Bhubaneswar: Teenaged siblings- Ranjan and Sunil Soren fought destiny over the years to follow their passion which resulted in their selection to India at international levels
Ranjan (17) plays for India U-18 whereas Sunil (14) for India U-15 and have been playing football since they were about 9-10 years old. While Ranjan has played for Punjab FC, ISL, Reliance FC; Sunil has participated in AFC, Chef Cup. Both are currently preparing for upcoming tournaments where they will represent India.
The Soren brothers stay at the slums of Salia Sahi in Bhubaneswar and practise at Veer Birsa Munda grounds at Maitree Vihar area under the able guidance of Jaydev Mohapatra.
Coming from impoverished backgrounds, football was the sole saviour for the siblings. Their father, a mason, and mother, a housemaid, however always supported them and asked them to only focus on their game. They do credit their coach for not only polishing their technique but also showing them the path to follow which has brought them recognition and respect.
When super cyclonic storm Fani caused havoc across Odisha, the Soren family had their fair share of hardships. Their thatched-roofed kutcha house was razed to the ground and the family had to spend their days and nights in open sky for over a month.
It was football that came to rescue as Sunil’s stipend rebuilt the house.
OMMCOM NEWS spoke to Ranjan but failed to reach Sunil who is currently at Goa practising with the Indian team. We wish the best to both of them and hope they continue to bring accolade for India and Odisha.