Watch Out!
Student Media
Body of IITR
About Guide Get Involved


In Conversation With The Inter IIT Sports Contingent

December 19, 2019

Football (Shubham Kumar - Team Captain)

WO: How is the preparation this time different from the past years?

Shubham: Well we have had a lot of our senior players graduated this year. That has led to around 8-9 fresh players in the squad. Accordingly, we have played a lot of internal practice matches and to back it up, we had planned to participate in a few practice tournaments. We went to 2 tournaments but unfortunately both were washed out. So the overall exposure is less but the new members are highly motivated to give their best. Since, the setup for the whole squad has changed we have had to adapt out training and strategies accordingly.

WO: So how long did the team actually prepare for? Did preparations begin after the end-sems or before that?

Shubham: Preparation begins from the first day of the semester. You try and identify the positions that are vacant and then you have members from the bench and times new players who step up a their game and begin to take over. Steadily, we build our strategies with our minds first set on Udghosh which could have been a great opportunity to gain exposure had it not been washed out. But yes, for the 15 days after the end sems we have left the setup of the team unchanged with only minor changes here and there and we hope it pays off.

WO: Who according to you are the toughest competitions in the tournament?

Shubham: Well personally I fell that IIT-Bombay provide the toughest competition on the field. They make you run and press really hard forcing you to commit mistakes. Fortunately we beat the last year and we hope to do that this year as well. IIt-BHU too has a wonderful team and also IIT-Delhi who beat us in the finals last year. I really hope we get to play them again this time.

WO: Given the new additions to the squad, how would you rate your chances at this Inter IIT?

Shubham: Well I feel that although the players are new, they are also really skilled. Like not just the playing 11 but also the bench is really strong and these guys fit very well with the playing 11. We have a really strong team such that each player can play in any position. So yeah, I think we have a really good shot at bagging a Gold.

Badminton (Abhinav Gupta)


WO: Any major changes in the badminton contingent this time around?

Abhinav: We don’t have any first years joining us this time but we have 4 players who have been playing at the Inter IITs for the last 3 years. So we have a lot of experience on our side. There aren’t any major changes from what it was last year just the amount of time we spent preparing for it.

WO: Could you describe what your training schedule was like?

Abhinav: We have really stretched out our training sessions with the morning session lasting for 2.5 hours and the evening session being extended to 2 and sometimes even 3 hours. Our preparation this time is really at the peak.

WO: Did your training times match with the times that the matches are supposed to be scheduled?

Abhinav: No, the times for the matches will be completely random, but that really doesn’t matter. Our fitness and preparation is at the peak and we are ready to face anything that is thrown our way.

WO: So what are your expectations headed into the tournament?

Abhinav: Our expectations and beliefs for the badminton team are obviously quite high this year. We have put in a lot of effort in both on and off the court training, the whole contingent has. So our fingers are crossed and we all hope for the best.

Cricket Team (Pranjal Bajpai - Captain)


WO: How are your preparations this year different from the last few years?

Pranjal: Our team is very different this year than what it has been in the past. We have 8 people who’ll be playing at the Inter IIT for the first time. So, you can say that we have a fairly inexperienced team but our practice has sure been better than last year. We have had plenty of practice matches and we have performed much better than what anyone expected.

WO: How many practice tournaments have you been to leading up to this?

Pranjal: We played at Sangram and travelled to Udghosh (it was washed out). But our performance at Sangram was amazing with us bagging a Gold.

WO: Are there any freshers that have made it to the squad?

Pranjal: Yes, we have one kid from the first year joining us in the squad.

WO: Which team do you think is the team to look out for?

Pranjal: Well, our arch-rivals are definitely IIT-Delhi and we are really looking forward to beating them.

WO: What are your expectations heading into the tournament, both from yourself and from the team?

Pranjal: We definitely hope to bad Gold this time. We have managed to come very close in the past year, especially in 2017 where we bagged a Silver. But given the effort that the squad has put in this year, we have our sight set on Gold.

Chess (Vivek)


WO: This is the first time that chess has been included in the Inter IITs. How have you prepared for the tournament?

Vivek: This time we have some additional pressure since we have to try and get the GC for the college. So we have had to prepare harder. Since its inclusion at the Inter IIT we have also had a coach come in to help the team. With the help of the coach we have put in a lot of effort and hope that we can bag a medal in our first tournament.

WO: Have you been to any practice tournaments to get some exposure?

Vivek: No, we haven’t been to any practice tournaments but we did organise a practice tournament within the campus where we called known players from Dehradun. So that helped the team get some exposure.

WO: How do you rate the performance of the team headed into the Inter IITs?

Vivek: The team performed well in the practice tournaments and I think it is safe to say that after the coaching sessions the performance of all the members has improved significantly. We hope that this improvement will show in our performance at the tournament.

Hockey (Shubham Tripathi)


WO: How are the preparations this year different from that in the past?

Shubham: All the team members have been very regular in disciplined in preparing for the tournament. I and all the other fourth years have found time for the team despite everyone being busy with their placements. All of this has helped us to really start playing as a team.

WO: So do you have any new players in the squad?

Shubham: This year I guess around 7-8 players are new in the squad with an M.Tech student(who is a former player of IIT-Delhi) joining us this time.

WO: Who according to you are our top rivals in Hockey?

Shubham: According to me our top rivals are IIT-Delhi, IIT-BHU and IIT-Madras and we look forward to playing them all.

WO: So what are your expectations heading into the tournament?

Shubham: We have a very good team and all the players are very motivated to do well. So we expect nothing less than bagging a gold as we did last year and defending the championship.

