For Adhika Bhosale, being associated with Rebels FC's residential academy has been an eye-opener
One of the mainstays in the Rebels FC side during the recently concluded Karnataka Women's League, Adhika Bhosale is just one example of what our girls can do when provided with the right opportunities.
21-year-old Adhika Bhosale was a part of the Rebels FC women's side that participated in the Karnataka Women's League (KWL) a month or so back. One of the most dependable players in the side, the left-winger turned central midfielder has been a breath of fresh air in a young team that eventually finished 7th in the league table, but put out solid displays throughout the campaign.
Having been at the Rebels FC academy in Yelahanka since its initiation in 2020, Adhika feels that the mix between those enrolled in the educational curriculum and those like her who opted to stay and train there during their time with the club helps in the exchange of ideas and perspectives in a healthy manner.
Hailing from Kolhapur in Maharashtra, Adhika has previously played in the Indian Women's League (IWL) qualifiers with Kolhapur City. She is also a regular fixture in her university team. Even then, joining a residential academy in distant Bangalore was kind of a gamble for her, but one which she is happy she took. "This was the first time I was alone in a city outside of Maharashtra for such a long time. Overall it was a great learning experience, especially because of the camaraderie that all the players and coaches in the academy share," she explains.
Although she is currently back home in Kolhapur and taking a well-deserved break from football, she already has one eye on the upcoming IWL which has now been postponed again owing to rising Covid cases. "The KWL matches gave us a platform to impress scouts from IWL teams who are looking to sign players. It was also great to be part of such a young team that has so much talent in its ranks," she says in a seemingly typical, assured voice.
The youngster started playing football when she was in the 8th standard for her school team. In her own words, she or her friends did not have any knowledge of the game but enjoyed playing it. "To be honest, our school team wasn't that good and we even played the first few games in our school uniforms. Then, by the time we were in the 11th standard, our coach taught us the technical and tactical sides of the game and we got better," she summarizes.
She isn't a novice when it comes to playing in important competitions either. In 2018, when Kolhapur City played the IWL qualifiers from Maharashtra and eventually entered the tournament proper, she featured in all the games. "The IWL was held in Ludhiana that season and there were quite a few senior players brought in after the qualifiers. Since I was still very young and inexperienced, I didn't feature much in the IWL but just being at such a big event with the team was a great experience," she gushes. Thereafter, she continued playing for her university and district sides and has also played at the nationals.
But how did she join Rebels FC in Bangalore? "I come from a normal middle-class family and my parents were averse to the idea of me taking up football as a profession. Instead, they wanted me to take up a job with a stable income. It was then that I came across a post on Instagram about the Rebels FC trials in Bangalore. One of my seniors in Kolhapur also motivated me to register for the trials and try out my luck. Fortunately I did and that is how I ended up at their residential academy," she explains with a beaming smile.
Although her contract with the club is almost over, Adhika would love the opportunity of playing another season with Rebels. "My family wants me to settle down with a job but if given a chance, I would love to continue playing and see how far I can go. The past year has opened my eyes towards how a professional club and league operates and the experience of playing in Bangalore with Rebels FC is something that has turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life," she signs off.
More power to you Adhika. May you achieve all that you set out to in life.