Rudolph D’Souza of St Mary’s SSC (Mazagaon) and Uzair Ansari of St Ignatius (Jacob Circle) will get an opportunity to visit the Queens Park Rangers football academy in London for a four-week coaching clinic.
Both kids emerged as victors from among the 30 shortlisted candidates who underwent strenuous training sessions after being hand-picked from 4100 students who participated in the Milind Deora Soccer Championship held at the Western Railway ground in Mahalaxmi.
Uzair (14), who missed the trials last year, was glad to have finally made it. “I was very sad last year as I was unable to participate in the 2011 trials. This year, I had to give my best. After my name featured in the shortlist, I went all out. When the QPR coach asked me to play with younger kids, I felt that my chances of being selected were bleak. But when my name was announced, I was relieved,” he said.
For 12-year-old Rudolph, it was a big moment. “I will be travelling abroad for the first time and staying away from my parents. But I know that I will come back a better football player,” he said.
Richard Allen, QPR FC Head of Academy said, “It’s a great opportunity for us at Queens Park Rangers to work with kids. There were some really talented kids this time around.
“We hope we can train them well at our London academy and help them grow. We hope this relationship can build year on year, so more kids can have the same opportunity.”