I’m not a footballer, nor a cricketer. And also not a fan, who is mad for football, but I like it. I used to watch football matches on the television screen while I was a schoolchild. I enjoyed local and the world cup football matches at that time.

Bangladesh’s first division football player Belal Hossain’s magical playoffs with the football made me proud in the 90s, as he belonged from my locality- Nawapara industrial town in Jashore district. I found him an undefeated footballer at that time- the time of the era of football- not the cricket. Soccer was also a popular game at that time. It was not well-liked in the Indian subcontinent, but the western countries.

Belal, who was not too older than me, had become a worthy player in Bangladesh while football ruled the whole world. He usually played for Dhaka Wonders, Abahani and Town Club of Khulna, Shaukhin Krira Chakra of Jashore and Azad Sporting Club at Nawapara.

My cousin Asif Zaman Rumon, who was my younger friend, was very fond of football. He was also a fan of those who were football heroes. He liked Belal Hossain, too. My friends Protap Saha and late Kamal Hossain admired Belal for his thrilling performance in the field of football.

That very hero of the football field is now a history. He is no more with us. Pandemic Covid- 19 took him away to a world from where nobody can return. He breathed his last at around 4am local time at Dhaka Medical College Hospital on 24th June aged 53. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and a host of relatives and well wishers to mourn.

Whilst recalling the memory, I cannot bear the brunt of the sad demise of the footballer.

Belal coincidently meets with me now and then before the outbreak of the Covid -19 in Bangladesh. He, who is also a relative of mine, during his meeting with me didn’t forget to ask about my physical conditions. . This not only for me, he was friendlier to others, too. I cannot console myself when his memory kicks my heart.

May the Almighty bless him! Rest in peace Belal!

Saifur Rahman Saif is a Bangladeshi journalist. He works at New Age, a popular newspaper. He can be reached at saifnewage@gmail.com


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2 Comments

  1. Avatar Zeenat Khan says:

    *Tears shed for another person are not a sign of weakness. They are a sign of a pure heart.* ~José N. Harris
    I offer my sympathy to you Saif!