A Chat with Meiraba – the little Champ

12 January 2015

Manipur the ‘power house of sports’; the youngest shuttler of the state Maisnam Meiraba Luwang has resonated the epithet with his sterling performances having played at international tournaments outside the country. The twelve year old boy has won the heart of all Manipuris.

Meiraba is the eldest son of M Romesh Luwang and M (O) Ratana Devi, Meiraba has a younger sister, Sananu Chanu.

Born on December 30 2002 at Sega Road, Khwairakpam Leikai, he is presently studying at Shishu Nistha Niketan at Class VIII, Meiraba is equally good in studies as well.

He started playing badminton at the family’s lawn with the neighbours. His father Romesh Luwang who is also a badminton coach discovered the talent in his young son at an early age. He started taking his son for practice at the indoor stadium of Manipur Badminton Association located at DM college campus.

Meiraba’s first landmark was in 2010 when he snatched the title of the 3rd Imphal West Badminton Championship in the under - 10 single boys’ category. He also bagged the runner-up title for boys double, under - 13 category, of the same tournament.

The following year Meiraba went on to win the 4th Imphal West badminton Championship in under - 13 and 15 categories in the single events. He was unstoppable with his winning spree bagging the same title under the same categories.

Meraba further climb the ladder of achievement to the State Level Championship. He received the winner’s title for under - 10 boys single and also the under - 13 boys double category in the 29th Inter District and the 55th State Level Badminton Championship 2010. And repeating the same feat in the year 2011 in the under - 13 boys double category in the 30th inter district and 56th State Badminton Championship, Meiraba was relentless with his winning performances.

Meiraba’s badminton prowess was not full stopped at the district and state level. He went ahead to the National Level. Taking part under 13 boys double in the ‘Oil India Ltd’ All India Ranking Badminton Tournament in the year 2013 at Guwahati under the aegis of Badminton Association of India, Meira emerged as a winner.

In the 27th Sub- Junior National Badminton Championship 2013 which was held at Cuttack under BAI from November 10 to 16, Meiraba yet again won the boys under - 13 single categories. And in the doubles he clenched the runner-up title.

Meiraba reached another height at the International Level in the year 2013. He participated in the under - 10 boys’ singles and 13 boys’ doubles and mixed doubles at the Isreal Junior International from March 14 to 16 this year at Rishon, Le Zion.

Fittingly the Badminton Association of India declared Meiraba is at the newest top rank for under - 13 boys singles and doubles in January 7 this year.

Needless to mention that Meiraba’s latest achievement was at the Aros Junior Cup 2014 International Badminton youth tournament, which was held at Viby. J. Denmark from April 18 to 20. He represented in the singles and doubles event and emerged titleholder. In the single event under - 14 categories at 59th National School Badminton Championship, held at Agra, UP from April 26 to 30, Meiraba seized the Championship title easily.

Meiraba is now set to undergo training at the TATA Prakash Padukan Badminton Academy which is located at Bangalore. The training will help Meiraba to move forward and excel.

IFP was fortunate to have a quick chat with Meiraba, on the day ahead of his departure to Bangalore. We chatted briefly as we could sense his restlessness for he wanted to spend more time with his family and friends. So we did not confine him.

During the chat Meiraba said he is looking forward to learn more from the Academy at Bangalore. He liked the Denmark journey most, besides the tournament; he said the people of Denmark are really nice. The people of Denmark are honest and focussed with their work. Hmm…, such an observation from a 12 year boy, we thought, but this was Meiraba speaking to us.

Meiraba loves to eat Chilly Chicken and he can devour it without stopping. He gave us a laugh with the sentence. Besides Badminton he love to play carom and can spend good time playing games on the I-Pad. Like most of the children, our little champ loves to read Tinkle comics. He confessed that he was a little uneasy when he played the first international match at Israil. However, he said, that uneasiness was gone when he played in Denmark recently. Meiraba would not sit down with us during the whole conversation. He would run from one place to another, mingling with his cousins and other family members. Boy, he knew he is going to miss the family when he is away from the family. Yet, his passion to reach greater height in the game has just started to take a leap. We left wishing him all the best.

About IFP

Imphal Free Press is a widely circulated English daily published in Manipur, North-East India. Started in 1996, it has relocated its head office from Sega Road, Imphal to Palace Gate, Imphal.

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