Shillong, Jan 28: Damaitphang Lyngdoh made his Indian Super League debut last Sunday, the first steps in emulating his hero Eugeneson Lyngdoh.

Like Damaitphang, Eugene, now an MLA after hanging up his boots, was also with Bengaluru, with whom he had some of his most successful years.

Damait has, so far, made two ISL appearances, both as a substitute. His first was against FC Goa on 23rd January and the second was against Chennaiyin on Wednesday.

“My biggest inspiration is bah Eugene. Everyone who plays football in Shillong looks up to him,” Damait said on a Bengaluru FC video. “I’ve spoken to him and he told me to keep working hard, be patient and my chance will come.”

Before even his maiden ISL appearance, the Umlyngka native had featured for BFC in the AFC Cup preliminaries, which was his senior team debut. He describes this as his “best moment” in the video interview.

The 18-year-old, who stands at just 5 feet, 1 inch tall, has been with Bengaluru for several years now after being spotted playing for the Meghalaya sub-junior side, working his way up from the U-15 side to the U-18s and reserves in the Bangalore league and AIFF Junior League before graduating to play with the first team.

“I used to think, ‘will I ever get a chance to play in the senior team?’ … But I try to push myself, try to give myself confident and gain the coach’s trust and get minutes and do something for the team. I see myself becoming an important player for the club, winning everything for BFC,” he said.

You can watch the full video on Bengaluru FC’s YouTube channel here.

(Bengaluru FC file photo)

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