On our Caribbean Tour with the Indian national football team the most developed of the three football destinations was surely Trinidad&Tobago. In their football organisation one can see that they have hosted FIFA Youth World Cups for men's and women's besides having played bigger footballing nations like England plus the United States of America and Mexico in CONCACAF qualifiers at home.
T&T is a football crazy country and on the drive from the airport to the hotel one could see so many football pitches that this fact became evident.
The same could be said about the media interest in the T&T vs India match on August 21 and the extensive pre-match coverage that India got in the local media. It was a busy time for me in Trinidad&Tobago as I was coordinating all media related work.
Especially the Friday before the match was a long day in the media with India training in the morning, I was asked to go to TV stations, radio shows and newspapers to talk about Indian football. In the end I had visited three TV breakfast morning shows, three radio stations and spoken to four newspapers. All eager to hear about India and its football.
The most fun I had was that Friday evening on Power 102 FM's sports show hosted by Rey Davis which was attended by Sunil Chhetri, Gouramangi Singh and Shaun Fuentes (TTFF Media Officer) besides myself. We talked on the show for over 30 minutes about football in India and Trinidad as well as letting people know more about Indian football as one has to make that point again and again - yes, we play other sports then cricket.
And once you tell them about Indian football, people want to know more. And that was one of the big positives that people are genuinely interested to hear more about Indian football.
Then on the match day I did joint commentary with two local commentators to give the T&T public more insights into Indian football.