Leaving the Asian Games debacle behind Thakur is back again on the mat scoring crucial points for his side and just four points shy from a century of points for the season. It has been two and a half months since the skipper of the Indian team was seen sitting in sheer disbelief and breaking down in tears
The loss is very hard to digest for the man who became the first captain from the country, who failed to defend the title. Speaking in an interview with FirstPost, India’s raiding machine gave an insight into the emotions he has gone through ever since the devastating loss to Iran in the 2018 Asian Games.
“Sach batau toh meri woh kabaddi khelne wali khushi gayab hai. (To be honest, I have lost the joy of playing kabaddi),”. “I haven’t celebrated much when I have scored a point this season, I don’t do my trademark frog jump anymore. I’m just unable to forget what happened with us at the Asian Games,” said Thakur.
Thakur also spoke about how he struggled to eat properly in days following the Asian Games and how difficult it was for him to sleep after the Asian Games loss.
“The result is hard to digest as we had never lost a game at the Asian Games. For me personally, it’s an even bigger blemish as I was the captain of that team. People may or may not remember who played in the team that failed to win the gold medal at Asian Games, but they will surely remember that Ajay Thakur was the captain of that team. I don’t think I will ever be able to forget this, it’s a dark spot on my kabaddi career,” Thakur stated.
“At night when I used to try and sleep, my mind used to go back to the game and I used to be filled with questions. Could we have done that better? Could we have done something different there? My father told me that I needed to move on, but I always used to end up thinking or talking about the game when I was with other players.”
For every athlete, there is always a chance for redemption and that comes to those who wait. Even in a sport like Kabaddi a chance for a player to get redemption can’t come sooner. A sport where international tournaments are few the wait for the player only gets painful.
“Till the time we win another international tournament; this pain will not ease. In kabaddi international matches don’t happen every now and then. Right now I’m playing in the league, sometimes I do well, sometimes I don’t do well, but I don’t feel alive. The happiness, the satisfaction that I obtained by playing kabaddi is missing,” the captain quoted.
Speaking about the quality of players that India posses at their disposal he said ” Once guys like Pardeep, Rahul. Deepak have the experience of 4-5 international tournaments, they will take India to such a high level which we have never seen any Indian side reach. These players have the quality, it’s just that they need more exposure at the international level,”.