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From the Hammer to the Big Slick: Vikash Dhorasoo’s Underdog Journey

With an undying passion, Vikash Dhorasoo effectively adapted his game on the football pitch

Being overshadowed by his French football compatriots Zinedine Zidane, Patrick Vieira, and Thierry Henry; Vikash Dhorasoo created his own legacy by fully legitimizing that “hard work” really does pay off. His name may not ring a bell for any of the casual football fans and his physique doesn’t look intimidating to his opposition, but the former French national team mid-fielder has an unnerving grit and determination in whatever field he enters.

Growing up as a small Indian boy in a poverty-stricken neighbourhood in Le Havre, Dhorasoo had vivid dreams about playing football and representing his country in the World Cup.

But these dreams quickly got a bitter dose of reality because all his life he was told that he was too small and that he needed to develop muscles in order to be successful in football. The coaches didn’t believe that he had what it takes, and people were not fond of the idea that a lanky player like him can compete with the big boys on the pitch.

Despite all the harsh criticisms and constant ridicules, Vikash Dhorasoo dug deep in his heart and exerted a ton of effort in training and developing as a football player. And after enduring year’s worth of hardships and pains, Dhorasoo got his first big break in professional football when he was chosen to suit up for Le Havre AC in 1993. Being an effective player off the bench opened a lot of doors for him – it even fulfilled his lifelong dream of playing for the French football team.

As a substitute, Vikash Dhorasoo had a splendid career with Les Bleus – appearing in 18 matches from 1999-2006. In a way, he had a short lived yet fantastic international run that continued on in the club ranks playing for Lyon, Bordeaux, Milan, and Paris Saint-Germain, before officially announcing his retirement from football competition in 2008.

With the spirited flame still burning inside of him, Vikash Dhorasoo took his hobby of playing cards and turned it into a passion. He began training and playing the game religiously after his retirement. And in 2009, he had his first crack in a major competition when he entered the European Tour’s Deauville leg. He valiantly battled through a tough field of diverse talents that included hungry qualifiers, wily veterans, and intimidating bracelet contenders. After impressively finishing in 15th place, opportunities overflowed for Dhorasoo as he began cashing in on more tournaments in his homeland of France.

For him it was like déjà vu. In a game like cards where celebrities and athletes are often the target of disparaging professional players, Vikash Dhorasoo proved that he can play with the big card sharks in the region.

Quintessentially, Vikash Dhorasoo is living proof that anyone can be who they want to be and reach for whatever goals they have in life, as long as they have the will to train hard and the guts and determination matter how big or small they are.

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