Mawuli Gavor, the popular Ghanaian actor, has talked about his life as well as who the greatest Nigerian player is.
The actor, who has featured in numerous Nollywood movies including 2 Weeks in Lagos and Chief Daddy talks about his interest in sports, Jay Jay Okocha and more in this entertaining interview with PETER AKINBO.
Did you participate in sports growing up?
Yeah, I think back then I played almost every sport; the ones available were football, basketball, volleyball, handball, badminton and tennis. It was basketball and football I played most of all.
How good would you say you were at these sports?
As good as I could be back then I guess. Basketball and football would be the main ones and then everything else would come after.
Did you ever want to pursue sports as a career?
Initially, I thought I would play basketball but the reality is I went to University in Pennsylvania and I thought I would play with their basketball team but there were always a lot of requirements to actually compete in that kind of sport. I also felt like I had a much better chance doing other things apart from sports.
What were some of the things that stopped you from pursuing sports?
Not everyone can pursue sports. Right from time, I decided that I was just going to take a look; I was going to see how it would play out so you never know, I may still give it a try.
Were your parents in support of your initial interest in sports?
Of course, why not? As long as it wasn’t something harmful, or something that would cause you too much stress. If it goes well, good and if it doesn’t go well, no problem but I didn’t have that type of problem with my parents especially with things that are worthwhile.
Do you regret not going into sports?
No, I do not regret it. If it’s about the money, I am also making my money with what I am doing. If the opportunity comes my way, I will take it. And since it didn’t come my way, why should I be angry, why should I have regrets?
How did you later settle on acting?
I think sometimes, things happen in the way that’s just the way it’s intended. I was still an accountant when I switched, it’s just one of those things, and maybe God wanted it to happen.
What is your favourite sport?
It’s probably a tie between football and basketball, it’s a 50/50.
What are your favourite teams?
I don’t really support teams, I support individuals. My favourite basketball player would be Kobe Bryant, Golden State Warriors’ point guard Stephen Curry, Lebron when he was in Miami Heats and Cleveland Cavaliers, and in football, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Jose Mourinho.
Why do you like these individuals?
They all have the same orientation which is do the hard work and everything else will come after as it’s not really up to you.
How would you rate Mourinho’s performance in Manchester United and do you think he was treated unfairly by the players and the club?
Of course, he was treated unfairly; he is the last manager to win a trophy for Manchester United. I think history has vindicated him, he was right about Paul Pogba, he was right about Luke Shaw, and a couple of others. Mourinho has always been right.
Would you say Kobe Bryant had any impact on you?
I think Kobe rubbed off on the entire world. God knows why He decided to take him and his daughter away. So, of course, he impacted all of us.
Who do you consider Nigeria’s greatest footballer ever?
I think Jay-Jay Okocha. It’s interesting that he never won too much but based on skill and being a legend, he deserves it. Ronaldinho (Gaucho) also didn’t win too much like Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo but he is still one of the best footballers that ever played.
In the present Nigerian team, is there anyone that catches your eye?
Is it the team that didn’t make it to the World Cup that will catch my eye? When you people make it to the World Cup, ask me about them. Ask me about Ghana team that made it to the World Cup.
So who is your favourite in the Ghana team?
In the new boys, none of them are proving themselves to be standout players so I’ll also go back in time and pick ‘baby jet’ Asamoah Gyan.
Would you support your child if they wanted to go into sports?
If he is good enough sure, he can pursue sports. If not, why should I waste my money? It still depends on whether my wife will allow. You know in this life, the way I have seen it, she is the one that has the final say.