HE shot to fame following his goal-scoring exploits in the recent 2017 Kuala Lumpur Sea Games.
But for football sensation and national striker, N. Thanabalan, even with immense popularity, nothing much has changed.
“The only thing that has changed is, perhaps, more fans are starting to recognise me.”
“It is a new experience for me. But I keep telling myself that popularity shouldn’t get to my head and that my journey doesn’t end here. I have a long way to go and a lot of things to learn and improve in my football career,” he said.
Thanabalan said his lifestyle was very much the same, including his preparations for Deepavali, which would be celebrated by Hindus tomorrow.
“Nothing extravagant in my preparations and celebration this year. Just like previous years, my priority is my parents and two siblings,” he said at his house
in Taman Seremban Jaya Senawang here.
The Felcra FC striker said ever since he took over the responsibility as the head of the family in 2013 when his father, S. Nadarajah, 56, became paralysed following an accident in April the same year, providing for his family had become his priority.
“I am the breadwinner for my family. Family expenses, including preparations for Deepavali, will be provided by me.
“For Deepavali, I will make sure that my father and mother,
V. Thiru Sundari, 52, and my two younger siblings, Kheeteeswaran, 19, and Keerthikaa, 13, will get at least a new pair of clothes for them to wear,” he said, adding that he had allocated RM2,000 for Deepavali preparations.
“My monthly income of RM5,000 is not that much to spend lavishly. On top of preparing for Deepavali, I have to be wise in my spending as I need to support the family and allocate part of my income for my father’s medical expenses.
“But, I am happy to be able to help my parents and family.
“We are used to living moderately and the most important thing is we are happy,” he said.