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This Bengaluru NGO is out to encourage wheelchair cricket in a big way

While we celebrate the Men in Blue putting up their best show at World Cup Cricket, let's turn the spotlight on Bengaluru's Divyaang Myithri Sports Academy. Founded by two wheelchair cricketers, the academy is helping other wheelchair players pursue the game.

Cricket was always close to Sagar Gowda and Harish Kumar NB's heart. A childhood passion, they always dreamed of taking it up in a big way and playing for India. Thanks to the Divyaang Myithri Sports Academy, that is finally coming true. Both these youngsters are representing India at international wheelchair cricket matches and doing well.

Among the co-founders of the academy is Shivprasad S. He is the vice-captain of the Indian wheelchair cricket team and aims to encourage more players like Sagar and Harish.

There are many talented youngsters who want to make it big in sports but don't get the right training or the platform to showcase their talents. The government does not help us, leaving us to find sponsors and manage funds. We offer free training and many youngsters have proved their talent at various matches and there is even more to come. -Shivprasad S, Co-founder, Divyaang Myithri Sports Academy

Sagar, who is from Bengaluru, is an amputee. He lost his leg in an accident and thought he would never be able to play a sport again. "I came to know about DMSA after watching a show on them on TV and tried to get in touch with them, says Sagar. That decision changed his life. "I have been a part of DMSA since last two years and I am thankful to them for helping me chase my dreams. Sagar has played for India in international and national matches.

Harish, who started using a wheelchair as a child, never allowed disability to come in the way of pursuing sports. In 2018 he was at a para athletic selection camp when he came across DMSA. Since then there's been no looking back.

I have learnt so much at DMSA. Until a few years back, I did not know I could play wheelchair cricket. Personally, it has boosted my confidence and helped me a lot to grow as a person and in return, I have brought home many trophies, says Harish.

The DMSA is gearing up to host a state-level cricket tournament in a couple of months. Shivprasad is looking forward to it. "Let more talents come out and show how well they can prove themselves in spite of a disability, he says.

ALSO READ: Dilip Kumar Gowda is determined to unearth para sports talent in rural India

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