We Love Balls
By The Alien4mEarth
Bangladesh has had its share of waving flags and cricket craziness. But considering the lack of a *functioning* national team for both sports (ahem), maybe it's time we tried something different... This is where basketball comes in. It's cheap, easy to learn, and can be played with half the people you would need for a football or cricket game. Basketball is already very popular at the school level, with almost every major school having basketball teams for both boys and girls. To the missionary schools like SFX Green Herald and St. Gregory's, the sport is something of a tradition. It was they who first started playing basketball in Dhaka, long before it spread to the masses. They've still kept up the spirit, hosting regular tournaments and producing players who eventually go on to play for the national team (yes, we do have one). A women's national basketball team has also been put into action last year, and they've shown promise by comprehensively winning a series against the visiting Tripura team. The men's team participated in the SA Games earlier this year. They put up some decent performances before finally crashing out to Afghanistan.
Even though basketball is played professionally in the country, it remains primarily a sport that is popular among the youth. Very few choose to keep it up till the highest level. Indeed, basketball is a demanding game, requiring not only physical fitness, but also commitment. But for those who are just looking to play for fun, there are plenty of options to pick from:
Abahani Indoor Gymnasium in Dhanmondi runs basketball training classes six days a week. It's great if you're a beginner and want to learn the game. Amazon Club in Gulshan has similar classes for youngsters and it's a good way to find like-minded people to play with. Gulshan Youth Club (behind Wonderland) and Baridhara DOHS are also good places for playing basketball. There are tournaments held there regularly. The place provides a nice environment if you bring a ball and a couple of friends. The Gymnasium at ISD is also a major venue on the youth basketball scene. They routinely host tournaments, which are sometimes open to players from outside the school. Besides the 5-on-5 matches, they also have other events like the Shooting Stars, 3-point contest, and the Skills Challenge.
Besides these usual places to play, you could also take up basketball at school. Most schools nowadays have a hoop, at least, if not a court. Playing for a school team is usually more rewarding than playing for a private team. The interschool tournaments tend to be well-publicised and better managed than many of the privately organised ones. The Mother Dolores Memorial Basketball tournament held annually at the SFX Green Herald School is one example of just how big and exciting it can get.
But Dhaka's love for basketball doesn't end here. Popular interest has led to many private teams being formed, some of them having quite a number of fans. Teams like Dhumketu and Wildcats are big names that have huge crowd following at tournaments.
Of course, it's not all about the game, either. Big Bang Ballers is a group of dedicated players that seeks to 'make a difference through basketball.' They hold charity events, volunteer to help repair neglected basketball courts, and generally try to popularise the game. Through the sport, they try to bring young people together so they can help take the joy of basketball to less privileged ones as well.
5 for Fairness is another such group in Bangladesh. It is a basketball program for girls living in refugee camps around the country. Says the founder Petar Rustic “...by playing organised sport, they learn important life skills like working together and respecting each other.” Indeed, those are skills that we could all do within our lives, and more so in the country. So bug that friend to get off the computer and put on those sneakers. Who knows, maybe one day, we'll actually have a national team worth being proud of.
Last week's topic was Five Superpowers and Why They Would Suck. We expected people to actually put down the superpowers using basic logic and science. Unfortunately, this write-up was one of the only articles that was written that way. This week's topic is Miles to Go Before I Sleep. However, we are also including the topic for next, because it is more in the vein of reporting. We ask the readers to go out and interview anyone who makes a living off of the street; beggars, rickshaw pullers, hawkers, etc. To validate your article, please include a picture of the person being interviewed. The articles and interviews have to be written within 600 words. Articles for this week must be handed in by 12 AM Saturday. Remember, this week it's Miles to Go Before I Sleep
Want to be a superhero?
By Maofic Farhan Karin
Watching superhero cartoons, movies and reading comic books is an obvious part of growing up. And who wouldn't want to become Superman, Spiderman or Batman? Sure, some powers seem great, but those abilities don't really work out in real life. Let's find out what would really happen if we did have super powers.
But just like super speed, the ability to fly experiences dilemmas of air resistance and pressure. Unlike Superman, you would have to strictly stay close to the ground or else the changes in air pressure will destroy you.
It's amazing how things actually work in reality. So would you really want to become a superhero and have the awesome abilities they do? Ahem, I think I'd rather sit back home and enjoy my life with my mere human powers.
| Issues | The Daily Star Home|
© 2010 The Daily Star