SINGAPORE – Skilled soccer gamers, and even some weekend warriors, would haven’t any issues juggling a daily soccer with their ft.
However touchdown it on a 3m by 1.7m desk, curved downwards on every finish, presents a more durable proposition, and that is the distinctive problem that attracted Khairul Fahmi to teqball.
The 21-year-old nationwide footvolley (a mixture of soccer and seaside volleyball) participant, who has performed teqball for six months, mentioned: “Juggling is straightforward, however feeding the ball to your accomplice with the suitable weight and on the proper peak, after which aiming for the desk, is difficult.
“It is like a mixture of soccer, sepak takraw, and desk tennis. The curved a part of the desk, which may change the path of an incoming ball, provides one other dimension to the sport.”
Regardless of its comparatively younger age – teqball was invented in 2012 in Hungary by footballer Gabor Borsanyi, businessman Gyuri Gattyan and laptop scientist Viktor Huszar – the game has change into successful, with soccer stars like Lionel Messi, Neymar and David Beckham amongst its proponents.
The principle guidelines of the first-to-12-points, best-of-three-sets sport are that every participant or workforce has two makes an attempt to finish a profitable service, and is allowed a most of three touches to return the ball with any physique half besides the arms and arms.
The distinctive guidelines are that the ball can’t be touched by the identical physique half consecutively, and a participant or workforce can’t return the ball with the identical physique half in back-to-back performs. Additionally, in a doubles match, each gamers from the identical workforce should contact the ball earlier than it’s returned.
Amirul Iskandar, a 26-year-old who gained a soccer bronze for Singapore on the 2010 Youth Olympic Video games, mentioned: “Teqball is a fast-paced sport that trains your focus and management in each your ending and receiving.
“With smashes, drop photographs and spin concerned, it’s actually enjoyable as a result of it’s so difficult both by yourself or taking part in with a team-mate.
“I hope the game catches on and grows right here and we will get the possibility to signify Singapore in worldwide competitions.”
Since its inception in 2017, the Worldwide Federation of Teqball (Fiteq) has added 90 nationwide federations and hopes to increase that to not less than 150 by the top of 2021, with Fiteq president Huszar aiming for a spot on the Olympic programme within the close to future.
The third version of the Teqball World Championships – with singles, doubles and blended doubles occasions – featured 57 international locations when it was held in Budapest in 2019 previous to the worldwide coronavirus outbreak.
Realising the potential teqball has in a land-scarce nation like Singapore, former Lions defender R. Sasikumar has made it his mission to popularise it within the Republic, the place solely a handful have performed the game.
The 46-year-old mentioned: “That is the proper sport for us within the present coronavirus pandemic. It doesn’t require many individuals to start out a sport, and the tables are moveable and handy to stow away.
“You additionally do not need to be large and tall to be good on the teqball, which implies the average-sized Singaporean has one other alternative to be a world-class athlete.”
With a gaggle of like-minded lovers, Sasikumar is within the midst of organising the Teqball Affiliation of Singapore (TAS), a nationwide sports activities affiliation which he’ll helm. The goal is to develop the game and finally arrange a nationwide league and a nationwide workforce.
TAS committee member Jeanne Quickly, who can also be Bundesliga Worldwide’s advertising and communications supervisor, mentioned: “We’re creating this teqball neighborhood in Singapore as a result of we recognized it as one of many fastest-growing sports activities globally and we additionally imagine it has a robust enchantment to quite a lot of age teams and genders.
“We expect many Singaporeans will benefit from the sport and in the long run, we hope to see teqball as a SEA Video games sport and finally an Olympic sport.”
In April, Sasikumar and his workforce had been concerned in organising a youth exhibition occasion with the ActiveSG Soccer Academy and the Hungarian embassy on the Marina Bay Floating Platform, the place 20 doubles groups took turns to expertise the game throughout 4 tables.
After attempting it out for the primary time, Chua Teng Han, a 16-year-old from St Patrick’s Faculty, mentioned: “I’ve solely beforehand seen it on YouTube and at all times wished to attempt it out as a result of it seems to be enjoyable.
“I believe it helps me to change into higher in fundamental soccer abilities, akin to heading and passing in tight positions, in order that I will not hesitate or panic in these conditions.”
And Singaporeans can have extra entry to teqball as Sasikumar has imported 30 patented tables, most of that are positioned at 20 ActiveSG stadiums islandwide for the general public to make use of without spending a dime.
Irfan Ismail, a lecturer on the Nationwide Institute of Training, went so far as to spend $1,500 on a desk to play teqball together with his kids.
The 43-year-old mentioned: “My children love soccer they usually wished to do this distinctive sport after seeing it on-line, so I made a decision to get it for them to play with their pals as we will wheel it to a close-by park.
“It’s good for them to hone their ball management and a great way for household and pals to bond.”
If you wish to take up teqball
The Teqball Affiliation of Singapore is being arrange. There are plans to create golf equipment and a nationwide league.
Teqball tables at the moment are accessible at 20 ActiveSG stadiums islandwide for the general public to make use of without spending a dime.
The ball is a daily dimension 5 soccer. The Teq Lite teqball desk is obtainable at $1,500. E-mail Sasikumar at firstname.lastname@example.org for extra data.