Because I was a admirer of the player, I told him that I could speak with a few ANFA coaches and have them look at him privately to see if he was up to the mark. The kid however told me that he was a bit busy these days with "other commitments" and that he'll try-out some other time. What?! The kid's goal since the day I met him was to become a professional footballer, but with opportunity sitting right before him he was not even bothered to grab it.
This had me thinking - does Nepali sport lack dedication? Let's not confuse dedication and sacrifice. Yes, almost all Nepali sportsmen make great sacrifices - be it sacrificing time, money, education and family to pursue their passion in a sector where there is little reward and tons of struggle. But after that sacrifice, do they have the dedication to reach the top? To do whatever it takes to be the best they can at their sport.
By dedication I don't mean just working hard, but going over and beyond what others are doing. Practicing 1,000 hours to improve your sprinting speed by 1,000th of a second.
- A player waking up everyday at 5 in the morning and shooting 500 jump shots with his weaker hand to improve his overall game
- A coach reading Arsene Wenger's (coach of Arsenal FC) biography to just get one extra insight into top class coaching
- An official spending hours on sports websites to find that cutting edge idea to develop his sport
Maybe it's not so much the lack of money, facilities, and foreign training that is hindering Nepali sports, but a lack of dedication.