C'wealth: India's very own Ali was a wannabe footballer

Updated: 25 February 2007 08:28 IST

Mohammed Ali Qamar, the Kolkata boy who became the boxing champion at Commonwealth Games doing justice to his name, had actually aspired to become a footballer

Kolkata:

Mohammed Ali Qamar, the city boy who became the boxing champion at Commonwealth Games doing justice to his name, had actually aspired to become a footballer in his poverty-striken childhood days. Though a die hard fan of the original 'Ali', Qamar used to chase the ball day and night in a shabby park in Kidderpore area before he was picked up by one Mehrajuddin Ahmed who brought him to the ring, just beside the park. Sixth among the seven off-springs of a poor Muslim family, Qamar however had it in his blood as his two elder brothers Jahid and Shajid were good talents and their father Mohameed Kamaruddin a sports enthusiast. Qamar proved his coach right at his very first state championship in 1994. The Bengal Ameteur Boxing Federation president Asit Banerjee, who spotted the boy in 1994, took the responsibility on his shoulders to chart out Qamar's route to success. Banerjee, also a senior vice president of All India Ameteur Boxing Federation, reminded him in the Patiala camp just before the Commonwealth Games: "You are already 22 -- it has to be now or never". "Now he has done it, his next target should be the Athens Olympic Games. I have started counting on him for a gold in Greece," Banerjee said here today. A thrilled Mehrajuddin took out a victory procession today near his ward's Nabab Ali Lane house. (PTI)

Topics : Boxing
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