UBA: From being a daily wage worker to Chennai Slam star: Here's Jairam Jat's inspirational story
Basketball and Jairam Jat, are synonymous, the lanky Rajputana Rifles sergeant is opponents envy and teams pride. His ability to anchor the team out of crisis has been his forte. The main livewire of the Chennai Slam has made his team and family proud.
For the former skipper of Indian basketball team, basketball is everything and he has all the reason to feel so.
Losing his father at a very young age, Jairam the eldest in the family of three (two brothers and one sister) has had his share of struggle. Working as daily wager worker in Kolputi, a village in Jaipur district in Rajasthan, and later moving to Chandani chowk in Delhi to lift luggage (cooly) has faced his shares of woes in life. But, at the end all the commitments and desire to be somebody in life paid off.
"Being the eldest in the family and in the absence of my father, I had to work to meets ends for the family,” said Jairam. Further adding, "I was asked to fetch for myself if I wanted to study, and I started working as a daily labourer and finished my X standard. Thereafter I went to Delhi and in chandani Chowk worked a s a cooly and completed my XII,” said Jairam who in the process sent money back home.
"And as I was going though rough weather I was told that Army were recruiting jawans in Delhi and I was selected, things changed for me and my family in the year 2000,” said Jairam about his rough enroute to the road of success. But, it was only after he started playing basketball things turned good for this Jat.
“Thanks to my height, I picked up the game well and soon was selected to represent Army in the inter Services meet. That was the beginning and I went on to make the most of it, thanks to basketball, today people known me not because of anything but because of basketball,” said Jairam, the oldest member of the third edition of UBA, professional basketball league being played in Pune while talking to Sportskeeda.
And in the last 16 years, Jairam has represented the country at the Asian Games and also led the team in many internationals. "Yes, I am proud of captaining the Indian side, but for basketball I would have been nothing, basketball has given me a new lease of life,” said Jairam.
Jairam is thankful to UBA to have given a boost to Indian basketball. "I have played at the highest level, but there are many youngsters waiting in the wings, and UBA is the right path," he said about UBA which has not only brought money for the players but exposure and awareness among the youngsters.