Getting to know Subhan Javaid - Brookes Union, Sports Officer
Subhan is the 2022/23 Brookes Union, Sports Officer and was last month re-elected to continue the role into the 2023/24 academic year.
Subhan studies Sports, Coaching and Physical Education and is a member of the UCCE Cricket programme. In his first year in the role, he successfully implemented a Tape Ball league which has encouraged more international students to engage with the TEAMBrookes Cricket Club.
We caught up with Subhan to find out more about him.
What is your personal sporting experience and what first encouraged you to take up sport?
I am a cricket player who started playing in the streets of Rawalpindi (Pakistan) with tape ball at the age of 9. At the age of 14, I felt like pursuing a career in this field. I joined the top cricket academy and started my journey. Alongside cricket, I used to play other sports as well, including football, badminton, tennis, table tennis and boxing. I have been actively taking part in these sports since school time. I have accomplished a lot in many sports but cricket has always been my main sport. My biggest achievement was when I was declared man of the tournament which was held in Dubai in 2018 which involved top teams like Ms Dhoni and ICC Academy.
What does sport mean to you?
Most people play sports because they believe it keeps them fit and healthy which is valid but that is not the prime reason for me. I believe we should not limit ourselves to health and staying fit, sport is a lot more than that. I believe, sport makes you a great human being and teaches you life lessons. It teaches you how to be disciplined, goal-oriented, committed, dedicated and resilient. You learn how to take defeats wholeheartedly, you have to experience things where you have to sacrifice your personal interest and think of others in your team. It builds your leadership skills and makes you humble. There are certain stages in real life where you are down and out, but you have to keep your head high, accept failure and face whatever you have in front of your face with charisma. This relates, because in sports, you get defeated but you stay tall, accept the defeat with the right spirit and learn from it.
Do you have any personal or sporting role models that inspire you?
I look up to Cristiano Ronaldo, Mohammad Rizwan, Khabib Nurmagomedov and Virat Kohli. All have one thing in common and that is hard work. I am a strong believer in hard work and I have faith in this that if you will be honest with your work, work will pay back to you. All these players are best in their respective fields because the way they work is phenomenal and different from other players. All these have the attitude of not giving up and prefer replying to the critics with their performances. They have beaten and challenged the best of the bests in their sports who were far more talented than them but they have proven that hard work can beat talent if talent will not work hard.
As someone who is involved in the UCCE Cricket setup and multiple Brookes Union Societies alongside your studies, how do you balance everything?
University is a kind of time period where you have complete freedom and you are accountable for all your actions. It’s entirely up to the individual how positively or negatively they use that freedom. I keep the mentality that the kind of present you are having right now will determine your future. So, having a tough time now and doing all the tough things, especially following your dreams and all the other positive activities will give you a secure future. But using freedom in a negative way and just following the wrong things would give temporary pleasure at present but would not be worth it in the long run. Prioritise those things which will be worth it in the future.
Why did you decide to run for the Sports Officer position and what are your main goals?
As I mentioned before, sports not only make you healthy and fit but also make you a good human being. I am a person who believes in bringing a change and I believe that sports are one of the great ways to do that. I am not an international student but I know how it feels to be one, so I want to give them that confidence that they are not away from home by bringing them close to one another. Most of the friends I got in my life are through cricket and even in university, most of the people I met are through sports. So, it is a great way to build connections which can last forever.
Why are you so motivated to make a difference?
Life gives a chance to everybody but not everyone is capable enough to recognise it and avail that opportunity. I was always looking for that chance where I could create an impact and be remembered forever and I believe there is nothing better than sports. If I can motivate people through my own hard work and encourage them to push themselves to no limits and if I am able to do that, I will die very peacefully.
What do you think some of the biggest barriers are for students to get active while studying at Oxford Brookes?
I think there are many students, especially international students who do not feel that they are in a friendly environment. There is a communication gap between them and sports clubs because they do not have the courage to approach directly. More importantly, students believe that if they play sports on a regular basis, they might fall short in academics. Many students do not want to pay membership fees due to financial issues or personal problems.
What are you most looking forward to?
The main aim is to bring more people into competitive sports. For example, bringing players to be a part of table tennis, badminton or squash club etc. Another aim is to organise those kinds of events where those players can take part who do not want to compete at the club level and are just looking to play socially. Giving opportunities to both genders, not being biased towards any group. Increase the communication between the players who want to join a specific sports society but are hesitant to ask out. Identifying the talent through different sports and giving them the confidence to play at the club level.
We’re very excited to see what Subhan can do in his second year of being the Brookes Union, Sports Officer. If you have any questions or ideas for how we can continue to develop the Student Sport programme, you can email Subhan directly, email@example.com or contact the TEAMBrookes Staff Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.