Sunday, May 26, 2024

Bopanna picks 25 underprivileged kids from Assam to mentor


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New Delhi, May 2: Aimed at empowering underprivileged children, India’s top tennis player Rohan Bopanna has picked 25 such kids from the remote areas of Majuli Island and Bongaigaon in Assam, for support.
The collaborative initiative between Rohan Bopanna Tennis Academy (RBTA) and Kamal India Foundation UK will provide comprehensive tennis training to the selected kids who are aged between 9 and 11.
Around 300 kids underwent a skill and fitness assessment process and 25 were handpicked by reigning Australian Open champion Bopanna for inclusion in the programme.
The selected players will relocate to Bengaluru, where they will be provided with state-of-the-art infrastructure, a world-class tennis curriculum, experienced coaching faculty, boarding and lodging within the school campus, education, and guidance from Bopanna himself at RBTA.
Asked if there was any specific reason for picking the players from Assam, Bopanna said it was a request from one of the sponsors.
“One of the reasons was that a donor wanted kids to be selected from the North East. We thought why not? It does not matter which part of the country kids come from, it is an incredible opportunity,” Bopanna told PTI.
“We are thrilled to partner with Kamal India Foundation UK to bring this transformative opportunity to talented young individuals who may not otherwise have had access to such resources. “Through this program, we aim to not only nurture their athletic talents but also empower them with education and life skills that will shape their future,” said Bopanna, who recently became the oldest world number one on the ATP Tour.
The 44-year-old Bopanna, who is set to compete at the Paris Games, said they will keep enrolling players in the programme.
“Out of 300, we got 25. Now these will remain. The plan is to support them it till the 10 or 12th standard. We keep adding more kids to the programme. Every year we will have players from different regions. (PTI)


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