The Sporting Spirit

The immaculate bond between a sportsperson and his/her sport is like none other and always inspires all around. Our Community boasts of some of the finest Sports personalities who have done us proud, globally. PT Sports Reporter, Binaisha M. Surti, speaks with some of our gems to celebrate their special bond with the sport in which they excel…

Diana Edulji – Cricketer and Cricket Administrator

Diana Edulji, a true-blue alpha-athlete, first brought glory in the field of cricket playing for Indian Railways, progressed to becoming Captain the Women’s Indian National Cricket Team and is currently on the Committee of Administrators of the BCCI. One of the greatest woman cricketers, this accurate left arm spinner has been the recipient of the Arjuna Award, the Shiv Chattrapati Award and the Padma Shri.

Her cricketing skills were legendary since her formative years. “When I was in school I would play a lot of basketball and table tennis and represented my school at the junior level. I stayed at the Railway Colony-Badhwar Park and every Sunday I would play tennis ball cricket with the boys and that’s where I started liking the game. I played the nationals for the Bombay side and thus decided that Cricket is the game for me! We were pioneers of women’s cricket in India. Playing for India was a big honour. I was part Team India that won the first ever Test Match against West Indies in Patna.  I’ve played four World Cups and Captained in three.”

Sharing about her special bond with the game, the cricketing stalwart Diana shares, “The game has done a lot for me, giving me name and lots of recognition. Whatever I am today is due to cricket.  I always played to win, took up challenges and by the grace of God everything fell into place. Now being on the Committee of Administrators to run the BCCI, is indeed a feather in the cap for women’s cricket and I am glad to contribute and give back in my own way.”


Rayomand Banajee – Karting and Formula Car Racer

Rayomand Banajee is a master-karter and looks to high-end cars to satiate his speed-for-speed! The thrill he felt while driving and facing various challenges, shaped his brilliant career. Winner of eight National Titles (Six in Karting and Two in Formula Cars), and a close second in Asia (Rotax Karting, 2007), Rayomand represented India in two World Finals and later came 2nd for Team India in the Taiwan Auto Gymkhana and Podiums in six different motorsport disciplines. The fascination for high end vehicles began for him very early on. On having a great relationship with the sport, he explained “I have won everything anyone would have wanted to in India and for that I am grateful to the sport. Due to my passion, I started an academy and a team as I wanted to prepare gen-next of racers and groom them to become champions. Thus started the ‘Rayo Racing Team’ and the ‘Rayo Racing Academy’. Notable racer, Jehan Daruvala, is a product of Rayo Racing!”


Kyra Shroff – Tennis Champ

Touted as the next big star, dynamic youngster Kyra Shroff has taken the tennis arena by storm. Her commitment and resilience won her two silver medals for India at the Commonwealth Youth Games (2008). She has led the Indian team at the prestigious Fed Cup and represented India at the Jr. Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon.  “Tennis has given me a lot. I’m so grateful and feel privileged to be able to do what I love. Having played tennis for the last 19 years, I still get goose bumps while winning a match point and cannot forget the feeling when a game goes into the final set… Ultimately, the best feeling is when your friends and family are in the stadium cheering you on!”


Zubin Taraporewalla – Table Tennis Champ

Having played Table Tennis (TT) for 16 years, Zubin Taraporewalla, the latest sporting sensation of our community, continues to shine. He has won bronze medals at the All India Inter Institution 2013-14 and the All India Inter University 2010-11, as also at the All India Inter University 2012-13, followed by a gold and silver at the West Zone Championships in Nagpur, 2016-17; and two golds (singles and doubles) during the All India Civil Services 2017-18, Haryana. “I enjoyed playing a lot of TT and realized by age 13, I wanted to pursue it as a career option. TT is very special to me, my whole life revolves around the game. I invest five hours daily in practice.”


Aban Confectioner – Basketball Champ

Kolkata’s Aban Confectioner wowed Basketball circuit as a youngster, captaining the West Bengal Junior Team for three years in succession and later leading the Senior West Bengal team for two years. She continues to shine at age 56 for the Kolkata Parsee Club, setting the tone with ample stamina, mental toughness, perfect skills and confidence on the court. Aban was Vice-Captain at the pre-Asian tournament in Pune and has participated in a training camp as part of Team India.

Aban shares “Basketball for women is encouraged at the Kolkata Parsee Club and watching my mother play basketball, automatically made me fall in love with the sport and it became a part of my life. It’s a very special sport and has given me a lot. I am still very much part of the Club team and chip in wherever necessary. It’s a great feeling when my son and daughter are also playing in the same side!


Parsi Times wishes all our sports personalities and enthusiasts Sal Mubarak! May your dedication and contribution lead by example and set the path for our youth and encourage them to pursue their dream and excel in their passion!    

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