Sunday, July 09, 2017

The Coach

He was watching the dance of yellow balls. Beginners, Amateurs, semi- professionals hitting the ball in the four different courts of the arena. The varied sounds made by the racquets as players sent the ball across the net in different trajectories was music to his ears. Even closing his eyes, he could know who was playing on which court just by listening to the sounds made by racquets and movements of players. It was a symphony of sorts.  If on one court it was swift and loud, in another it was short and soft. Yellow furs bounced on the red clay at the command of the player. It was a beautiful scene. He enjoyed watching players chip and charge. He enjoyed training them more.
This was his sanctuary. Here he was playing the role of the coach. Looked up to by all for guidance. The joy and pleasure he felt while imparting what he knew to the young minds was real and sublime. He polished their ground strokes, made them swing and slide with ease. He inspired them to play unconventional game and encouraged them to try out newer shots.  Many of them preferred one-handed backhand. He didn’t need to confirm that they were the fans of the Great Man. While they worked rigorously to develop their game he also taught them to listen to their body. He was a master trainer, physio and counselor all in one for the pupils. They loved it when he was around not just to play with him but also to listen to him. Because he more often than not liked to talk about the game. His passion for tennis was infectious and ignited their minds .
Only in the arena he was at peace. Here he could breathe freely.  The strangling pressure from the broken threads of life that he keenly felt eased a bit in these clay patches. Threads as important as life itself. Each and every one of them. Wife, parents, daughter. But he constantly thought about the woman with whom he felt the connection but had let go.  He knew he won’t do anything about it and it hurt. Was he dishonest with himself?  As an answer to himself he sliced the ball sharply putting heavy topspin.  The ball like a reproach ferociously shot across and landed out of reach from the boy much to his bewilderment at this sudden, unexpected aggression.

1 comment:

maha mohamed said...
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