Hoop out of waste: Creativity fuels India's 15-year-old basketball international Harsh Dagar's practice during lockdown
How India international and NBA Academy recruit Harsh Dagar made a hoop for himself to practice and keep away from boredom
Adversity gives birth to creativity, goes the old adage. Harsh Dagar's story is a fitting example of that.
When he speaks, his child-like voice may not give the true impression of himself: one of India's youngest basketball international, South Asian Games gold medallist and a student of NBA Academy India.
After the nationwide lockdown was enforced due to coronavirus , Dagar, 15, returned to his home in Gurugram. Initially, the boredom would not stop – a phase that lasted for a good three weeks. He could not go outside, could not practice and suddenly, there was a huge void in his routine. It was about time something was done to bring a fresh change.
Pushed by the boredom, he along with his brother, who is also a basketball coach, decided to set up a man-made hoop for practice at his home.
But how? The shutdown was of little help as arranging for equipment to set up the hoop was difficult to procure.
"We decided to use the waste material and build our own hoop," said Dagar, while speaking to Firstpost over the phone from his home in Gurgaon.
When one hears about Dagar's humble background, one realises that creativity stems from not having access to all the resources at all times, but yet having the willingness to somehow achieve everything. His mother, who is a single parent, used to stitch clothes to run the house. For a long time, the family had rented a part of the house to guarantee a fixed monthly income, showcasing that the Dagar household knew how to create something productive out of very little. Even during the lockdown, when everything was shut, ideas were not.
So with waste materials lying at home, which included – a borrowed pole, a wooden board and an iron press borrowed from neighbours, Dagar visited a welder, who helped them manufacture a hoop. His brother and him then dug up a hole in the ground to fix the newly-created hoop. All of this was done in a day. And since then Dagar has been practicing using the hand-made hoop.
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This is Harsh Dagar, one of our NBA Academy India players from Delhi. During lockdown he has not been able to get to a basketball court so he built is own basket from scratch outside of his home. This is one dedicated young man. #fortheloveofthegame #becreative #findaway #commitment #ThisIsWhyWePlay
Dagar and his family have seen tough times and 'money' inscribed on the board reminds of the difficult days.
He was all of 11, when his school coach took him to play in one match, where his team lost, but it gave Dagar a glimpse into baksetball. The fact that his elder brother also played basketball, motivated him to take up the sport. He followed his heart and soon was picked in the second batch of the NBA Academy India where he still trains.
Since his selection, the financial burdens have lessened as the academy takes care of his studies and training now. But Dagar's acts such as this of creating a makeshift hoop, tells that he remembers the difficult days and works hard, surpassing barriers that lie in front of him, to make sure the future is bright.
Dagar would want to return to academy soon but if the homestay continues, he is making sure, he is not merely enjoying the break, but working hard to be in shape and roar back when things resume.
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