It’s a confidence booster for me: Robin Singh

Nilanjan Datta

Coming on a substitute against Chinese Taipei, Robin Singh ensured the ‘most important match of the Tournament’ yielded India three full points in the AFC Challenge Cup 2014. The morning after, the lad from Delhi spoke to about what it means to score a winner for the country, the next match against Guam, his ‘regained confidence,’ and much more. EXCERTPS:

Robin Singh sweats it out with his teammates
What does it mean for you to score India’s winner in injury time?
It’s my first goal for my country and that too, a winning one. Honestly, it took long for the feeling to sink in. It’s a proud moment not only for me but also my family. I can imagine and excitement and the pride of my mom and dad. After all, we are a country of 120 crore of people and I was the one who saw my country through. I dedicate this goal to my parents.

But this is just my start. I need to move on from it and concentrate on the next match.

Does anything change for Robin Singh with this goal?
It makes me more confident as a player. It’s the AFC Challenge Cup being played in a different country and scoring in a foreign country, far way from all my near and dear ones, makes it all the more satisfying. It’s a special moment for me as much as it’s a confidence booster. In fact, I was so overwhelmed that I even forgot to even celebrate my first International goal. I just hope, plenty more follow (smiles).

What are the team’s thoughts against Guam?
First things first – every team is here to win. If we will be playing to win, so would Guam. But it’s a different team who may have a different technique and tactic. We will stick to ours Coach’s plans. We were desperate for a win in the first match of the Tournament and now that we have achieved it, we need to sustain the momentum.
Personally speaking, I look forward to getting a chance and scoring again.

There’s a perception Robin Singh hasn’t done justice to his talent.
(Smiles again). I’ve never felt that way. But yeah, people will have their opinions. You just can’t control or influence what they think. My Coaches will tell you that I’ve never shied away from working hard and sweating it out. But at the same time I admit that I am upset when I don’t score. It happens. The perception will change for sure. I won’t let my talent go waste and the fact that I am donning the India Blue explains it hasn’t.

What much is life a learning curve for you at the moment, especially from the bench?
I need to remember that I have just joined the team. I need to be fit, sharp and confident enough for the Coach to put his faith in me. A player always needs to be patient and understand the situation. Whatever the Coach asks for me, I’m there for the team – be it 5 minutes, be it 55 minutes or be it 90 minutes.

You have a whole lot of tattoos – can you explain their significance.
(Smiles again). I have five tattoos. I have one on the leg – it’s a tattoo of stars. I believe in stars and it’s important one always dreams big. Nine is my lucky number, hence, I have nine stars on my left leg.

I also have a tattoo of a Warrior on my right shoulder which signifies hard work and fighting through rough times. There’s also a Prayer, with a Cross on my right shoulder. My mom is a Christian and hence, I had it. Then I have a tattoo of all my family names on my chest – my family always will stay close to my heart. Lastly on the back, I have a tattoo of Faith. I need to believe in myself, my abilities and talent.