraj Prabhu.
There was an interactive session before the awards ceremony, in which engineer turned Sports Journalist, Niraj Prabhu who moderated the session with Goa’s top sports man and women which included top shuttler, Anura Prabhudesai, teenage roller skater Rudra Dalal, BCCI match referee Vivek Kolambkar Chess player Amey Audi and former Goan chess star Ivana Furtado.
Prabhudesai emphasised that Indian badminton has become very competitive and she has to work very hard with her focus being on breaking inside the top-100 ranking in the world. Anura, who is now India rank 6 player, revealed that she knew she had found her sport to make a career in at the age of eight and despite calls from athletics and swimming coaches, Anura followed her heart and worked with dedication to go on to become the top national badminton player from Goa, at the age of 18.
Dalal is happy about his progress and spoke about the support he gets from the school and family members. His only worry is the lack of a state level skating rink in South Goa and he continues to practice at a private facility in Chinchinim.
Kolambkar is pained to see Goa being relegated from Elite level as state cricket seems to have crashed rock bottom. However the former Ranji Trophy captain and coach, feels that out -of-the-box thinking being applied to the sport of late from certain quarters, will help in building a sound cricket culture and talented youngsters could take shape in the next 10 years.
Audi feels his sport has enabled him to flourish in the academics as well and he stressed that sport and education can go hand in hand with persistence in training and resistance to temptations, which distract sports enthusiasts.
Ivana finds herself at a different stage in life with her education in the engineering stream being the priority. Looking back she feels, some mistakes that she committed, will be helpful to young sportspersons and she would like to move into teaching field, to guide youngsters.
President of Vidya Vikas Mandal, CA Sheela Gaunekar congratulated all the awards winners, Chairman Sports Council of VVM Vikram Verlekar welcomed the gathering and highlighted the purpose of such awards.