Indian girls learn to bend it like Cindy

Cindy Parlow, a former American World Cup winner and two-time Olympic gold medallist, gave 120 Delhi girls their first lessons in soccer

Updated: January 07, 2014 21:29 IST
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Cindy ParlowFormer American World Cup winner and two-time Olympic gold medalist Cindy Parlow has brought her love and passion for football all the way to India. Parlow is currently in New Delhi, conducting a camp for young Indian girls who aspire to become footballers and believes that there is great potential in the Indian women's football team.

Parlow is in the Indian capital to train 120 girls as a part of collaboration between an Indian NGO named Cequin, YUWA -- an initiative to empower girls through football and Goal4Girls, an America-based NGO.

While Parlow left her job as a manager of one of America's best women's football clubs to teach kids in India, young American girls from the NGOs took up odd jobs like washing cars and sales to raise funds on their own to make the training programme possible in India.

Another group of young girls from YUWA came from Jharkhand to be a part of the camp. It was the same set of girls who were slapped and made to sweep floors in order to travel to Spain for a tournament where they went on to clinch a medal. This camp has given them a chance to receive training from a seasoned campaigner of the sport.

Talking to NDTV, Parlow said, "I'm here because I love it. This is what I love to do. So I think you can see it when I'm walking and talking to the kids. I feel fortunate to be here. To be able to spread my passion for a game I have loved my entire life with a whole new color. They are giving me as much as I'm giving them so I feel fortunate to be here."

Parlow believes that sky is the limit for the current Indian women's team -- which is ranked three times higher than the men's team.

Talking about the camp, Parlow said, "In the short week we have been here, we have interacted with 700 girls already. If India really invested in soccer they could be the best in the world."

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