“The journey towards success starts off with a lot of struggle” and recently we got in touch with someone whose career is described through this qoute.

Odisha FC’s rock solid centre back Gaurav Bora gave us a glimpse of his footballing journey. Gaurav Bora was the silver lining in Odisha FC’s debut season. Without any futher due let’s get going.

Who has been your inspiration throughout your life?
Gaurav : My mom inspired me to be the best version of myself everyday. I have seen her work hard since my childhood and whatever I am today it’s all because of her. I try my best to make her proud everyday.

Take us through the early stages of your footballing career.
Gaurav : There was quite a bit of craze for football. The hostel where I stayed was full of football players. So it was basically a footballing environment. I was selected in my school team and then I made progress and played the big tournaments like Subroto Cup. At that time, Baichung Bhutia started a football school in Delhi.

The Director of the football school Sunil Patwal, who is a very renowned coach in Delhi asked a few boys including me to join the football school and even assured to provide scholarship to us. I joined and got very good exposure as I played in lot of tournaments. Once, I even got the opportunity to go to Netherlands and train at Feyenoord FC.

Then I got a chance to attend a trial for Pune FC and I got selected. I played two years for Pune in the I league and then FC Pune City took over the club. I played two more years at the FC Pune city academy. Then I managed to get into the reserve team. I was then loaned to Chennai city FC.

Take us through your early days at Chennai City FC.
How was the shift from North India to the South of India.
Gaurav : There was no specific feeling when I signed for them
because I just wanted to get enough play time no matter where it is.

Even then the ISL was very hyped up and like all the young players I too wanted to be a part of the Indian top flight but life unfolded it’s story in a different way and I ended up playing for Chennai City FC in the iLeague for the next 2 seasons and playing in the iLeague is a like a huge achievement, thanks to the tournament’s great history.

The support staff and everyone related to the team welcomed me with open arms and made me feel I belong here and that made my switch from North India to South India very easy.


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