For some players, Kabaddi is a game, for some a pathway to financial security and for some, it is even larger than life. One such instance in Manpreet Singh. The player who was once considered unfit to play the game, whose fame and accolades lost in the sand of time and changed the face of kabaddi setup forever.
The player who won a gold medal in World Cups was bullied by his own child. His son was bullied by his mates for calling his father a great kabaddi player. The school mates asked if his father is so great then he isn’t playing Pro Kabaddi.
The son complained about his father and the entire hurt Manpreet Singh the most. Then started a second innings in Manpreet Singh life, he worked on his fitness and fought his way back in Kabaddi. He had weight issues in the past, but he lost 47 kg and became a part of Patna Pirates. The veteran played a crucial role in helping Patna Pirates win their maiden title that season.
Later on, he became the coach of Gujarat Fortune Giants in season 5 and took his team to the finals in the next two seasons.
During the last match against Haryana Steelers Sportzcraazy got a chance to interview the veteran. Here are the highlights of the interview:-
Question – Define the struggles you faced during your two-decades-long career?
Answer – I have faced a lot of hardship since childhood, but passion towards the game propelled me to learn Kabaddi at various places and from various coaches. I have reached these heights from the grass root.
I got my government job due to kabaddi, there is not a single medal that I haven’t won. I have won 12 international gold medals that include 2 World Cup medals, 2 Asian games medal, university-level medals, Grade A, All India University, All India police.
But age plays a crucial role in sports, so eventually, I have quit the game because I wasn’t getting any younger and fitter.
Question – Do you face financial stability after the dawn of Pro Kabaddi?
Answer – I would like to thanks Star Sports and Pro Kabaddi that uplifted Kabaddi and gave players such a huge platform to showcase their talent. Young players who are yet to play international matches got employment and financial stability due to Pro Kabaddi. Now players are earning in crores even if they haven’t played internationally.
No one knew about Kabaddi before 2014, but now Kabaddi is played internationally, more and more nations are wanting to participate in Kabaddi and this all happened due to Pro Kabaddi.
Question – Do you think more leagues like Pro Kabaddi should be introduced in India because kabaddi has the second-highest viewership after Cricket?
Answer – I cannot comment on that, all I want is the promotion of Kabaddi.
Question – Do you feel recognized among public and do people appreciate your accolades?
Answer – Yes, do feel recognized, people do recognize me as Gujarat Fortune giants coach and that makes me feel really proud.
Question – What are your expectations from Gujarat Fortune Giants this season?
Answer – All I want is that Gujarat Fortune Giants should play really well. After the early setbacks, the team really showed the character, win and loss are part of the game and we will try to lift our game in the upcoming matches.