Emerging Glorious: NITR FC at Inter NIT
Nov 06, 2017 | Mrinal Chaudhary
One of the brightest shining stars of the Sporting Fraternity of NITR has been the Football team. It participated in the recently concluded Inter-NIT Football Tournament hosted by National Institute of Technology, Agartala. Team Monday Morning brings to you a detailed account of the experience and performance of the team in the tournament.
The team Captain Depapriya Chhotray describes the support provided by the Institute as perfect. The expenses of the travel of the team from Rourkela to Agartala, has been reimbursed by the Institute. First Aid, Glucose and a daily allowance of 200 INR were also under the provisions of the Institute. The team was also provided with a temporary coach for 20 days, which turned out quite beneficial for preparing and honing the skills of the team. The floodlights in Dilip Tirkey Stadium, where the practice sessions were held were also of the expected quality. The only glitch in the preparation was manifested in the form of the terrain (ground) where the team practiced upon. The unevenness and the hardness of the terrain have caused injuries to several players. The team recommends that the Dilip Tirkey Stadium should be watered regularly and it’s usage for several sports like Cricket and Hockey should be restricted. Instead, each team should be provided with designated facilities customised for each sport to get the optimum results.
FACILITIES AND HOSPITALITY
The overall arrangements were up to the mark. The team doesn’t have any complaints regarding food and accommodation, as those were reasonable. There were no delays in arranging commute or provision of facilities in the rooms. However, there were glaring loopholes in the fixtures. It was evident from the fact that there were a total of 16 participating teams in the tournament, but there were no quarterfinal fixtures and semi-finals were held directly, with only 1 team from each group qualifying for the semi-final. Tournaments of such stature usually have a quarter-final round, which wasn’t held in the recently concluded tournament.
In the previous academic session, the team participated in Spardha 2016 (sports festival of IIT BHU), in which it was ousted in the group stages. Subsequently, they participated in the Sports Fest of National Law University, Odisha in which it secured the runners-up title. The team could not participate in Inter-NIT the previous time due to budget constraints.
The tournament began on the 26th of October, 2017. The team played against NIT Warangal in the first match of group stages. They defeated Warangal with an elegant score of 4-0 with Shreyanshu Shekhar scoring 2 goals. This goal was followed by a beautiful build-up which turned into a goal by Salah Hussein. A free kick by Debapriya Chhotray which was deflected into the net by the defender of the opposing team, sealed the match for NIT, Rourkela. The next match the team played in the group stages was against NIT Nagpur, which resulted in a draw with neither side having fair chances on goal. The next match against NIT Manipur provided the team with a good number of goal scoring chances. The team was able to convert from a corner. The goal scoring header came straight from Siddhant Das, the Defender. All this resulted in the team leading the group by 7 points and securing a chance to play in the semi-finals.
The team played against NIT Meghalaya in the Semi-Finals. It could score in the early half courtesy to a cross by Anurup Mishra which facilitated a perfect header from Pratyush Dash. However, it became difficult for them to move par the goalkeeper in the latter half of the match. The match concluded with NITR losing in the penalties (4-5). The team again lost in the penalties (3-4) in the playoff for the third-place against NIT Agartala. Thus, the final position of NITR was 4th in the tournament.
The team’s performance in a tournament of this scale has definitely improved. Talking about changes in Strategy, the team had worked immensely upon its finishing accuracy for all those who played at the front.
The team consisted of Anurup Mishra, Srinibash Sahoo, Shreyanshu Sekhar Singh, Nirmal Kumar Munda, Sidhant Das, Pratyush Dash, Arghya Majumdar, Sanjay Hansdak, Amrit Puhan, Rishabh Pal, Prashant Sharma, Amit Kumar Naik, Ponnannah Bopaiah, Rohan Dhotre and Salah Hussein.
The Captain of the team, while talking about the future endeavors states that the team has seen the standards of the game played in the tournaments and will act in accordance to improve their game. The following is an excerpt from a conversation with him:
I would like to thank the whole team for the amount of dedication, hard work they have put to make our collective efforts count. The team has demonstrated exceptional unity even in times of failure. It was a personally enriching experience to play with these boys. I would like to thank our esteemed Director Prof. Animesh Biswas for all the support and encouragement he has provided and Prof.Pranakrishna Rout, who believed in us, accompanied us and helped us at every juncture.
Team Monday Morning wishes that the team keeps on displaying true sportsmanship and achieves excellence in the subsequent tournaments.