Manorama Club Award: G-11 epitomises Palakkad's fighting spirit

G-11 Recreation Club memebers during a training session. Photo: Manorama

The Palakkad-based G-11 (Group of Eleven) Recreation Club, one of the six final contenders for the Manorama Sports Club Award 2020-21, was established in 2009 by a group of youngsters. The glue that bound them together was their passion for sports. Today, G-11 is a breeding ground for future stars in the disciplines of badminton and tug-of-war.  G-11 was formed by a group of badminton enthusiasts residing in the vicinity of Kotta Maithanam in the heart of Palakkad town.  As they did not want to limit the club's activities to the racket sport, the club officials decided to try their hand at the ancient game of tug of war. 

In fact, G-11 was pulled towards the rope-pulling game unexpectedly. The idea struck the patrons of the club in 2016 after some of them attended the launch of the Palakkad District Tug of War Association.  Subsequently, the club identified a group of youngsters and started teaching them the nuances of the sport. Within a year, many of them represented the Palakkad district in state-level age-group championships and won laurels.  Over the years, the club has produced 65 players who won medals at state and national-level tournaments.  

One of the academy's major achievements was that it could attract lots of aspiring female tug-of-war players to its fold. The club' total strength is 130 and a majority of the members are young girls. The club's sincere and dedicated efforts to popularise a game that is not as glamorous as football or cricket in the region need to be appreciated. 

Camps and training programmes organised by G-11 are held at the Mercy College ground at Pallipuram.  "Recently, we completed the construction of a wooden badminton court. Our next target is setting up modern tug-of-war facilities for providing professional training to the children," said club president Deepak Ramachandran.  The other office-bearers of the G-11 are secretary Telin Thampi and treasurer Joby Payoor.  

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