Puneri Paltan’s Monu keen to make his mark in Pro Kabaddi
Puneri Paltan’s newest discovery Monu has some very large footsteps to follow in – those of his uncle, Surinder, a Kabaddi player who had a big influence on him taking up the sport of Kabaddi and ensuring he excelled at the sport.
Surinder used to take Monu along for his practice sessions when he was just 10 years old. ‘This was my first acquaintance with Kabaddi and I never looked back from there. My uncle was the source of inspiration and it is because of him that I have continued Kabaddi and chosen it as a career,” narrates Monu.
He got hooked to the game and started practising the game with his uncle and other players. He was impressive right from the start of his playing days, and people around Sonipat knew that there was something special about this kid, and knew that he would go on to become a great player.
He went on to play for Air India at the junior level, impressing many ProKabaddi franchises. But it was through Ashok Shinde’s experienced eyes that saw the potential in Monu and selected him to play for Puneri Paltan.
The 19-year-old also credits his training day at SAI in Gandhinagar by saying, “The coaches at SAI have helped me sharpen my skills and tactics.”
Importance of gaining and maintaining fitness
Monu believes that once the skill is acquired, it’s the number of practice hours that keeps him going on and on. “We have our fitness session in the morning for 2 hours and then evening we have mat practice sessions,” he said.
“In the fitness sessions, we concentrate on building stamina, agility and on core and strength conditioning. In mat practice, we concentrate on our game and how we can better our skills,” he added.
On being asked which is more difficult – defending or ride, he reiterates that in Kabaddi – a player has to know how to raid as well as the defence to support his team. “Since I am primarily a raider, I find raiding easy however I contribute to defence as a support since I am in the chain with a defender.”
On head coach new coach Ashan Kumar & 2018 Asian Games
Monu also spoke highly about Puneri Paltan’s new coach Ashan Kumar and he understands what exactly team’s trouble in the game is and helps swim them through it. “It is very important to for a coach to understand the exact pain points and troubles of a player and help him overcome it. He explains us our mistakes to us very patiently.
The Puneri Paltan raider also believes that India’s Asian Games defeat to Iran is a primary example of kabaddi is getting more competitive. “Until the last Asian Games, India had a monopoly in Kabaddi however now other countries are becoming a force to reckon with which is good for a sport. I will say it’s a healthy competition now in Kabaddi.”
Proving his worth
Though he didn’t get much playing time last season, this season he wants to ensure that he is selected in the starting 7 and play an important role in the team’s victory journey.
Monu has a long way to go, but his recent valiant raids and performance in season 6 proves that he has plenty of potentials to make a name for himself, just like his uncle Surinder.
Favourite Movie – Bahubali
Favourite actress – Disha Patani
Favourite cheat meal – Rasgulla
Favourite song – Dilber Dilber
Best friend in Punari Paltans – Sandeep Narwal
Role model – Sandeep Narwal