CHENNAI: What could be the most important thing a 12-year-old girl is worried about? The fact that she has to complete assignments to avoid punishment, or study for exams in advance so that she can tune into her favourite cartoon show without having a tiff with her parents? For most, yes.
For ambitious Diksha Aurobindo, it is thinking way ahead. Right after winning the U-13 ISA Junior Open for the first time, she shared her plans to get a degree in aerodynamics from Harvard University.
The Salem-born girl is very mature, and it’s not the first time someone has told her that. “People always tell me I’m just 12, and have already figured out what to do after school. My aim right now is to get into Harvard, and do a UG course in aerodynamics. I need to crack my SAT’s in the next two years in order to get there.”
And if that was not enough, “I don’t want to trouble my parents, because the tuition fee is very high, but squash can help me get a 100% scholarship,” she says confidently.
Diksha, who earlier went to a matriculation school, had to switch to home tuitions due to attendance issues. But she never let that affect her academics.
“Earlier, they were fine with me missing classes. They used to proudly say I’m a student of theirs. But after I came to Class 9, their rules didn’t allow me to continue,” she says, elaborating about her attendance issues..
Salem is a very quiet place, and there are very few activities for someone her age, according to Diksha.
“When I started, there was only one court in Salem where I could train, and it did not even have a name.” But that did not stop her from following her passion, and she adds that she owes everything to her parents for the constant support.
Asked if she is going to pursue the sport as a career, Diksha is realistic.
“After a certain age, I’m sure squash is not going to give me my bread and butter, until I play at the top level. Right now, I’m very much committed to the sport, and if things go well, then why not go for it?” asks the young squash player.