Lowcountry physician playing in Physician’s World Cup

Published: Jul. 2, 2023 at 12:35 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. - A Lowcountry family practice physician, Dr. Kirt Caton, is playing in the Physician’s World Cup this week in Vienna, Austria.

Dr. Caton is captain of the United States team in the world medical football championship. The tournament brings together the best soccer playing doctors in the world, over the age of 45. The men get to represent their countries in matches while also getting to network with other Physicians through different conferences and workshop sessions.

Dr. Kirt Caton is Chief Medical Officer at First Choice by Select Health. He says playing in this tournament every year reminds him of the role soccer has played in his life.

“One play in particular, I thought I was running as fast as possible and when I saw me on the screen it looked like I was running in slow motion,” Dr. Caton said. “So, yes, I’ve slowed down a lot from my college days. But, I’m playing with people my age so it evens out.”

Dr. Caton is from Trinidad and Tobago. He was recruited to the Baptist College of Charleston in 1989. He played soccer there for what is now Charleston Southern for four years before going to medical school at the Medical University of South Carolina. He specialized in family medicine at MUSC.

He’s now an assistant soccer coach at James Island Charter High School. He says the kids he coaches, as well as his own two sons, help keep him in shape for the Physicians World Cup every year.

“I try to stay fit, or relatively fit, you know doing regular exercise,” Dr. Caton said. “It shows my patient’s that I’m doing what I’m telling you to do. Eat healthy, you know, exercise and that’s part of what we do.”

He says soccer will always hold a special place in his heart because it allowed him to live the American dream - coming to the United States on scholarship and eventually fulfilling his dream of becoming a doctor.

“I came to the U.S. with a backpack and a duffle bag.” Dr. Caton said. “I had to look on the map to see where Charleston was.”

The United States team has never won the Physicians World Cup. However, Dr. Caton says that’s not what’s important to them anyways.

“We celebrate, you know, one year we got 11th out of 12 teams and you could have sworn we won the World Cup,” Dr. Caton said. “We were running around and having a good time.”

The first game in the Physician’s World Cup for the U.S. team and Dr. Caton is happening on Sunday. They’ll be playing six games in seven days.