Deaf footballer Fil Kamps has had quite the career.
He’s competed for Great Britain at the World Cup, the Deaflympics and he is also a British Deaf Football Cup, English Deaf Football Cup and English Deaf Football League winner.
That’s a lot of success to enjoy, and to be proud of, for the now 27-year-old. Turning out for his country in particular – a dream he had held ever since he was a boy – is a particular highlight.
But the journey to realising your dream is never a straight one, and for Fil it was no different. There are always plenty of bumps and plenty of setbacks along the way.
For Fil, one particular moment stands out strongly to this day as he was one of the final players cut from the GB squad ahead of the European Championships in 2015.
It was a gut-wrenching moment, it broke him and felt like he had let others down.
But that setback arguably fuelled the comeback – as he went on to work even harder, desperate to achieve his dream and turn out to play football for his country. With that hard work and relentlessness he eventually achieved it.
But, at the age of just 24, Fil was forced to retire from football due to injury – an abrupt end to a career that had given him so much until that point.
Three years on he admits he is still struggling to fill that void left behind by the absence of football.
He does keep himself busy, as an ambassador for The Mintridge Foundation as well as roles with Kent County Council, the Kent Disability League and also as chairman of Fulham’s deaf team.
But, in terms of finding something that provides the same electric passion as playing football, there is still some management to go.
Listen to the podcast below
Interview: Alasdair Hooper
Image credits: With thanks to Fil Kamps
All music in this episode is courtesy of Otis McDonald
Visit Fil Kamps’ website here