Berserker midfielder to keep watch on new Indian league
WHEN the proposed Indian Super League launches on September 19, Berserker midfielder Prem Malhotra will be keeping a close watch.
Following in the footsteps of the hugely successful Indian Premier League cricket competition and the Hero Hockey India League, the Super League will run for two months and feature eight franchises.
Indian cricket great Sachin Tendulkar is a part-owner of Kerala Blasters while his former teammate Saurav Ganguly has partnered with Spanish giants Atletico Madrid to establish the Atletico de Kolkata team.
Malhotra, who hails from Mumbai in India, played a handful of seasons professionally in India, including the inaugural season of the I-League, formerly known as the National Football League.
Malhotra, then 19, signed to the Mumbai-based Mahindra United club for the 1996-97 season, and enjoyed stints at Indian Bank, Air India and Mumbai FC before moving to Australia in 2003 after graduating from university with a commerce degree.
Five years later he moved north to Rockhampton and has spent his time in the Beef Capital at Southside United and at his current club, the Berserker Bears.
CQ PREMIER LEAGUE - ROUND 12
Emerald Eagles 4 def Bluebirds United 1 at Emerald
Clinton 2 def Southside United 0 at Clinton
Central 2 def Berserker 0 at Elizabeth Park
Frenchville 5 def Nerimbera 0 at Pilbeam Park
Returning to the Bears after spending the 2013 season at Southside, Malhotra said the club was struggling, but believed coach Andrew Doak had them heading in the right direction.
"This year we're struggling for players a lot. But we're starting to play much better and the team is starting to come together," he said.
Three weeks ago, Berserker took points for the first time this season when they drew 3-3 with Bluebirds.
Their 2-0 loss to Central in Round 12 of the Central Queensland Premier League on Saturday was a marked improvement on the 4-1 margin which separated the two sides in Round 3. "We're trying to play the way the coach wants us to play," Malhotra said. "He's alright with the results as long as we stick to our new formation (because) by next year we'll be there."
Clinton moved to second place on the back of a 2-0 win over Southside United.