Q&A with Emanuel Khokhar - National U19 player and honours student

Q: Tell us about how you got started in cricket?

A: I was about 3-4 years old when my father had introduced me to the game of cricket. I still remember that moment quite vividly; I had just met Coach Derek and he asked me if I knew what cricket is or if i knew how to bat or bowl. Since i was at such a tender age, I wasn't exposed to cricket as of yet and the only sport I related the bat and ball to was baseball. After the moment where Coach Derek cleared the fog, I fell instantly in love with the sport and never looked back.

Q: What is your greatest cricketing memory to date?

A: There's been so many great memories, but if i had to choose one it would have to be when i reached 1000 runs in the summer of 2014. I still remember the cars honking as i had reached the landmark while playing an U-17 game. The year prior, was a rough one as my grandfather had passed away, who was an avid supporter of my cricketing ventures. The season of 2014 was completely dedicated to him and reaching 1000 runs that year was an emotional achievement. With his blessings from above, this was the season that put me on the map in national perspectives.

Q: As a university student and athlete, what are some challenges and how do you cope?

A: University is a new chapter in life which is undoubtedly much more challenging than high school. The work load is much heavier and the pace at which the semester runs at is quite threatening. Yet, I think it is possible to balance both if one can manage their time appropriately and understand that at this point in your career; quality beats quantity.

Q: What are your aspirations in the game?

A: Besides fulfilling the dream I painted in my head with the colours of red and white. All I desire is to be the best i can be and go as far as i can imagine.

Q: What are the benefits and challenges of being part of a cricketing family?

Being part of a cricketing family has been nothing short than amazing. You always have someone to talk to for some positive criticism and a partner for the gym or nets. Honestly speaking, I think the only one facing challenges being part of a cricketing family is my mother; she has to put up with all the stinky socks and cricket fuss.

Q: How has OCA helped you in life and cricket?

A: I believe that OCA has had a tremendous impact on the person I've become today in both cricket and in life. In regards to cricket, I owe everything to Coach Derek and OCA. All the awards and achievements have only been a testament to the work Coach Derek has put in. In regards to life, cricket has taught me; to persevere, take initiative, work hard, be determined, be responsible and most importantly to believe in myself. As a bullied child, OCA made me boost my self esteem and become more confident everyday. It was and will always be a safe haven for me and i will forever be thankful to Coach Derek and OCA for what it has given me and what it has taught me.