Short Story: The Old Man Changed My Life

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The old man transformed my life. I was a disappointment - a nonentity to the sport I love - and an insignificant to the team I once fantasised about. At ‘nothing’ kilograms I was a lean boy, gawky rather. My physique never really fitted into the bracket of my brawny competitors. Despite this, my ungainly figure had never stopped me from believing in myself. I knew I would make it at some point. Ultimately, a stranger reminded me that the most important part about achieving my goals was to keep working harder. It was now a week before the first match of my eighth season with the squad – a season that I had hoped would be my breakthrough season. I had trained for months without break. I pushed the limits of hard work, breaking blood and sweat…show more content…
“It’s the thirteenth one” I answered, while letting out a heavy breath. The old man scrolled his eyes through the list and looked back at me. “I’ve seen you play before, you know. I personally think you’re quite the player.” He was now lighting a Kent. “Well, you’re quite wrong. No one, from my coach to me, sees it that way. I’m far from the ideal player.” He paused to inhale some tobacco. “Nothing ever comes easy, son. Great things take time, and it’s only the ones who continue to persevere that turn out great.” In that moment, I was reminded why I had kept going for eight years straight. I always believed I was good enough. If I didn’t have any potential, I wouldn’t have even made it as far as a substitute. The old man, who I never saw again, restored a belief in me that had slowly been declining over time. I headed back to practice the next day, which, in contrast, showed off a glowing, saffron-yellow sun. Over the course of that year, the old man’s words encouraged me to work harder than ever. Not only did I persist to secure my place in the first team, but I earned captaincy in the years to follow. The old man helped me to my greatest triumph yet, a triumph where I proved to myself that giving up is never the

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