PBL
Hyderabad Hunters

Who’s the Man? He’s the Man – Mark Caljouw

By: Venus
Date: 29 Dec, 2018
Image Courtesy: Hyderabad Hunters

“Who’s the Man? He’s the Man!!” that’s just the chant that’s taking the Premier Badminton League by storm in its fourth edition currently underway. While the Hyderabad leg might have been a mixed bag for the home team – with a resounding win and a comprehensive set back – Mark Caljouw, however, is having a dream run with 3 wins out of 3 this season and looking at his form it will take some performance to get the better off him!

 

Ten days into the league, life seems to have gone an absolutely delicious makeover for Mark. He’s almost a cult hero in Hyderabad with youngsters screaming his name when he steps out for a practice, and young ladies swooning over every move of his! The social media fans just go berserk over him and the most asked question to the Hyderabad Hunters social media channels – is that if he’s single & available.

 

Mark Caljouw – is clearly enjoying all the adulation and he must! It takes some doing to win over Indian fans, and he’s done it with exhilarating performances on court and some fine attitude off it!

 

At a recent visit to the local radio station – Radio Mirchi – Mark was a picture of composure, willing to laugh at his own expense and happy to open up about his life & times back in the Netherlands. What’s absolutely clear is that here’s an athlete who’s comfortable in his skin, doesn’t take himself too seriously off the court and but is completely focussed on it!

 

Talking of on court performances – he has been an absolute revelation. A relatively unknown commodity to Indian fans, he’s come and taken the league by an absolute storm.

 

His shirt-ripping celebration following his match against P Kashyap made him an instant Instagram star. And his ability to hold nerve at a crucial juncture of the tie made him a fan favourite.

 

However, the Hunters team management aren’t quite surprised by his exploits. Although, they’re definitely happy to see their assessment come true.

“We picked Mark, based on his current form. As he had been making excellent progress on the tour this year. Also, we wanted a player to fit the bill for the MS2 slot – and he’s done it just about perfectly so far!,” said Hyderabad Hunters Team Manager Vamshi.

 

Although, he did admit that even they were pleasantly surprised by the meteoric rise of Mark’s this early in the tournament.

 

So, this brings me to the question what has fuelled this Mark mania in PBL Season 4?

The simplicity of his persona, the sheer brilliance of his game and his passionate & expressive self might be the three definite answers.

 

One of the moments, I will remember for a long time from yesterday’s match was a point wherein Mark – with his back to the net, flicks the bird across the net and then fights to stay in the point, eventually winning it and letting out a roar. That moment just summed up why you’d pay good bucks to watch this guy play.

 

Finally, as he closed out his match against Lee Dong Keun, I caught him just for the brief moment – considering to rip his shirt off – one more time. The crowd would have loved it, but he changed his mind. Clearly, he’s not just all out passion – there’s a fine mind on those shoulders that’s driving him further.

 

Three out of three, all the adulation of the Hunters fans, much has changed over the last 10 days for Mark Caljouw – but fundamentally he knows what got him thus far, is good enough to take him even further – and he will stick to that at all times.


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