Have you ever seen a party on a squash court? Well, minus the cake and candles, World Squash Day (October 5) at the Indian Squash Academy, recently, played out exactly the way you would imagine. Parents and kids came together for a morning-long marathon of games–ranging from badminton to racquet ball and of course the one that the day is dedicated to, ‘squash’. Amid plenty of loud cheering, strewn water bottles and chatter, national coach Cyrus Poncha says, “This is our third year of celebrating World Squash Day and we’ve divided our squads into two teams,” he gestures forward. “The Red Devils and the All Blacks...” The former may ring a bell to Manchester United fans.
Poncha adds with a smile, “And it all ends with a potluck lunch that the students have brought, once we get done with the prize distribution.”
Also, in the spirit of the Joy of Giving week, the young players have collected a large box of assorted items ranging from old shoes to clothes to comics to be given to the children of the Matru Mandir school next week. Rekha Ramachandran who runs the school and whose husband is the President of the World Squash Federation, said, “I wanted to give the kids something too. So we’re giving out 50 racquets to the ISA students and the money from the cost of each racquet will go to another NGO, the Arvind Foundation that serves children with special needs.” And in order to teach the message of giving as early as possible, Ramachandran had her two-year-old grandson Dhruva to distribute the racquets.
Also part of the function was the felicitation of Arjuna awardee Joshna Chinappa and gold medalist at the recent second Asian Youth Games, Kush Kumar.