“I am very happy and feel very privileged to write a testament to my interaction with Dr. Kannan
I have known Dr. Kannan since about 2003 when we first interacted through what else – but an injury! Chennai was quite small in the expatriate community and if there was one name that was always mentioned with recommendation and respect, it was for Dr. Kannan when dealing with any physical injury, due to soccer matches, the beach cricket match, wear and tear or in my case, being hit by a car while traveling on my motor bike. The Doc managed to get me back together again with a series of exercises and stretches over quite a short period of time for my relative minor, but potentially restricting injury. That was in 2003 or so and then through the years we have kept in touch, not closely I know, but enough to know what each other was up to until it came time for me to call on the services once again of the best sports physician in the country! The New York Marathon! My dream was to run in the marathon and not any but a prestigious one, one of the best and one I happened to have my entry accepted in through a lottery system. But how! 55 years old, too many aches and pains and quite unfit but still working 12 hour days and nursing a nagging stretched tendon injury from too much initial training without the right guidelines. I turned once more to Dr. Kannan and he in turn sent me to his specialty team in the SPAARC Center where his colleagues put me through sometime easy stretches and working up, and sometimes quite grueling exercises in an effort to get me fit and fast enough to run in the New York Marathon! A futile attempt with my many other commitments, but I did run all the way in my first half marathon in Whangarei, New Zealand in September 2011, which was also my first actual distance run, the longest I had ever run in one time. 10k’s as a youngster was child’s play to this first half, in the wind, rain and chill that New Zealand can offer in plenty! But I made it and so onto November and New York, still not fit, many miles less in training than needed but with finances and timing, my one and only chance at this run, and so, on a clear, chilly morning near the Stanton Island Bridge, I lined up with 46,700 other athletes from around the world, and this slightly worn out, over worked and undertrained cook, ran and staggered around one of the best marathon courses in the world.
Thank you Doc Kannan, you were great and without your support and help and that of your team of players who really did take a personal interest in me and my dreams, it would not have happened! I did not finish first, or even in the first 30,000, but I did finish and I have the medal and the photo, plus I did enjoy it and I ran it – I finished it – an achievement I share with Doc Kannan and his team. Thank you!”
– Mr Willi Willson Marathon Runner New Zealand 2011