Twelve Thai cave boys and their football coach who were rescued from a flooded cave in northern Thailand have shared their experiences with journalists, newsmen, and family members.
“When I knew we were trapped, I told others to stay strong, don’t despair,” one of them told gathering of newsmen, family members, and friends at a press conference in Chiang Rai.
“I believe we could find a way out, and I told my colleagues not to be scared,” one of them says as they all spoke through an interpreter.
The Thai cave boys had been in the Chiang Rai clinic since last week, when they were pulled from the Tham Luang cave complex in a three-day operation, carried out by professional divers majorly from the United Kingdom
Before the press conference, journalists had been told to submit their questions for vetting.
“I was very hungry. I was thinking about fried rice,” the youngest among them said jokingly as he spoke in Thai.
“We felt weak after two days since we didn’t have any food on us. We were deliberating on the way out. We kept quiet for a while to think of a way out,” one of the boys said.
“At a we dug 3-4 meters to find a way out. There was no food. There was no water, but we managed the water there,” he said.
The Thai cave boys were making their first public appearance to answer questions about their ordeal.
After the briefing, they will be reunited with their family members, official say.
The boys are members of a football team called the Wild Boars. During the press conference they wore T-shirts emblazoned with a boar’s head.
“Media can ask them questions and after that they can go back to live their normal lives without media bothering them,” Thailand’s chief government spokesman Sunsern Kaewkumnerd told news agency AFP.
Chiang Rai’s provincial governor, Prachon Pratsukan, added that it would be their “only official media interview”, saying that there would “be no more speaking with the press after this”.