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Interview with Sandeep Kandola : "Stopping U Mumba's Anup Kumar was most difficult for me"

Sandeep Kandola speaks about his early introduction in the sport, the most difficult players to tackle and a lot more.

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Sandeep Kandola Accepting the Inspiring Defender Award

Sandeep Kandola is an 18-year-old young boy from a small village Budayan of Haryana state. Few can dream of playing in such a big tournament at such age, but not only is he playing but he has also emerged as one of the best defenders of Star Sports Pro Kabaddi with more than 50 tackle points.

Presently pursuing his first year in college,  Sandeep wants to represent India at International level. Speaking to Sportskeeda, Sandeep told us about his journey so far. He also opens up about his game and his techniques before the Knock-out stage.

Also read: Anup Kumar: “Pro Kabaddi League has completely changed the sport”

Here are the excerpts:

Q. When did you start playing Kabaddi?

A: I started playing Kabaddi almost 6 years ago from my school. I started playing Kabaddi from my village Budayan.

Q. What kind of support did you get from your family for playing Kabaddi?

A: My parents used to do farming. My elder brother supported my Kabaddi because he also used to play Kabaddi. I was not that good in studies during my school time. My parents used to scold me for the injuries. They used to tell me that what is this concentrate on your studies and all but my brother used to encourage me for playing Kabaddi.

Now they are happy that I am playing at such a big level. Now everyone from my family supports me.

Q. Who used to scold you more at home? Your father or your mother?

A: My father used to scold me more than my mother.

Q. How  did you get selected for Telugu Titans?

A: I played junior national last year at Kerala. Jagmohan sir was there for the player selections. He selected me from there for Telugu Titan.

Q. You are just 18 years old and playing at such a huge level. How much of a help will this be for your career?

A: I feel really good that I am playing at such level. I never thought about it, this is like a dream comes true for me. I am lucky that I got a chance to play with such big players.

Q. What goes through in your mind when you have to tackle star raiders like Anup Kumar, Ajay Thakur etc?

A: I feel very good when I tackle big players who already represented India. I never took pressure on me and play freely. My seniors encourage me and I also know that such moments will enhance my chances to represent the national team.

My friend Deepak Nivas Hudda always tells me to play freely. He guides at every step and support me also.

Q. You have played against every team and against the big players. Which player or team you feel is the most difficult to tackle and it make you put in the extra effort to make it successful?

A: According to me each and every player is same on the mat, but still I say that tackling Anup Kumar is the most difficult task for me.

Q. What do you want to say about your pursuit?

A: I always look at the raider when he was looking to some other side while exit, I just went in and surprised him with my pursuit. I always try to get more and more points for the team. I always get points with my pursuit.

Q. What is your dream in Kabaddi?

A: I am studying in my 1st year right now. First, I want to win this Star Sports Pro Kabaddi title for my team. My dream is to play for Indian team and win as much tournament I can for the nation.

I will continue to play Kabaddi along with continuing my academics. 

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