Football is the answer – Part 1

My dad scraped by as a driver, we could barely make ends meet at home. Life was a daily struggle with nothing much to look forward to. I was in 3rd grade when I started to enjoy watching the older kids at school play football. That playground became my happy place.

Soon, I joined the team, but didn’t have accessories. I was mocked when I showed up in jeans and a tucked shirt for a camp. I wasn’t selected for a tournament because we couldn’t afford sports shoes. These little things add up, you lose your chances, your esteem – it takes a lot to bounce back. When my parents saved and finally bought my first shoes, I was so excited and practiced so hard, kicking coconut shells, the shoes tore open within weeks! Back to square 1.


All I knew was football = my life.

Drawn by the sports facilities good schools offered, I decided education & employment would be my lifeline. Mom was a fixture at the Principal’s office requesting school fee subsidies. A friend part-sponsored college. Peers lent kits. Despite 6 surgeries, I came alive by training relentlessly; in scorching heat or muddy monsoons. I played for University & as the captain, I led us to State and Nationals. I landed a job that offered both work and play.


Today, I have represented my company at the Nationals. I enjoyed every round of the tournaments and the sweat that brought us here. I love the accolades. But most of all, I love playing to be the best version of myself, every single day!

Thank you for glimpses behind the smiles Ananth D’Silva – Senior Business Analyst, Footballer

Contributed by: Ananth D’Silva | Location: Bangalore, India

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