NEIL Adrakar with pallbearers carry the casket of his father, Parveen Adrakar to his final resting place.

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Ba's back

Opinions / Analysis

THE Ba football team raised aloft the Inter District Championship title for the twenty fifth time.

The Men in Black beat its closest rival, Lautoka 2-1 in the final, the Blues have won the same 18 times.

The 2023 Premier League and Fiji FACT winner got beat at their own game.

With a first year coach, Arif Khan and astute Yogendra Dutt as technical partners, moulded and motivated the players in the country’s biggest footballing tournament.

And with the proverbial rallying cry ‘Ba toh Ba hai’, the team brought the best out in them.

Ba fans love their football. By the show of support in the final, so does those that call home around the world. And this is no secret.

The district has won the Inter District Championship twenty five times, more than any other team.

It’s definitely the success that brings the fans to the park, but it’s also the swag and the skills.

BA football definitively is in the pantheon of soccer’s greatest team.

Ba’s go to guy

While it takes the team to win the championship, forward Nabil Begg, with his dazzling skills and aggression was outstanding.

The next-big thing of the Fijian football, draws similar comparisons of district legend Faruk ‘Cunning Fox’ Janeman, who script into stardom for being in a company that won 6-conservative 1975-1980, IDC championship.

It is no exaggeration that Nabil, who won the Golden Ball award, has stark similarties, built, silky and has the knack of scoring goals seemingly at will as the legendary footballer.

The youngster plays with a lot confidence and his work rate is endless, he was at the end of every Ba’s every goal.

His touches had black jersey and flag clad hundreds of fans rise from the clustered seats and let out a roar.

Bookies wrong

Lautoka looked the team beat, with League and the Fiji FACT wins behind them, the bookies had predicted a win.

But football games are not won on bets, experience and likability but strategy, a sound game plan and desire.

Lautoka with some of the best players, including country’s ace goal scorer Sairusi Nalaubu were at sixes and sevens.

Football a business

Ba’s young team are a gifted group of players of similar age, who could achieve more for district football but the sport isn’t all about loyalty, but business like.

Retaining the core players would be a job first for the association, failures would stall progression.

And given the financial constraints faced, which is no secret as any lucrative offer could thwart the team from producing optimum success.

Early rumour mills Ba’s, Seaqaqa import Mohammed Fataul Raheem, who won the Golden Boot award is being eyed on by Suva and Rewa.

Raheem and others may be looking to built on their future, come the new transfer window.

Let's be mindful of profession footballers' mantra, negotiate a deal and move on.

But as history has it, Ba footballers have a ‘stay home mentality’, that is to ride out the best football years with the district.

For it is said that an athlete cannot run with money in his pocket, for they must run with hope in hearts and dreams in the head’ to make a better life.

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