Masters Hoopsters Staying Connected

These Indian Masters Hoopsters are a tight-knit group of 10-12 school and college friends bonded by a shared passion for basketball.

With a diverse background in the sport, the players have represented various states, universities, and even professional teams in India. The team encompasses individuals ranging from the age group of 45 plus to the 55 plus category, united by the love for the game and the camaraderie it brings.

Outside of basketball, the athletes are professionals in various fields, including the corporate world, entrepreneurship, businessman, education as teachers and professors, and coaching sports in schools and colleges. Despite the different careers, basketball serves as a common thread that keeps us connected and brings joy to our lives.

What made you want to create a basketball team?

Our desire to create a basketball team stemmed from our shared passion for the game and the strong bonds forged during our school and college playing years. Basketball has always been more than just a sport for us; it’s a means of staying connected, reliving memories, and fostering camaraderie among old friends.

How important is travelling and exploring new places to your team?

Travelling and exploring new places are essential parts of our team’s journey. When we join tournaments like the “Masters Tournament” worldwide, it’s more than just about playing basketball. It’s about exploring diverse cultures, meeting new friends, and making unforgettable memories. Our team has had the pleasure of participating in various tournaments around the globe, including the Turin Master Games in Italy, the Asia Pacific Master Games in Penang, Malaysia, and the Master Games tournament in Phuket, Thailand, along Master games events held in India.

What has been your favorite trip/sporting memory?

Our favourite sporting memory undoubtedly revolves around our participation in the Masters games across different countries. Each trip holds a special place in our hearts as we get to travel together as a team, compete against various opponents, and enjoy shared experiences like meals and drinks. These trips serve as fantastic bonding opportunities, allowing us to establish stronger connections with teammates and members of other teams alike. Exploring the vibrant streets, savouring local cuisines, and immersing ourselves in the rich history and architecture of each city are moments we all always treasure.

How important is playing sports to your physical and mental health?

Playing sports is not just a hobby for us; it’s an essential aspect of our lives that significantly impacts our physical and mental health. Engaging in basketball serves as a crucial outlet for stress relief, allowing us to channel our energy into something positive and constructive. The physical exertion involved in the game helps us stay fit, improving our health, strength, and agility. Moreover, sports contribute to a heightened sense of well-being, lifting our mood and reducing anxiety or depression.

How has sport helped you build your friendships and camaraderie?

Sport has been key in building strong friendships and camaraderie among us. Through the ups and downs of games, we have formed unbreakable bonds, shared many laughs, and supported each other both on and off the court. It’s a connection that lasts a lifetime.

What would your advice be to anyone considering starting a sport in later life?

For anyone thinking about taking up a sport later in life, my advice is simple: dive in with enthusiasm. Regardless of age, sports bring numerous benefits, from better physical health to stronger social connections and personal development. It’s not just about exercise; it’s also a fantastic stress reliever and source of enjoyment. So, don’t hesitate to give it a try and discover the many joys that sports can bring.

What are you looking forward to in attending the IMGA Masters Games in Cleveland?

We are looking forward to participating in the IMGA Masters Games in Cleveland. We are excited about the opportunity to compete against teams from across the globe. Beyond the thrill of the games, we are looking forward to experiencing the local culture, spending quality time together with our team, and strengthening the bonds of friendship that basketball has brought us. Additionally, we are also excited about the prospect of post-game holidays with our team and family members, as well as reconnecting with friends in that part of the world.

Cleveland is in full swing preparing for the next Masters Games taking place July 12-21, 2024. Registration closes June 12, 2024.

Article courtesy of International Masters Games Association (IMGA), for more information visit https://imga.ch/