If Odisha and hockey have grow to be synonymous as we speak, it’s because of the efforts of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. For a state with a wealthy cultural historical past, sport has by no means lagged behind.
After the highs of the Tokyo Olympics, the place the boys’s hockey staff gained a historic bronze medal after a spot of 41 years, the ladies’s staff too was to not be left behind. The staff led by Rani Rampal confirmed braveness and mettle to complete fourth.
So, did Odisha instantly grow to be a sporting state? The reply is a no. For many who have adopted the exploits of Indian hockey within the final 4 many years, hockey has been extraordinarily in style on this state. Actually, India’s greatest defender within the years passed by was Dilip Tirkey.
Now a sitting Member of Parliament, Tirkey was identified for his dribbling abilities and for tackling forwards of the rival groups with nice deftness and ability. Right this moment, Dilip
Tirkey, who nonetheless goes to the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar for his personal health, is blissful that the following era has lived as much as the religion.
Frankly talking, as a state, Odisha could give an impression of being laid again. Nonetheless, the work which has been executed in creating sporting infrastructure in its capital metropolis has been excellent. Bhubaneswar’s Kalinga Stadium is trendy and has hosted elite competitions in hockey in addition to athletics.
It isn’t simply the hockey gamers like Deep Grace Ekka, Namita Toppo, Birendra Lakra and Amit Rohidas who’re well-known names from Odisha. Sprinter Dutee Chand, too, hails from this state and trains on the Kalinga Stadium.
There are a lot of who marvel if Bhubaneswar is the correct metropolis, geographically, to host sports activities coaching periods. The warmth is excessive and so is the humidity. Nonetheless, none complained about it when the Asian Athletics Meet was held right here 4 years in the past.
On the subject of hockey, the Kalinga Stadium has hosted the FIH World Cup in 2018 with nice success. All of the groups which got here to Bhubaneswar had been extraordinarily pleased with the enjoying circumstances and services. That’s one thing which even Delhi can’t boast of — because the Nationwide Stadium within the Capital now homes extra authorities places of work. The benefit with the Kalinga Stadium is its neat format and motels positioned close by.
The identical venue has hosted the Olympics qualifiers as effectively. Subsequent up for Bhubaneswar and the brand-new stadium in Rourkela would be the 2023 FIH World Cup. It is a dream mission of the state authorities and Naveen Patnaik as they need to showcase how Odisha can mesh sports activities and tradition.
The state doesn’t deal with expenditure incurred on constructing sports activities infrastructure as a waste. The plan is, in coming years, to make Odisha a sporting state and a task mannequin. The Birsa Munda Worldwide Hockey Stadium in Rourkela is being constructed at an estimated value of Rs 112 crores.
The state-of-the-art construction with 20,000 seating capability will provide an unparalleled sporting expertise for spectators throughout the 2023 World Cup. “The stadium together with the allied services will probably be a benchmark for different hockey stadiums around the globe,” stated a spokesperson of the Odisha authorities.
One other 20 hockey coaching centres are being developed at a price of Rs 200 crores within the state. Of those, 17 are in Sundargarh, the cradle of hockey in Odisha, and the opposite three are in Sambalpur and Ganjam districts.
In the interim, Odisha is celebrating not simply its personal hockey stars but additionally gamers from different states. To be loosening their purse strings for all gamers is an indication of their magnanimity.
Views expressed are private