The 16 year old hails from Kerala and managed to secure victory over Prathistha Rana defeating her 15-4 and 15-9 respectively.
She will be moving onto the third round of the Yonex U-19 Yonex-Sunrise Smt Krishna Khaitan Memorial All India Junior Ranking Selection Tournament.
Nazrin’s father Rafeek Mohammad was a professional footballer for Mohammaden Sporting FC and then later Reserve Bank of India therefore her childhood was filled with his stories from back in the day when he represented these two teams.
He wanted her also to be a football professional and Nazrin even started training to become a goalkeeper in her early days before switching over to Badminton professionally.
On Friday she secured this win over Pratishtha Rana and was waiting for her fathers call post his duty.
“I grew up reading and listening about my father being a national-level goalkeeper and that’s why I opted to become a goalkeeper. I played as one for Ananthapuri Football Club for more than five years but then my father would also make me play sports like tennis, swimming and badminton. When we decided to make the switch to badminton, he told me that he will support me unconditionally and whenever I win a match, he tells me to update him whether he is busy in bank meetings or not,” says Nazrin.
In her initial years when she was training to be a goalkeeper,her mother used to drop her off at the Ananthapuri Football Club before deciding that she wanted to join the TOSS academy and focus on badminton solely.
Nazrin went on to hone her game and eventually ended up becoming state champion with the support of her coach who is an Indonesian BWF Level 1 coach Stefanus Rendy Desmawan.
Her biggest moment in life was when she met the former olympic champion Taufiq Hidayat.
She has always received immense support from her parents but due to the attire there has been some resistance from her relatives. “Both in football and badminton, one has to wear shorts. When some of our relatives told me or my father that I should wear a full-length tracksuit, my father told them it’s his daughter’s decision to play whichever sport she likes. Later they all understood and supported me,” Nazrin said.
The youngster who was progressing steadily and for the first time went on to play her first all india ranking tournament in the u-15 and u-17 categories in 2018,despite winning three matches she ended up missing the final draw.
The following year was better for her when she managed to reach the third qualification round but could not progress further.
Last year she even managed to achieve her career best by reaching the fourth qualification round in the senior ranking series before losing to Sneha Pawar.
She had shifted to Bengaluru last year to train at the ISports Academy but soon contracted Covid-19 and was unable to train therefore she missed a few junior tournaments.
“Making the shift from Trivandrum to Bengaluru meant that my mother had to shift with me. When I contracted Covid-19, I would make her throw shuttles to me in the dining room so that I could be active,” said Nazrin.Before shifting to Bengaluru, she also trained under eight-time national doubles champion Sanave Thomas at Trivandrum for more than 18 months. “Initially, I had to work on her movement and speed on the court as she was a bit slow. It was also the time when most of the sports complexes were closed due to Covid-19. So, her parents would try to book school or individual club courts for training. Shifting to Bengaluru means that she will get to compete against a variety of players and that’s what’s needed for her to win a title and play consistently,” said Thomas.
Her journey has been quite eventful and challenging and we hope to see her crush the top ranks soon and represent India.