What Was The Turning Point For Sunil Chhetri? His Father Narrates

Watch Sunil Chhetri’s father KB Chhetri speak about the turning point in the Indian football captain’s career.

2 min read

Video Editor: Mohd Irshad Alam

Skipper Sunil Chhetri scored a brace in his 100th international game as Jeje Lalpekhlua also got on the score sheet to help India beat Kenya 3-0 and seal a place in the final of the Intercontinental Cup on a rain-soaked Monday night at the Mumbai Football Arena.

After a barren first half which saw chances few and far between due to torrential downpour, Chhetri (68th minute penalty, 90+1) won and converted a penalty before adding to his tally in the added time during the second half with a delicate chip past the goalkeeper to round off the victory in front of 9,000 odd-spectators.

On either side of Chhetri's landmark double, Jeje (71st) made it 2-0 as India bagged two wins in as many games and moved to six points.

While speaking to The Quint, ahead of Sunil Chhetri’s 100th match, the skipper’s father KB Chhetri expressed that he had seen the talent in his son when he was just four or five years old.

When he was four or five years old. I saw a talent that I had never seen in our neighbourhood. I enjoyed playing with him. My wife and I honed Sunil’s talent, because both of us were enthusiastic about football. We played football during our childhood.
KB Chhetri

KB Chhetri spoke about how the 2000 Durand Cup was the turning point for the skipper’s career.

In the month of September or October, Sunil played for City FC in the Durand Cup in Delhi. City FC won three matches. Sunil scored more than 70 percent of the goals scored by his team. They beat an Army and a BSF team. The club officials of Mohun Bagan, East Bengal and some Goan clubs were watching Sunil. He was 15-16 years old at that time. From that event, he developed a huge interest for football. I had received a message from a friend of mine saying ‘Your son is among the prize winners for the most promising young players of India’. At that time, the scouts of Mohun Bagan sent a letter to Sunil asking him to join the club on a three-year contract.
KB Chhetri

(With inputs from IANS)

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