Basketball (Medhavi Jain )


WO: How have the preparations this year been different from that in the past?

Medhavi: Since the team has changed a lot(we have many new players) we have had to train a little differently. The fourth yearites were very busy because of their placements but still were very regular and supportive to us. So although the way we train hasn’t changed a lot, the inclusion of the new players has led to a lot of tactical changes.

WO: Does the team have any non-UG students?

Medhavi: We had a senior from M.Tech in the girls team last year who has since left the team because of a semester exchange. We also have a senior doing his PhD who is part of the boys team.

WO: How has the performance of the team been leading up to the Inter IIT?

Medhavi: We went to Udghosh but our performance there wasn’t that good but we had won the event the year before that. Since the team is new, we have tried to go to different tournaments to gain more exposure to perform better at the Inter IIT.

WO: What are your expectations from the Basketball team heading into this tournament?

Medhavi: We have our fingers crossed and hope to give our best, that’s all.

Athletics (Ajay )


WO: You have a very large contingent for athletics. How do you manage your preparations?

Ajay: Well it’s not actually that big if you compare it to the bast years, maybe compared to other sports but 28 members for all the different events that fall under athletics is not that big. We had 24 members in the contingent last year too! The athletics team prepares as a unit with specific training requirements also matching for a few events. We have excellent coaches who make sure that the students are well prepared and also that we stay disciplined.

WO: What have you guys done differently this year?

Ajay: Well we have had a lot of training sessions and we felt that the last time we only focused on our strength and not technique. This time the major focus of the training sessions has been on the technique. The coach has made us understand the importance of finding the right balance of strength and technique and I think that has made us improve a lot.

WO: How has the performance been leading up to the Inter IITs?

Ajay: Everyone has performed really well in the practices and now we just have to do the same in the Inter IIT.

WO: YOur expectations headed into the tournament?

Ajay: The expectations are really high. We hope to perform our best in every event and win as many events as possible. Hopefully we will bring the GC to IITR this year!

Squash (Sparsh Jain - Captain)


WO: How has the preparation this year different from the past years?

Sparsh: As students of the game, we have tried our best to prepare ourselves with all members of Squash-IITR pitching in with their inputs on our game. The lack of a Coach continues to hurt us though. We had a coach last year who used to visit us on a fortnightly basis but even that was not provided this year. One can only learn so much by watching videos and especially in the case of complex technical games as Squash, it is absolutely necessary to have a good coach behind you and we have had to make do without one.

WO: Squash is played in a very constricted environment. Are there any chances of injury and what are your plans to deal with them?

Sparsh: The sport is prone to injury with all players leaving their hearts out on the court. It requires a great technical know how in order to avoid major injuries and the lack of a coach really hurts us there. We have tried to study up on various post-match cool down techniques along with a few everyday treatments for knee injuries and hamstring injuries, but yes these are a part of the sport and we’ll try our best to fight through them.

WO: So who are your top rivals at the Inter IITs?

Sparsh: Well personally speaking I think IIT-Delhi are the toughest rivals and they did beat us last year. We do look forward to playing them this time.

WO: What are your expectations from the tournament?

Sparsh: Well preparing on our own without a coach has been a bit of a set back but we still feel very confident in ourselves and hope to perform at the highest possible level.

Lawn Tennis


WO: How are the preparations this time different from the last time?

Tennis: I think this time the preparations are a lot better than the previous years. We even had some players from Allahabad come in to train with us, some top ranked players. So this has obviously provided us with a lot of exposure.

WO: Any changes in the squad?

Tennis: There are two of us who have played at the Inter IITs before. The newcomers are really strong players too, so I think we have improved a lot as a squad.

WO: So what are your expectations headed into the tournament?

Tennis: Well we will go for gold. Hopefully IITR will be able to lift the GC this time too.



WO: How has the preparation this time been different from the past years?

Volly: As the squad changes so does the preparation. The coach obviously knows what is best for the team and is able to make changes keeping the strengths and weaknesses of each player in mind. There are a lot of such variables like strength, stamina and overall fitness. So yes the preparation has adapted to the squad.

WO: Given that volleyball is an outdoor sport, do the weather conditions play a big role in the gameplay?

Volly: Ofcourse. In fact we were just checking the weather forecasts for the tournament. More or less the conditions are similar to Roorkee and we have our fingers crossed for playable wind conditions.

WO: Have you been to any practice tournaments?

Volly: We did go to Udghosh but as everyone knows it was washed out.

WO: What are your expectations from the tournament?

Volly: We hope to give our best and will definitely aim for gold.

Weightlifting (Jogesh Kumar)


WO: You have been part of the squad for a long time now. How has your preparation this time been different?

Jogesh: Well me and a few other medal winners from the last year have entered our final year and were unable to give full time to the practices. We aimed to maintain our general fitness levels throughout the year with real weight practice beginning only last month. Apart from that the whole squad is new and they have prepared extremely hard for the entire duration of the semester.

WO: How many hours do you put in the gym?

Jogesh: Well we train 6 days a week for 3 hours a day and on the week-ends we also have morning sessions. 80-90% of our focus is on gaining strength. In order to do so we lift 80-90% of the competition weight in each practice session.

WO: Any changes to the contingent?

Jogesh: Well we have 2 freshers joining us this time. There is a student doing his PhD who is part of the squad for the first time.

WO: What are your expectations from the Inter IIT?

Jogesh: We are the defending champions and that is what we are aiming for. The team is new but they are highly motivated and we look forward to repeating our performance last year.