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Fate ball


Written by Damhuri Muhammad, and was originally published in Mekong Review. Nov 07, 2023

Kivlan dribbled the ball. Not a leather ball like the one Aroma FC players used, but an old plastic ball that was not balanced when rolled. It made aiming more complicated: if a striker kicked the ball, it would not reach the intended target. Because it was so light, the ball would fly away from the opponent’s goal. But Kivlan had his own tactical skill. Instead of accurately addressing the goal mouth with his left-footed kick, he aimed to the right by about two fathoms—he knew the ball would curve by itself, thus enabling Kivlan to outwit the goalkeeper and get the ball into the goal. It was a skill he’d honed through precise calculations and practice, but his teammates believed Kivlan could score with his eyes closed. 

The pitch was still deserted that afternoon. Kivlan was the first to arrive. After the sheep were settled in an area not far from the football pitch, and while waiting for the herds to feed, Kivlan and other shepherd boys always played football. The ball was simple, the football pitch even more so. The goalposts were staked with leftover wooden bars from a wrecked cowshed.

Read the full article here.

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