Football, as the world’s largest sport, has a huge influence in Africa.
The enthusiastic audience, the cheers one after another, and colorful costumes are the highlights on the court.
Senior fans may know the nicknames of many African teams, such as Nigeria is the “Super Eagle”, Cameroon is the “Invincible Lion”, Senegal is the “Tranga Lion”, Egypt is the “Pharaoh”, Morocco is the “Atlas Lion”…
Like Brazil and Argentina in South America, Nigeria Eagles and Cameroon Lions can be regarded as a pair of old enemies on African stadiums.
However, this issue is not intended to talk about the enmity of African football’s giants.
We look at the East African country of Tanzania, where there is a special football team–
On the green field outside Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s largest city, Halfan Kaianga successfully completed a series of training movements such as running, passing and passing in the hot tropical sun.
His hands on crutches burst out of blue veins because of too much force, and sweat dripped from his forehead.
Kaianga has loved playing football since he was a child.
He dreamed of becoming a world-class football player like Messi and Ronaldo, but he had to undergo amputation treatment because of a traffic accident in his childhood and lost his right leg forever.
At first, Kaianga, who was on crutches, also tried to participate in the football match of his classmates.
However, neither at speed nor in flexibility was as good as before.
He was inevitably unable to do so much in the game, and was gradually rejected and isolated by his friends who had played football together, which made Kai Anga frustrated when he was a child.
Despite the great physical and mental suffering, his sincere love for football has never changed.
Kaianga is 26 years old. He lives by working during the day.
After 4 p.m. every weekday, he will come to the suburban football field to participate in the training of the Tanzanian National Amputee Football Team.
This special team, established in 2019, consists of amputees players from the ages of 20 to 36.
Here, Kaianga met many friends who had the same experience and dreams with him.
At first, high-intensity physical training often made his body unable to stand it, and countless falls also scarred his whole body.
But the thought that he could play football with his friends and participate in football games like a child, Kaianga was so happy that he forgot the pain and pain.
“The creation of the National Amputee Football Team has rekindled my dream of becoming a football star.” Kaianga is full of hope for the future.
Team manager Matthias Yolo told reporters that the team currently has more than 30 players, most of whom have been amputated after traffic accidents, but have not given up their love for football.
“It is often thought that amputees are strange to participate in sports such as football.
Yolo said helplessly that he hoped to let more and more Tanzanians understand the meaning of the sport by participating in more international competitions.
It is gratifying that the team won the 2022 Amputee Football World Cup after going to Angola to participate in the African Amputee Football Cup of Nations in 2019.
“Now more and more people are beginning to look at us with new eyes.
After all, the Tanzania national football team failed to reach the World Cup!” Yolo said with a smile.