The Alphas attacking duo of Gurjant Singh and Florian Fuchs exults after scoring a goal against KL The Mumbai-based franchise, Dabang Mumbai, finished 5th in the recently concluded 2016 CoalIndia Hockey India League. However, they gained a lot of fans due to their exploits in the 4th editionof the league. Here are 5 reasons why the Alphas were the most likeable team in HIL 2016:
#1 Attacking style of play
At the end of this year’s HIL, one thing that can be surely said is that the Alphas have always looked for a win. If the team were losing a match, they would much rather go for the win rather than settle for a draw. They lived up to their name 'Dabang', which means to play without fear without any pressure.
On a few occasions, it was seen that when the Alphas were trailing by a goal and they won a penalty corner, they tried to convert it into a field goal, which would have given them the win. This brave strategy earned the respect of the fans and hockey enthusiasts alike.
#2 Loyal fan base
‘Fans’ are the lifeline of any team. They motivate and get behind the team when they are losing and celebrate with them when they put on a good show! That's what Dabang Mumbai fans showed the world at the world's biggest hockey league.
The Alphas had a loyal fan base throughout the tournament. A group regularly travelled with the team on their cruiser bikes, waving the Alphas’ flag throughout their journey. The CIL Hockey India League hope to see this loyal fan base create even more noise next season. Take a bow, guys!
#3 Youngsters boost
The Alphas retained just 3 players from last year’s squad and selected 17 new members to complete their squad. The Alphas’ management trusted the power of youth and by keeping the long-term goal in mind, selected a fairly younger squad. The average age of the Alphas’ 20-men squad that took part in the HIL was just 23.7 years!
Impressed by the youngster’s performances in the Alphas outfit, the national selectors looked hard at their squad and selected a total of 5 players from the Mumbai outfit that would go on to represent the Indian junior team.
#4 Close affinity between the players and the fans
The Alphas have always kept a good strong bond with their supporters, engaging with them on social media or engaging with them while on the field.
One such example can be when a fan tweeted asking the Dabang Mumbai custodian David Harte to meet him during the match. The gentle giant not only met him, but also clicked a picture with him and gave him an autograph after the match. A day to remember for the young fan, indeed!
#5 Engaging social media content
Social media engagement is as important for a team as their performance on the pitch, they both help in enlarging the existing fan base to a whole new level. A good social media handling team gives the fans and the players a suitable platform to interact with each other.
The Alphas were one of the most active social media accounts as they indulged in friendly banter with the other teams. They also engaged with the fans on a regular basis, which earned them extra brownie points.