We were very focused on the game: Madalasa Hazarika
It is possible to bring back the golden days of State table tennis by taking some positive steps, feels former
Our Sports Reporter
GUWAHATI: It is possible to bring back the golden days of State table tennis by taking some positive steps, feels former international Table Tennis Player Madalasa Hazarika Baruah. In an interaction with The Sentinel the Deputy General Manager (Administration) of OIL (Pipeline) also shared some of her experience during the playing days. Here is the excerpt.
The Sentinel (TS): What are your most memorable moments?
Madalasa: One of my most memorable and golden moments was when I became the first girl from Assam to become the National Girls' Champion in 1978. It was an awesome experience to lift the Winner's Trophy and make our state proud. I was also ranked Indian number one amongst girls' in the same year. Although many a times, I was deprived from being selected in the Indian Team during my early part of the career I didn't give up and kept on practicing and playing with utmost dedication and sincerity and brought laurel for the State.
TS: Assam TT was a super power in Indian Circuit during your days. How was it possible?
Madalasa: Yes, during the late 70s and 80s, Assam was a super power in Indian Table Tennis Circuit. Most of the players of that era were dedicated towards the game. Our priority was Table Tennis and then comes studies. Moreover, the team spirit of the players of Assam was also talked by the players of other states. We were hard working and focused. Practiced both the times, morning as well as evening and tried to participate in maximum tournaments within Assam as well as India. Educational Institutes as well as our teachers also played a very crucial role in that period which helped us to stay focused on the game.
TS: Legendary TT player Monalisa Baruah Mehta was your doubles partner…
Madalasa: We were really a very good doubles pair. She was a left hander and I am right hander, which is supposed to be a very good combination for doubles. Moreover, our temperaments and understandings matched very well. She had stylish and beautiful strokes and was always focused and hard worker.
TS: Is it possible to bring back the golden days of State TT?
Madalasa: Yes. First of all I feel the players should have an ambition and work hard with utmost dedication to achieve it. Parents and teachers support and encouragement is also very important. Now, since the game has changed a lot focus should be given for the technical aspects too. Besides, the players should try to participate in maximum tournaments for best match practice. Further, for motivating the players to take up sports seriously, there should be a system for job security for the players. Assam should also have one Table Tennis Academy for developing players from the root level in line with the concept of 'Khelo India'.
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