It's an emotional 100 for Godse's Manora
The Manora tourney has become an important domestic date for promising shuttlers. "This is my second tournament. I came to Mumbai only to play this tournament as it is a great learning experience," Nashik lad Vipul Chafekar, 14, said
Badminton enthusiast Manohar Godse, 78, celebrated a unique century at Bombay Gymkhana yesterday. The Manora badminton tournament, initiated by him in 1997, just completed it's 100th tournament last week. Godse, who represented India at the All England Senior Championships (veterans) in 1979, began the tournament to simply provide a platform for young, talented shuttlers.
Today, the academy organises five tournaments on an average per year across U-10, U-13, U-15 and U-17 categories. The current edition witnessed 371 participants. "In 1996, after almost 20 years of coaching and at the end of my playing career, I decided to do something for badminton; for young kids who want to play this sport at the higher level but are lacking opportunities. I started this tournament with an academy membership fee of R51 and a tournament fee of Rs 50. Till date the membership fee remains the same. The idea was not to make money. When I was a kid, we hardly got any opportunities, so providing kids the perfect platform gives me a lot more happiness than making money," Godse, a Matunga resident, told mid-day yesterday.
Over the years, the tournament has been graced by some prominent state and national shuttlers like Ajay Jayaram, Akshay Dewalkar, Prajakta Sawant, Tanvi Lad, Aditi Mutatkar, Harsheel Dani and Simran Singhi. The Manora tourney has become an important domestic date for promising shuttlers. "This is my second tournament. I came to Mumbai only to play this tournament as it is a great learning experience," Nashik lad Vipul Chafekar, 14, said.
Godse is grateful for the support he gets from individuals and Gymkhanas, who permit him to conduct the tournament free of cost. "Right from our first tournament at Matunga Gymkhana till date, none of the clubs [venues] have charged me anything. That's a great gesture. Simply watching these kids play badminton gives me immense happiness," said Godse, wiping away tears of joy.
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