Panaji, March 25 (IANS) Young Goan entrepreneur Anish Quenim has scored the goal of his life on the hallowed green turf of Anfield, home to Liverpool, a legendary English football club.
And no, Anish, a rough and tumble rugby player himself, did not pick a pass from the team captain Steven Gerard and slammed the football home. Instead, smartly dressed in a suit and a striped red tie, the kopite, a dyed-in-the-wool fan, got hitched earlier this year at the 121-year old Anfield football stadium in an almost fairytale tribute to his two loves; his sweetheart Natasha and the Liverpool football club.
"Since I was a little boy, I used to say, if I marry, it will be a princess and it will be in a kingdom and that 'kingdom' for me was always Anfield. Today, I'm glad I achieved both dreams. I always wanted to step on the Liverpool Pitch someday, if not as a player, if not as an owner, if not as a staff then at least as one of Liverpool FC's most passionate supporter," Anish told IANS.
The Goan lad runs a chain of hospitality businesses, including a lounge bar and diner, a beach club in partnership with renowned entertainer DJ Aqeel, features on the British football club's official website as one of the star fans.
"Anish Quenim and Natasha Mistry made the 6,800-mile trip from Goa to tie the knot at a ceremony inside the club's L4 home. After making their vows, it was off for a tour of the world-famous stadium before a wedding breakfast in one of the boxes overlooking the hallowed turf," Liverpool football club's official website says, sporting photos of the beaming couple.
Anish cannot get over the fact that his dream of associating himself with Liverpool FC since the age of three has finally come to fruition and how!
"When I was three, my uncle gifted me the Liverbird crest (the official emblem of club) and ever since I've grown up to envision myself as a supporter and dreamt of someday associating with the Club," he said.
According to him, a dream marriage on the football pitch could even set a trend of sorts.
"Well, would love to set a benchmark and a trend for weddings. But hopefully it'll inspire many to achieve many a dream, not just marriage," he claims.
And the hospitality specialists at the English club are only ready for more on-pitch weddings.
The club has even floated a special wedding package, "Get married at Anfield for just 4,499 pounds," which is approximately Rs.3.73 lakh.
The club also offers services of a specialist wedding co-ordinator, civil ceremony room on hire, a three course breakfast and meals and access to vantage spaces in Liverpool and its hallowed museum.
"Our wedding packages are designed with simplicity in mind. You can select from unique Wedding Breakfast Packages or Evening Buffet Packages where all of the work is done for you," the club's website states.
A kopite all his life, Anish swears by the service on offer.
"No fee or figure can compensate the incredible experience we had in Liverpool. Special love and regards to the incredible hospitality at Anfield. They do exhibit "You'll Never Walk Alone" (the club's motto) in some style," he says.