Baoringdao Bodo, a young football sensation from Assam and former India under-17 skipper, cannot wait to play for the senior India team very soon but knows that there will be tough competition for a spot in the senior team.
Born to a Dimasa Kachari family in the town of Haflong, Dima Hasao, Assam, Bodo started playing football at the age of 8.
Bodo was selected for India camp for under-14 in 2013, he then captained India at under-17 level and then .went on to play for the India under-19 team.
The 21-year-old midfielder is currently with the Indian Super League (ISL) club Odisha FC for the upcoming season.
EastMojo had the opportunity to have an exclusive interview with the former India under-17 skipper. EastMojo had the opportunity to have an exclusive interview with the former India under-17 skipper Excerpts from the interview:
Q. How did you train and what have you been doing during the lockdown to maintain you fitness?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCI had been training regularly and maintaining my fitness. Also, we were given a fitness schedule from the club to keep ourselves fit. It’s a new team and a new season, so I was definitely motivated and was working really hard to keep myself fit. And not only fitness, but I also paid attention to my diet.
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Q. Apart from training, how have you spent your lockdown?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCI was home with my family, spent some quality time with them, and then I had a daily schedule visiting the gym. Stadiums were closed due to lockdown, so it was difficult, but then I played games on the PlayStation.
Q. You have captained India in the U-17 and then went on to represent India in the U-19, so any expectations for Indian senior team any soon?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCI am highly motivated to play really well, and the national team has always been a dream for me, but I have to work hard as the competition is really tough and everyone is working hard to achieve that position. I have to keep going, and hopefully, I will give my best and then someday I will be able to play for the national team, because it’s always been my dream to play for the senior India team and I have been working hard too. Being patient is the key here, so let’s see what happens.
Q. You are now with the Odisha FC, so how’s the atmosphere over there, being in the bubble?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCIt’s a new team, a new atmosphere, but I know most of the players like Vineet and Shubham and all, so it’s like quite normal for me. But, being in the bubble is really difficult at the moment as there are lots of rules and regulations from the league (ISL) which we have to follow. And it’s not only about the rules and regulations, but as an individual also we have to look after ourselves and take care of ourselves, and have to be really professional both on and off the pitch and stay focus, that’s all. Five months will be really tough (in the bubble), but we have to do it. In fact, we are looking at it in a way that we are getting to play this year amidst all this COVID. Thanks to the federation for managing to organise this league.
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Q. What are your expectations for the upcoming ISL?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCWe all are working really hard and giving our best. We have a young squad, and I feel lucky to be a part of Odhisa FC. The coach and the staff and everyone else in the club are very supportive, we help each other, and there are lots of experienced player like Steven Taylor, who is really professional. We as youngsters look up to them, and they help us a lot, they tell us what to do and what not to do, and it’s a great learning experience. I am really enjoying my team here with the team and will do our best.
Q. This time the tournament will be held behind the closed doors, without crowd and audience, so how is the feeling, how have you mentally prepared yourself for such a situation?
Baoringdao Bodo, Midfielder, Odisha FCObviously, we will be missing the fans and the audience, but it doesn’t really matter much for me because at the end of the day, we have to do our job, whether there is a fan or not and we all are very much prepared for the situation. There are a lot of matches in a short time. Like inside two-three days we have two matches, so we have to look after ourselves, especially take care of our body always, prepare for the coming challenges and matches, so that I can give my everything for the team. It’s always the team first whatever we do. I know it’s complicated now for the fans, but you guys will be watching us live on TV, but don’t worry we will give our best, and hopefully, we’ll produce a positive result. I believe in me, and my team, and in my coaches and everyone. It’s the most important thing. We have to believe in each other. Thank you.
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