Kerala Blasters, the Indian Super League’s (ISL) Kochi franchise, continued to tone themselves ahead of the run up to their inaugural season of the new league by thumping Sree Kerala Varma College’s (SKVC) football team 6-0. However, on a rare occasion, it was the losing side that seemed more jubilant than the winning team.
SKVC were drafted in to play the Blasters after the management of the ISL team as they felt it was vital for their side to gain match fitness as fast as possible. In a matter of days, the boys who were drilling themselves into shape on the college grounds found themselves invited to play the likes of David James and Michael Chopra to name a few.
Having started the match as favourites, the Blasters weren’t able to breach the SKVC defense until 20 minutes on the clock when Brazilian defender Erwin Spitzner scored from a corner. That’s how the score remained until the second-half. The Sachin Tendulkar co-owned franchise then used the full depth of their squad to deploy all 27 members and eventually romped to a five goal glut in the second half.
However, what was heartening to see was the spirit of sportsmanship displayed by the Blasters’ camp as player manager David James personally arose to applaud SKVC goalkeeper Suveeth Kumar’s parry away from goal off a CS Sabeeth effort.
“I saw David James applauding my effort. He is a man who has played a World Cup and here he was praising my effort. He also had good words about my goalkeeping after the match and gave some important tips on how to avoid errors while keeping. This is the biggest reward I have received in my career,” concluded an contented Kumar post-match, to The Times of India.