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Sports News of Wednesday, 10 June 2020

Source: Ghana Soccernet

Ghanaian footballer discloses agony after being stranded at Mumbai airport for 72 days

Ghanaian footballer Randy Juan Muller has narrated his Mumbai Airport ordeal after he was finally moved to a hotel.

Muller's story gained traction on several portals and social media after he was stranded in Mumbai airport for 72 days.

The 23-year-old lived in the airport from March 21 until June 3 after coronavirus cancelled his flight home.

The Ghanaian relied on the kindness of staff, police and passengers to get by and ate mainly samosas and fried rice to survive.

Muller arrived in India in November to play for ORPC Sports Club in Kerala.

He was trying to return to Ghana via Kenya before India's Covid-19 lockdown cancelled his flight and left him stuck in the airport.

"I came here on a six month visa. We only get around Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000 (£20-£32) per match. I hardly played any matches and had spent around Rs 1.5 lakh (£1,567) for visa and tickets," he told Mumbai Mirror.

"After the lockdown was announced in India, I planned to return home and even bought a flight ticket for March 30 from Mumbai to Ghana via Kenya."

"But before I could return, the government cancelled all international flights and I was stuck here."

Muller was told to head to the airport by local police after struggling to find accommodation but was never able to board a plane.

The youngster explained what daily life was like living inside an airport terminal during a pandemic.

He added: "I took inspiration from Tom Hanks and ignored everything else, I woke up early, took a shower and walked in the garden.

"The private security staff and house keeping gave me samosas. The CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) guys gave me some money to buy food."

"I was running out of money quickly, as everything is expensive at the airport. So I tried to save money."

"Every day it was the same routine, and I watched the skies and rescue planes, hoping that one day I will fly too."

He spent the majority of the day chatting on his damaged mobile phone to family back home.

He said: "I knew I could not give up. I thought of myself as a soldier and never gave up."

"Every week I thought the lockdown would be lifted but it kept getting longer and longer."

Eventually, Muller tweeted out for help and his prayers were answered.

He was taken to a hotel in Bandra after the President of Mumbai District Football Association, Aaditya Thackeray, saw the post.

Muller is in touch with the Ghanaian High Commission who have told him a rescue flight will be scheduled soon.

Watch Muller's interview below;

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