An Ultimate Experience
Contributed by: Shiviksha Kaushik
While stepping into this first job of mine, my first concern was that I will reach a point of monotony (not because of any past such experiences but I had hardly seen anyone talk about their work like they live it). Though everyday here is a new fun and learning experience but Lucknow Ultimate Open has been the two of the most amazing days I have experienced so far. A total of 10 teams from the North-West Section participated in the tournament including teams from St. Stephen’s college and Ashoka University and 4 of our Project KHEL teams. The event took place on the 8th and 9th of September at Microlit Gymkhana Cricket Ground in Lucknow. Ultimate Frisbee is a self-refereed and mixed gender team sport which makes it stand out in the sports world. The sport is not about winning by hook or by crook, it is about embracing the spirit of the game. Ultimate has traditionally relied upon a spirit of sportsmanship which places the responsibility for fair play on the player. While there were innumerable such instances, there were few just caught my attention the most.
There was a little girl from one our teams who was standing on the side line and serving water to all the players while her team was on ground. Later in the day, a girl from one team got injured and did not play for the second half. After the game, as a part of their culture and spirit of the game, the entire opponent team came up to her to give her post match hi-fives! The best part of all, however, was that at the end of each match both the teams used to sit together in the circle called the spirit circle and discussed the match and gave constructive feedback to each other. What was witnessed the most was that instead of taking advantage or ignoring, the experienced players gave their time to explain the game to the newbies as points of improvement for them. All in all, if Ultimate is said to be played in the spirit of the game, then the two days at the tournament completely justified that when all of them played with their teams with utmost competitiveness and also compassion, equally for all the players on the field. Talking of team work, there was another team who had been working from the back end in making the event completely unruffled. The Project KHEL team had been preparing for the event since a month, running from one place to the other to arrange the best we can for the playing teams. On the event days too, one could see them running all around the field, serving breakfast and lunch, keeping up the score, cheering for all the teams and capturing the best moments. Needless to say that all of our hard work was paid off with all the positive feedback we got from the participants. There is nothing better than your hard work being acknowledged and so it happened. As a completely non-sports person it was an ecstatic experience. Never did I think that I would be able to develop any sort of interest in the game by just witnessing it for two days. Hopefully, I’ll get to learn more about Ultimate when time comes!