Fr Carlos Luis SAC
Motivated football player and athlete from Ponda, Joshua D'silva, a student of Rosary College, Navelim, likes to spend time with his family and friends, go on jogs, and work out in the gym.
At the Reliance Youth Foundation City Championship College League (December 8, 2022, to January 8, 2023), he bagged both the Golden Boot and Golden Ball awards, thus setting a mark in the sports arena.
Speaking about the positivity that surrounds him to take up sports seriously, he says, “Sports runs in the family. My mom (Betty D'silva) has been an international volleyball player and is currently a master athlete. My dad (Kennedy D'silva) played as a goalkeeper and as a national athlete. My eldest brother (Sansiew D'silva) is a national handball player, and my second brother (Aaren D'silva) is a professional footballer, who is playing for Hyderabad FC in the current Indian Super League.”
Undoubtedly, Joshua is inspired by his family, but in particular, his brother Aaren. “I've seen Aaren play since I was a kid. It is amazing to see him with the ball. Watching him always pushed me to do better,” he says.
Joshua has also been a part of the U-18 FC Goa team which won the Goa League and the Elite League in the year 2018-19. Being a team player, he practices regularly with the team he plays with.
Speaking on how he plans to go ahead and be a successful footballer, he narrates, “It's all in the mind. If you're willing to take a chance, put in the time to train on the field and in the gym, eat well and get enough protein, practise healthy sleeping habits and avoid distractions. Stick to this routine, come what may, and no one will be able to stop you from becoming one of the best.”
That explains how he is also a jumper and sprinter in athletics, and the current state champion in the triple jump and a silver medallist in the long jump, 4x100 relay winner along with his team in the competition held by the Goa University State Championship.
Joshua is in his final year studying for a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce at Rosary College of Commerce and Arts, Navelim. Trying not to lose focus, he quotes the Bible, saying, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13)”.
He has also had tough times due to injuries like hamstring pulls, groin injuries, and Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries, which stopped him from playing for a year as he had to go through surgery and make a comeback.
He says, “It's not much, it's much more than that, a lot of sacrifices have to be made, a lot of parties have to be missed, a lot of work has to be put in and a lot of care has to be taken of your body.”
Like the millions who love Lionel Messi, Joshua too admires him. Excitedly, he says, “For me, he is the best footballer who has ever played the sport, it’s because of the things he does on the field, just pure magic and unimaginable, I fall in love every time I watch him play. He does things nobody ever does or can do, I've watched him throughout his Barcelona career.”
Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar are among the others who have a great influence on the way or type of game he plays implementing observed techniques.
Not losing track of what he is here for, Joshua reiterates, “I am today what I am, because of the grace of God. Whatever I do will always be for the glory of God, and I would want to continue to give my all in football so that I can glorify Christ throughout the nations.”
Finally, ending the conversation, Joshua acknowledges his elder brother Sansiew D'silva’s support to stay on the right path and leaves us with the advice and guidance received from his father. My father always says, “Do what you enjoy, and with the capabilities and the natural gifts that God has blessed you with, working hard will take you to great heights.”