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A Copa America Story

By Munawar Mobin

The Copa America started towards the start of this month and ended a few days ago. Over the course of these few weeks, a lot has happened in the football world. First off, the Copa America was hosted in Argentina this year and it's a tournament where countries from South America face each other to win the prestigious cup. Kind of like a UEFA Euro for South American countries. Along with teams like Venezuela, Costa Rica, Columbia, there were powerhouses involved too, such as Uruguay and of course the infamous favourites Brazil and Argentina. What really shocked the world were the poor performances from the favourites. The Little Canary, boasting talented youngsters such as Neymar, lost out to Uruguay in penalties, managing to break a record by not scoring a single penalty. Argentina, on the other hand, lost out to Paraguay in penalties due to inconsistent football. Not even with Leo Messi on their side did the Albicelestes manage to play the proper game required to put them through.

So the semis got over without much excitement and the final was to be decided between Paraguay and Uruguay, teams with similar names but completely different styles of play and scores in the table. Uruguay played with promise all throughout the tournament with Forlan and Suarez at their disposal. Paraguay, on the other hand, managed to reach the finals too. Fun fact here is that they did not win or lose a single match. They reached the end by drawing all their games.

Not much was exchanged before the final game, and yet things seemed to have heated up. Larissa Riquelme, supermodel from Paraguay made similar promises to that of Maradona, during a world cup, in case of a victory for her team. Too bad Uruguay won then, huh? So Uruguay, with the deadly Diego Forlan and Suarez secured the cup last Monday night. Forlan flew in with a brace and Suarez helped his team seal the deal as they glided their way to an easy victory. Paraguay was broken, in the sense that their defense fell apart like dominoes whenever Uruguay had the ball.

Coach Oscar Tabarez was phenomenal in guiding his underdog team to a splendid victory. Forlan and the likes have shown the world that Uruguay is a force to be reckoned with. They've left Argentina behind in their own home soil and won their fifteenth Copa Cup and it was all thanks to Tabarez. Who cares about Mourinho when you've got managers like this one? This man single-handedly took this team, brushed away all the dirt and shaped them into well coordinated footballers. He has taken Uruguay to a world cup semi final, a Copa semi final and now to this well deserved triumph.

This is also a huge victory for footballer Forlan as it is his first major contribution to his national side ever since he came under the radar. With the World Cup in a few years, this writer can tell you that there is loads to be excited about. The underdogs aren't just underdogs anymore; Uruguay has proved to the world that with sheer determination and effort, any team can just about make it big.

In conclusion, get ready for an absolutely inspirational world cup!

Last week, our topic was Moonwalker. The piece below, while not exactly what we were looking for, still conveys a message about our attachments to pop culture. With the death of Amy Winehouse, this seemed sort of appropriate. Next week: our topic will be Firebreather. We'd love for you guys to think outside the box a little. You can take the topic to be a callsign and write a war story. Or you can talk about an actual firebreather. Or something funny like eating bombai morich on a dare. Explore different avenues. Submissions need to be sent to ds.risingstars@gmail.com before Sunday noon and the word limit is 500 words. Good luck.

Moon Walker

By Sigma Walin

Revolution! Every bit of it has become a great revolution. He stood on a dark surface where a few steps on his part would take the enchanted watching mankind to the furthest level of ecstasy. Our known world of imagination will transcend to another unknown un-tasted one. We all waited eagerly for those steps. Eventually, he rushed into sudden motion.

He stood with his back towards the camera. His bent head would not give us the full view of his face. He moved with an unlikely, stuttering grace; a contrasting harmony of statics and dynamics. Are his movements odd? May be! Because the gravity on the Moon is one-sixth of that on Earth. A sudden twitch flowed through his already writhing body. Is it a crater, he has confronted? Without bothering, he continued with his rhythmic stylish walk. He had to. For the whole world fixed eager eyes on the immortal poem his whole existence is writing on this mortal planet .The camera behind him was rolling on.

So, gliding on the surface over and over again, he went on with his moonwalk.

Now the motionless arms of the moon walker gained sudden momentum. He stretched them in front and a progressive wave made its way through him. It all seemed like a thrilling vibration. Within a second, his body squeezed unexpectedly. He stopped there. No movement followed. He stood there, still and stiff, as if he never moved an inch from that place.

"What's wrong with him?”
"Is he reacting to a muscle pull?”
“Is he in severe pain? He can't just end up like that! He can't". My heart raced through all the silly possibilities. I was too overwhelmed. But, just then he tore apart my worthless train of tensely inquisitive thoughts.
He relaxed

Next, an unprecedented jolt followed. He stood up straight with the jerk. He started walking backwards. His vigorous steps continued as perfectly as before. Not a single step misplaced. But His hands clinging to his side waved with his fingers widely spread. The silvery white gloves covering them shone in the light. He continued walking to the other end of the stage. But his feet were moving as smoothly as ever before. He was the perfect moonwalker. Nothing could make me happier.

Why did a repeat telecast of the moonwalk ache in my heart? Maybe on his death anniversary I am still unwilling to say "Goodbye, Michael Jackson” to the flawless moonwalker who is still making revolutions in my heart.



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